There are 250,000 plus new pieces of malware being produced each day equating to one piece per person in the US in just over three and a half years. The question is, what do you do with this onslaught of algorithms which are written with malicious intent in mind? One company, Emerging Threats thinks they can help with part of the equation… Identification of the sites which are compromised.
I recently met with the company at Interop in Las Vegas to learn about their IP and domain intelligence solutions ETPro Ruleset for IDS/IPS and IQRisk Suite for IDS/IPS, Firewalls, SIEMs and DNS. The company determines a Threat Intelligence level for a site which you could consider analogous to Google’s Page Rank but ranked for maliciousness. Rankings vary from 0-127 and each entry is categorized into over 40 different categories. Moreover, years of observation yields a history of sites which can be useful to determine for example if a legitimate site has been temporarily infected with an SQL injection or other exploit.
Moreover, the data includes geolocation which may help an organization fine tune its firewall policy.
Companies are free to determine their policies based on the data provided.
Byron Rashed with the company explained that the company uses proprietary methods to identify malware and further utilize human analysis and feedback loops to ensure accuracy of the rule set which is updated daily.
Emerging Threats sells primarily through OEMs. Moreover, the work companies in this field do is absolutely crucial for Internet users worldwide and keeps the web from becoming the Wild West it could devolve into if malicious code and the people behind it were free to infect devices at will.
Copyright Communications and Technology Blog - Tehrani.com
One of the goals of ETSI NFV is to allow new entrants to provide solutions to carriers based on software instead of hardware. CSPs hope they can take advantage of the same network efficiencies they see in their data centers in their core networks.
In this brave new world of software, there will be lots of opportunity and challenges as well. For example how do OSS/BSS systems manage new services provided by new entrants? Of course incumbent players will be in the game as well and we can expect more interoperability of systems in the near future. This will become a necessity as carriers will demand more plug-and-play solutions than ever before.
The drive for more interoperability is in-part responsible for the launch of the Operations Support Systems interoperability initiative or OSSii whose objectives is enabling easier interoperability between OSS systems, reducing overall OSS integration costs and enabling shorter time-to-market.
The bottom line is in this brave new software-driven carrier world, companies providing solutions to carriers are going to have to interoperate at unprecedented levels. In order for this to happen, the billing and provisioning systems are going to have to communicate.
For more information see:
- EricssonPress release
- Huawei Press release
- Nokia Siemens Networks Press release
- Lucid thoughts from Tom Nolle
Tags: bss, carrier, ericsson, huawei, interoperability, nfv, nokia siemens networks, nsn, oss, sdn, software telco
Related tags: solutions carriers, based software, press release, interoperability, systems, software
Cloud computing has really become a household word with mainstream media outlets running stories on television about the growth in the space as recently as today. In the tech world, we are no stranger to this move as it has been taking place steadily for over a decade but with an extremely accelerated pace these last few years. The IT service management market is no exception and one vendor in the space, SysAid has made an aggressive prediction about the intersection of cloud and ITSM.
SysAid’s Founder and Chairman, Israel Lifshitz says his company is leading the push to cloud-based ITSM with over 1,000 customers using their solution as a service. Other important stats – the company’s customers have chosen the cloud 3x more often QoQ and currently 40% of the company’s customers are using it.
I recently sat down with company representatives Oleg Sin and Dena Wieder-Freiden recently who told me the company’s SysAid solutions are a fit for SMBs as well as Fortune 500 companies and supports 42 languages. The company integrates its service desk solution with asset management, MDM, online chat support and the ability to manage the help desk and assets from all popular mobile operating systems.
The graphic below shows a typical asset management screen.
Moreover, they explained the system supports an integrated monitoring model for network devices and integrated password services for resets and to unlock accounts. This is in addition to integrated task and project management as well as calendar and scheduling features.
There is SLA management as well and utilizing the ITIL CMDB performance benchmark you can compare your company’s performance to other SysAid customers around the globe.
The company certainly touts its integrated solution as a differentiator, pointing out that competitors require you to glue separate software of varying costs together.
They also showed me a demo pressing the F11 key which allows rapid service desk submission – a screen shot is taken instantly and the user has to choose a problem category and add a description. Since the screen shot is sent automatically, users do not need to report the specific error message they receive. Other nifty features include remote-control based on HTML5 and the ability to have users submit requests for things like gaining access to resources such as files, printers, scanners or storage devices.
You can further configure the solution to require manager approval for the installation of freeware and the system also allows a user to request budget to purchase software.
Another area of differentiation is the customization of the software allowing a form to be prepopulated with choices. The system is flexible enough in fact to allow it to be used for hiring by HR. The company’s category driven templates come with the system and comply with ITIL best practices.
Another challenge the company helps customers with is minimizing traffic over the WAN. This is done through the use of the its RDS software which the company says is the next generation of remote discovery services functioning like a proxy server in order to optimize the communications between devices and the cloud. The system can even integrate with LDAP behind the firewall without opening ports.
Oleg mentioned that the MDM functionality was added recently at no charge for customers. In separate conversations, MDM vendors acknowledge the threat from ITSM companies and generally believe their increased feature-sets are a reason to pay for a standalone MDM solution. Customers of course will make the final decision on the matter.
In the future we can expect a SysAid patch management module with automated control via policies as well as a manual option.
Perhaps the most fascinating part of the meeting was the focus on MDM support as this space is turning into a huge opportunity for standalone players. Sure, this story lead with cloud growth but at this point, many of us aren't too surprised to hear this news. The question of more interest perhaps is whether we will begin to see the ITSM and MDM markets merging and if there will be acquisitions in the space as a result.
As companies are faced with managing an ever-increasing amount of devices and software systems, having more automation in their ITSM makes a lot of sense and this is where SysAid continues to invest with its goal being to become the ITSM company providing superior value for your organization.
At Interop Las Vegas 2013 Avaya was demonstrating their real-world Shortest Path Bridging (SPB) solutions and while interoperating with Spirent, HP and Alcatel-Lucent. Many of you will remember when Avaya was actually the enterprise division of Lucent before the company spun off just over twelve years ago. Randy Cross the company’s director of PLM discussed how there is a rapid move to software in the networking market and SPB is an evolution of MPLS allowing services to be created dynamically on the server where the applications reside or on the switches nearest the users.
This is one of the main benefits of SPB in-fact… It allows customers to simplify network creation and management by requiring service provisioning only at the edge of the network. Avaya thinks the new protocol has a bright future as it saves time, effort, and reduces human error by dynamically building and maintaining the network topology between nodes using intermediate system to intermediate system (IS-IS), a carrier-grade link state protocol. Another benefit lies in its ability to establish a multi-path fabric for traffic distribution and subsequently maximize bandwidth utilization on all paths while being able to execute seamless, sub-second network changes.
The company showed multicast over SPB utilizing its VSP 4000 multiservice edge switch and later demonstrated a sub 200 millisecond failover to me in their booth. I can’t vouch for the actual speed of the failover recovery as I didn’t have a stopwatch but it seemed quite rapid.
Cross told me using this technology and the VSP4000, you can extend the service enabling fabric to the edges of the network supporting a distributed enterprise.
He further explained that they deployed this technology with video surveillance company Pelco and were able to show that SPB provided three times better performance than IP multicast (PDF) without needing to reset the IP cameras frequently.
Another big benefit of this technology is building metro area networks (pictured) where a data center can have VSP 7000s or VSP 9000s while the VSP 4000 can sit in the basement of a building providing all the benefits of MPLS with security and isolation at a lower cost. This can be as simple as having a few engineers lighting up the metros quickly with fiber to the building and a truck roll to deploy the box he explained.
Other benefits of this solution include simple commands of a few words to allow services to come up quickly between nodes as well as the ability to transfer virtual machines rapidly between the gear of various equipment vendors.
Zeus Kerravala, Principal Analyst, ZK Research had this to say about the news, "These four vendors coming together to showcase SPB interoperability in a public forum such as Interop is significant. In comparison to alternative fabric technologies, SPB offers more vendor support, offers greater scaling and has implementations which are closer to the actual standards – facilitating this type of interoperability testing. Companies that are looking to virtualize data centers and reduce network complexity need to consider an approach based on Shortest Path Bridging."
The software telco(r)evolution representing the move from hardware to software is perhaps the biggest trend in the world of carrier telecom this decade. Whenever we see such disruption in a market, it becomes an opportunity for new entrants to displace existing companies. As you may recall, Sonus Networks and Acme Packet (now Oracle) were just a few companies which were born and prospered during the transition from circuit to packet switched carrier networks.
In the past I have written about Metaswitch and their software telco solutions through NFV or network functions virtualization and their open-source Project Clearwater initiative which allows a carrier to run IMS on standard servers for free.
In both instances the company has shown leadership in the move to software which runs a telco. Another company I consider a software telco pioneer is Alianza. I wrote about them in 2011 when they announce d a deal with Clearwire to provide the company with hosted voice solutions.
I spoke with Kevin Mitchell the company’s Vice President of Marketing, about his company today and this is what you should know. Alianza has a relationship with Level 3 Communications who provides the termination, origination and wholesale services while the company provides a cloud-based voice platform. He says the company provides everything a voice service provider would need to buy, build or manage. In fact the two companies are working together to provide customers with the Level 3 Carrier Cloud Voice Solution. He continued that this could apply to a green field situation or even a migration to IMS.
The concept of “software telco” is a move from “bespoke or custom” hardware to software – there really is no reason why the solution can’t live a cloud and be delivered as a service. In fact, Mitchell tells me that his company embraces much of the concepts embodied in NFV… He says they run their own software and leverage VMware and HP servers for session management, applications and features.
Kevin further explained that a service provider using Alianza instead of hosting their own equipment wouldn’t have to deal with the CAPEX associated with the servers and other equipment needed to run the network. In fact they would just need to provide the CPE such as ATAs, soft clients or IP phones and pay Alianza as they grow. He also said that not all of his customers have the budget for SIP, VoIP and IMS expertise and as a result they turn to his company so they can in-turn focus on improving their video services and broadband speeds.
Moreover, he touted the company’s 350 web methods for integration and control functionality allowing smooth back office, customer care and billing integration. He also explained that carriers aren’t locked into preset calling/service plans… They have complete control of how their customers receive and are billed for the service they receive.
A wave of cloud-based companies are providing enterprises with cloud-based services from payroll to CRM and call recording. To date, communications service providers haven’t had many options to choose from in this area and the nature of their business dictated in many cases that they manage everything themselves.
With the advent of NFV, carriers told equipment providers that they wanted to be able to design their networks in the same way an enterprise designs its data center… Using virtualized software running on OTS servers. As this transition continues, there is no reason why a carrier shouldn’t or wouldn’t consider working with a cloud-based provider for their IMS services as well.
After all, if you are going to become a software telco, you have to explore what the benefits are of controlling all of the software yourself. Why not get a head start and host your services from a carrier that exists already, providing you APIs and referenceable customers? This of course is the vision Alianza hopes many carriers will continue to consider when evaluating their software telco options.
Be sure to learn everything there is to know about NFV and the birth of the software telco at Software Telco Congress, Nov 19-21, 2013 in Santa Clara, Ca.
Tags: acme packet, alianza, etsi, hosted ims, nfv, oracle, software telco, software telco congress, virtualization
Related tags: software telco, cloud based, hardware software, service provider, company provides, software
This morning I was greeted with a reminder of the birthday of a Google Plus acquaintance on the home page of Google.com. For over a decade this home page of Google has been clean and white with the exception of an occasional offer for some Google service or hardware or some special doodle which signifies a day which the company deems important. Sometimes they even test a humorous message around the holidays designed to push even more of their services at once.
The question I cant help but ponder though is whether Google is going too far trying to jam Google+ down the throats of its search users. Of course they want to make sure we are all engaged with our Google social network and there is no better form of cheap advertising than this real estate. But personally. I am bombarded with services which alert me to the birthdays of people I know... Including Facebook. Moreover, I don't think I need another place to aggregate this info for me. And even if I did, I am not sure I want this information on the page which I use for searching.
What's your take? Is Google overdoing it in trying to make Google+ successful?
Companies like Facebook and Google will want to soak up as much of this data as possible and use it to generate revenue through a variety of services.
At a certain point, many of us will have sensors on our bodies - perhaps as part of our smarphones which measure our pulse and body temperature in real time. Using analytics we can use this data to determine the epicenter of a variety of incidents. For example, one imagines heart rates will increase in unison when there is roaring thunder, tsunami or earthquake.
Moreover, this data can be used to determine the spread of the flu or a pandemic based upon the increasing temperature of a population.
In addition there could be early heart attack symptoms we can determine from this wealth of sensory information which means lives can be saved... Who knows what other treasures we will discover as this is an untapped area of research.
Enter Stephen Wolfrom, the man behind Mathematica and Wolfram Alpha... His latest adventure is personal analytics and has already developed an app for Facebook which can tell you interesting facts about your friends and relationships. He also records his phone calls and keystrokes and monitors his personal productivity in this manner.
He beleives that by using such data, people and companies will become more efficient. In fact he compares the ability to monitor this information with investing. He says, you are basically investing blind if you can't track your investments but if you do track them, you can make a lot more money.
Seems to me the key takeaway here is wearable tech + big data analytics means better personal and corporate productivity.
If purchasing decisions in this new market begin to be driven by such logic, the already optimistic estimates about the growth of wearable tech could be low.
This could be a very big deal for this emerging space as some analysts already say the market will reach $5.8 billion in 2018, representing a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 40.8 percent from 2012 to 2018!
Disclosure: I am CEO of TMC and my company is the host of the world's first Wearable Tech Expo July 24-25, 2013 in NYC.
The march to a software telco world is progressing nicely
Communications service providers are at war with OTT providers and need to ensure they are able to battle on as level a playing field as possible. There are significant costs associated with running a major telco and hardware infrastructure certainly ranks high among them. Sure, OTT providers like Skype and WhatsApp have infrastructure costs as well but they often leverage standard servers and software to achieve their goals. Contrast this to a telecom operator who typically buys proprietary equipment from a number of specialized manufacturers. The difference in costs between these approaches is quite steep.
This is of course is why carriers are pushing equipment providers to provide all of the network functions they supply in software which will run in virtualized instances on off-the-shelf servers. It also explains what ETSI network functions virtualization or NFV is all about and Metaswitch Networks has been on the forefront of this trend and hopes to ride the wave into larger carriers worldwide.
To further this push from hardware into software, the company recently announced Project Clearwater which takes the components of IMS and runs them on standard servers in an open-source manner. A number of carriers have leveraged open-source Asterisk in the past to provide telephony service to their customers, now they and others can take advantage of this new initiative to provide open-source IMS as well.
One of the main reasons carriers want to shift their network functions to software is it allows them to select products from a wider variety of vendors. The reason has to do with the costs of developing telephony hardware for carriers. You need phenomenally deep pockets and lots of patience to sell to carriers as an upstart hardware provider. As a result, an amazing number of equipment companies have gone belly up waiting to become adopted by telcos worldwide. Software on the other hand has less cost associated with it meaning a potentially higher likelihood of success.
Still, telcos can never be too cautious choosing a company to base their network on. One of the benefits of going with an open-source project is you no longer need to worry about one company to support it.
I spoke at length with CTO Martin Taylor and he tells me they learned a great deal from the efforts of many of the players in the social networking and cloud space and took the best ideas from these players and applied them to a SIP centric IMS network. Some things they learned and applied were using DNS as a load balancing technique as well as building massively scalable and resilient solutions in a low-cost manner.
How low cost you ask? Well, I am glad you did. Taylor says about 2 cents per subscriber per year based on the costs of AWS. Of course the solution is not dependent on Amazon, but this is just a guideline to consider. Moreover, this cost covers core plumbing of voice, video and messaging… You would still need an SBC, telephony app servers, messaging app servers and media gateways.
He further explained that carriers who are looking to deploy RCS know they have compete with OTT providers and being able to lower the cost of IMS is a huge help in doing so.
Metaswitch will supply support and bug fixes for the project. Taylor exclaimed, “Charging for peace of mind really is what it boils down to.” This and supplying additional solutions is how the company hopes to monetize this new initiative which is free for telcos to use.
This news is a potential game changer for telecom. Carriers once had to grapple with whether to purchase their IMS solutions from the US, Europe or Chinese equipment providers… Now they have the option of trying a software-centric, open-source approach. They can even try this solution in tandem with other trials going on in their labs.
Be sure to learn everything there is to know about NFV and the birth of the software telco at Software Telco Congress, Nov 19-21, 2013 in Santa Clara, Ca.
The point is, the name was stupid. It was certainly different and caught us off-guard but sometimes thinking different is thinking incorrectly. The issue is exemplified by an email from Rakuten (formerly Buy.com) which refers to the iPads as 3rd and 4th generation instead of the proper name Apple picked for these devices.
Even now, Apple refers to the latest iPad as the iPad with "Retina Display." Do you really think this is easy to remember? If you go through the trouble of coming up with a name like Lightning for your power adapter, why do expect your customers to remember that their iPad is the one with "Retina Display."
I am imagining a soccer parent at Starbucks being asked - "Which iPad is that?" I'm not sure - the latest one I think.
The reason this is a missed opportunity has to do with the comparison to the iPhone product line. Oh, you have an iPhone 5? I have an iPhone 3... I guess I need to upgrade.
And what happens with the next iPad - will it be the iPad with Retina+? Will it be the iPad 4S? Or how about calling it The New iPad again??
When you have a good thing - like naming conventions which work, why do you need to screw around with it? Anyone have an answer? Because if you do, it will explain why Apple made the decision to lose control of its branding. The question is, will the company learn from its mistake?
In a way, this pen reminds me of HAPIfork - the fork that vibrates when you eat too fast... These are a new class of devices designed to monitor your activities and assist you in improving your behavior.
You can preorder the pen now... It should be available this August.
The carjacking victim alerted police to the fact that the car had mbrace2 and at this point law enforcement tracked the car and was able to end the chase shortly thereafter. There is no telling what would have happened if a brand of car without such technology had been stolen.
Read more at Extreme Tech.
In fact, smartphones are status symbols today and feature phones tell others you aren't with it or are cheap.
Google is not Apple but they have certainly learned a lot from Cupertino and applied much of it to Google Glass. Even though this new wearable tech device is sleek in comparison to its capabilities, some believe wearable tech makes you look like a jerk. In fact CNBC's Carl Quintanilla even mentioned so on live TV today. Interestingly the audience didn't think he did. Or maybe they were being polite. Watch it for yourself and decide.
One day, wearable tech could become as ubiquitous as smartphones or perhaps even replace them. Society's acceptance will in-part determine how the future unfolds.
If you want to learn more about wearable tech be sure to be at TMC's Wearable Tech Expo July 24-25 in NY where we'll explore all the latest industry innovations if their full "jerky" glory.
Check out What's on Tap for the GENBAND Perspectives Summit? by TMCnet's Rich Steeves
See me live at 2:00 pm today here at GENBAND Perspectives 2013 where I speak on a panel "Harnessing the Power of Social Networking" in the Grand Cypress Ballroom here at the Hyatt Regecy Grand Cypress.
I am in Orlando for GENBAND Perspectives 2013 and the show is about to begin. last night there was a poolside reception which was rained out - but the venue was able to move about 1,000 people quickly indoors where the reception continued without a hitch. OK, a few of us had some wet clothes but other than that things have gone well so far.
Drummers kick off event
GENBAND Chairman David Walsh takes the stage. "Digital life is interactive. We are constantly interacting with it. None of it can happen without secure digital networks." Will companies, lead, follow or get run over? They have to decide he said.
General discussion about how many new domain names are registered... How many emails are sent - how much of it is spam (hint: almost all), how many people are on the Internet, etc.
He segued into a discussion of OpenTable and Uber - apps which don't use people but they facilitate transactions between buyers and sellers for restaurants and car services. 1 in 8 married couples met online he continued.
He made a funny telecom joke - if you got hear early, you could use SinglesAroundMe to find a date and then use Uber to get a car and OpenTable for a restaurant location - this is the new triple play.
He also discussed WhatsApp and Viber - he uses and loves both. He mentioned these OTT services are great but not ubiquitous. GENBAND is developing tech to allow these services to be federated.
Discussion moved to WiFi - he discussed the law of wireless gravity - bits will find their way to lowest cost infrastructure as fast as possible. "Spectrum is constrained and expensive. We can use math and science to make it more efficient but it isnt as effective as fiber which you can deploy more of to add capacity."
New York will become a carrier by converting phone booths to wireless hotspots - they will be able to become an ad agency and deliver content to various geographies and generate revenue. Hotels are also telecom carriers because networks are built where people gather and vice versa.
Discussion of how much heat is generated by data centers - they are power an water hogs (for cooling). Intertech is their partner and they provide more efficient cooling solutions.
We are beginning to see the start of cyber-warfare they also have an investment in Mandiant - the company finds and remediates problems. Also they are working with ISC8 to help find faults before they happen because quite often you find a threat 40 months after the intruder got into your network.
Devices are more valuable than ever. We want to help you [carriers] become a vital part of this evolution.
Charlie Vogt President and CEO takes stage
Discussion of the pace of change, GENBAND success - growth, speed of growth and forecasts of future growth. 80 of top 100 service providers are their customers. They are a hug part of Verizon FiOS, BT, Shaw, NTT, Telus and a number of other carriers. At CIBC and University of Texas at Austin - they are providing significant telecom infrastructure.
We are watching a video about how GENBAND empowers service providers and enterprises - by boosting scalability, efficiency and profitability - "Making Networks Smarter."
$100M annually in R&D; is invested by the company. Small cells, WebRTC and cloud are a few areas of these investments.
Verizon CTO Tony Melone takes stage starts off - tech can build a better future... Together with partners we will take on societal challenges, healthcare, public safety, education, etc. Gave example of a wireless telepresence robot to allow remote students to learn. Also, "Make the world more sustainable and improve healthcare and remake entertainment with state of the art infrastructure which delivers superior experience consumers want."
Apps have to run on secure, reliable, available infrastructure - this is the vision at Verizon. We strive to deliver this day in and day out. 4 platforms.
4G/LTE - largest footprint in US and world... We achieve speeds faster than advertised today. US is ahead of world in 4G - thanks to our competitors trying to catch us.
IP - important in everything we do
FiOS - our Quntum services offers 300 mbps to consumers - soon we will offer 1 gbps if they need it. Reminds us we constantly underestimate tech needs/growth.
Cloud: Terremark: this is an important part of our portfolio.
We built 4G on 700 mhz spectrum and will put AWS to use soon. We need more spectrum and will go out an get it as needed. He doesn't understand why some want to limit telco access to spectrum.Explained the company is using the spectrum it acquires - it doesn't shelve it. It is investing billions in spectrum build-out in-fact. Won't launch before it is ready- it is not trivial to build a nationwide VoLTE/wireless VoIP network.
Video is 50% of global traffic on backbone some estimate as high as 90% in not too distant future.
Gave shout out to GENBAND, Ericsson, Alcatel-Lucent and others who allow them to provide more cost-effective services.
Moved to smart-home discusion - FiOS - PON - 18M homes, mid-30% penetration roughly. 150 HD channels and reminded us up to 300 mbps to the home. They will migrate the backbone from 2.5 Gbps to 40 gbps and when this happens, they can provide 1 gbps to home.
In their broadband home router - they want to add intelligence so new devices can connect quickly and then connect to the cloud without user set up. They want to mak it easier for consumers to get access to the latest technology.
They see FiOS more as a business play - allows them to enhance their investment in the asset. They are being aggressive in moving from copper to fiber. Will accelerate this move based on what they learned in Hurricane Sandy.
"Cloud is real and growth continues... Means different things to different people." They focus on enterprises - secure connections to cloud with a breadth of services. Managed apps and services...
Thinks their platform will be ideal for partners to build upon. This is how they want to help solve the challenges in the world.
He then showed a video - some of it is below:
We enable so much of what is possible with innovation - we shouldn't forget how important we are - we need to continue building trust with customers - provide reliable networks etc.
M2M 40% growth - 50B devices by 2020 to be connected - partnership with QUALCOMM, Mphase - make it easy to take non-traditional devices - connect to Verizon Wireless network.
How can we make tech make the lives of our customers better and improve societal issues like healthcare.
Tim Wagner of Samsung takes the stage to discuss the company's transformation of the last three years - how the company has become a smartphone leader from a feature phone leader... Said no other company has done this. Largest electronics company in world... $200B organization. Selling 1,500 devices per minute.
Talked about how their commercials made their competition seem like the device was for old people - basically talking about Apple and the ads where Samsung users wet to the lines where Apple customers were waiting to buy.
Now discussed how much their social media presence has grown. Also - discussed hoe 500+ customers launched the Galaxy S4 phone at once. Around 120-125M Galaxy devices have been deployed. This doesn't count TVs appliances, feature-phones and other devices.
Discussed Samsung SAFE for enterprise - connects device to MS Exchange and ActiveSync, on device encryption, VPN support, MDM support from AirWatch etc.
Says they have systematically defragmented Android - makes the devices consistent across carriers and form factors and price points. IT manager can test one device and add SAFE - not each device.
26 devices run SAFE today.
Gave case study examples of successes.
AA has 16,800 Galaxy Note devices - allows American Airlines to provide same level of service to top First or Business Class. Their business is transformed - no more manuals or paper tickets.
Helping customers with tech implants - heart issues - allows them to know if they have heart problems through app on phone. First tablet approved for cockpits in US. DISH Networks - reducing four-hour window, use Galaxy Note to track installers and reroute them based on success at install. Allows them to check reception from top of ladder - don't need to go back down to test repeatedly. Can upsell and gt an electronic signature. Takes a four-hour window to potentially a 90-minute window - changes their business.
65,000 unit Galaxy win at HP.
Moved to discuss Samsung Knox - starts from metal of device to software... Allows work/life balance - keeps you from losing personal photos when enterprise wipes your device.
When turned on - looks for Samsung OS - if it doesn't find one, it will not boot up. Worked with NSA on this - security enhanced Android. Any unapproved apps are deleted/killed. General Dynamics is selling these to the government. They decided to focus on Government realizing that other regulated industries will follow.
Also have a container for business and personal use.
We have the most number of smart devices that are out there he said.
education, healthcare, manufacturing, hospitality and other vertical solutions are their focus going forward.
Samsung and GENBAND collaboration - enhance productivity, anytime, anywhere access to data - creating "Smarter Office." Discussed better business value.
He gave an example of allowing you to tap a phone to a tablet and being able to transfer a all from your office to your mobile device so you can listen to your conference call on the way home and spend more time with your family. Then explained they think GENBAND is the ideal partner to help them provide all this value to the market.
Samsung has an Oprah Moment - everyone in the audience gets a Samsung Galaxy Note 2 - now that is amazing!
This concludes the live blog for now - I am about to prepare for my talk in a few hours - right after the lunch break.
There has been talk within the telecom industry for many years regarding whether communications service providers would eventually just become providers of dumb pipes or provide added value they can charge for. The move to IMS in-part was supposed to allow these companies to add more apps and services to their offerings, allowing them to generate more revenue.
When Apple opened up its iPhone platform, hundreds of thousands of apps began to do many of the things telcos would have liked to provide. Moreover, many functions which telcos used to charge for like SMS were given away for free from the likes of WhatsApp and Facebook.
A natural place for these companies to look for growth is an adjacent industry – one which could not easily be disrupted by an app or a technology shift.
This explains AT&T;’s move into the home security market with its Digital Life solutions which also tackle the task of home automation. TMC reported on this news in the past but the big roll out was today in Atlanta, Austin, Texas, Boulder, Colo., Chicago, Dallas, Denver, Houston, Los Angeles, Miami, Philadelphia, Riverside, Calif., San Francisco, Seattle, St. Louis and select areas of the New York and New Jersey metropolitan area. The company plans to introduce Digital Life in up to 50 markets by the end of 2013.
“We know how important security is to our customers, and this was our top priority when we set out to build Digital Life,” said Kevin Petersen, senior vice president, AT&T Digital Life. “People rely on their mobile devices more than ever, so Digital Life offers an easy and convenient way to secure their homes, protect their families and simplify their lives from virtually anywhere.”
The system is designed to be user-friendly and control cameras, door locks, lights, thermostats, small appliances and provide the capability of setting alerts or programs which manage your home.
Customers can choose from two base plans: Simple Security, which is their basic home security package; or Smart Security which includes enhanced security features and the option to add home automation.
- Simple Security - Includes 24/7 home monitoring, 24-hour battery backup, a wireless keypad, keychain remote, recessed sensors and an indoor siren for $29.99 a month plus $149.99 for equipment and installation.
- Smart Security - Includes the benefits of Simple Security plus a choice of three of the following features: motion sensor, carbon monoxide sensor, glass break sensor, smoke sensor or takeover kit. Smart Security begins at $39.99 a month plus $249.99 for equipment and installation.
Customers who select Smart Security can add these automation packages:
- Camera Package - View live video from inside and outside of the home for an additional $9.99 a month plus equipment and installation.
- Energy Package - Control appliances, lighting and thermostats for convenience and energy efficiency for an additional $4.99 a month plus equipment and installation.
- Door Package - Allow a pet sitter or repairman into your home remotely with automated door locks, or check to see whether your garage door is open or closed for an additional $4.99 a month plus equipment and installation.
- Water Detection Package - Detect water leaks before damage occurs for an additional $4.99 a month plus equipment and installation.
- Water Control Package - Detect leaks and shut off water at the main water source for an additional $9.99 a month plus equipment and installation.
According to wireless analyst Jeff Kagan, "This is the kind of new and innovative service we can expect from the wireless industry going forward. This is an exciting opportunity for AT&T;, and a competitive threat to the traditional home security and automation business. I think we can expect to see much more innovation in this space thanks to this move from AT&T.; This service connects every part of a consumer's home to the AT&T; Mobility wireless network. Home automation and security is the next generation of services we will see AT&T; offer across the country."
ADT is the leading player in the market with nearly 16,000 employees and over six million small business and residential customers. They will have to contend with a new and very large competitor in AT&T.;
I reached out to Sarah Cohn, Director, Media Relations about the company’s thoughts on the new competition and she said, “With nearly 140 years of experience, our customers have told us that what matters most to them is the quality and reliability of our home automation and security solutions. Telecom and cable companies have been in the security space before, and we welcome their re-entry because we believe it will not only raise awareness of smart home technology, but also expand the category, ultimately helping to attract new customers to ADT Pulse.”
Of course AT&T; has the ability to not only offer home automation but can further bundle television, wireless and broadband service into an attractive package which may cut into ADT’s margins if they choose to compete for market share. Consider this the new quadruple or quintuple play. Moreover, AT&T; has retail stores which means this real estate has just become more valuable as some customers will certainly be swayed to purchase from the company which allows them to speak to a salesperson about their home security system in their local shopping center or mall. In fact, home automation can be a complex concept to many - seeing solutions in action at a store is likely the best way to sell such solutions.
There is always the chance that AT&T;’s marketing clout will grow the market and as a result, the entire home security and automation sector will see a boost. Either way, for AT&T;, the move to offer television and now security and home automation shows that communications service providers do have numerous options when it comes to extending their revenue base beyond just dumb pipes.
Virtually everything in our lives has gotten more expensive over the years such as housing, cars, postage stamps, food and energy and yet telecommunications and broadband service costs continue to plummet. This state of affairs is in-part due to Moore’s Law and a side benefit of the declining connectivity costs has been bringing the world closer together. In the nineties you could bankrupt yourself quite easily if you direct-dialed from one country to another yet today IP communications has lowered the price of such calls to zero or a few pennies a minute depending on your location and device.
In 1982 a company called LanguageLine Solutions was founded to focus on helping translate conversations via telephone and since then, the company has grown to 6,000 interpreters who speak 98.6% of the 6,809 languages spoken in the world today. In this same year, TMC launched a magazine focusing on the call center market (now called Customer) and wrote about this company frequently in the subsequent decades.
I recently caught up with LanguageLine representative Linda Taffy who walked me through many of the new services the company offers such as Language Line University which measures the proficiency of multilingual agents. LanguageLine Direct Response is a service which allows your customer who speaks limited English to hear your message when they call in. From there, they first speak with an interpreter who greets them and then changes from being the greeter to an interpreter again. The company also offers a localization and translation service which helps companies keep their websites and documents accurate in other other countries and languages.
Perhaps the most exciting service is Language UC which is a video chat solution which runs on Macs, PCs and tablets. I had a chance to see a demonstration of sign language via an iPad and it was quite fascinating. What I learned was the sign for coffee which is an arm churning looks more to me like butter. But I digress. With this service you could be a traveling salesperson who could go to any country and communicate effectively in meetings by connecting to LanguageLine UC as needed.
Some of the benefits of LanguageLine’s services are you don’t have to hire full-time people on staff and can instead pay as you go. It is worth noting the video service has a license fee as well.
There aren’t too many companies still focusing on the same core business for over 30 years but LanguageLine is certainly one of them. With their new app/video service, they have certainly elevated their offerings and brought themselves current with the times and made their solutions something the mainstream market can use. You might even say the company is now a bit ahead of the times.
For many years now I have waxed poetic about the need for Apple to create a large screen phone. With the latest iteration of the iPhone, the “5” they decided to elongate the device but not make it wider. To me, this mistake is the worst that Apple has made since ignoring the market for seven-inch tablets and then playing catch-up with the iPad mini.
At first, when asked about larger screen phones, Apple said that they didn’t fit in the hand. Of course this was a shock to many people who not only were able to fit larger phones in their hands but to those of us who saw the ad for the iPad mini where the company showed it FITTING IN A HAND.
Now the story from Apple has changed – Apple’s Tim Cook said yesterday that large screen phones require trade-offs. Specifically he said:
My view continues to be that iPhone 5 has the absolute best display in the industry. And we always strive to create the very best display for our customers. And some customers value large screen size, others value also other factors such as resolution, color quality, white balance, brightness, reflectivity, screen longevity, power consumption, portability, compatibility with apps and many things.
Our competitors had made some significant trade-offs in many of these areas in order to ship a larger display, we would not ship a larger display iPhone while these trade-offs exist.
Some of these points actually do make sense and I speculated as such last September but perhaps the most important aspect of a portable device like a smartphone is its battery life and no one gets a whole day of use from an iPhone 5 if they actually use it for much of the day.
In other words, Apple already made a major trade-off sacrificing a full day of battery life to keep the iPhone 5 thin and light.
And every day Apple Store employees get hammered with the question, “When will Apple come out with a larger screen phone.” How do I know? Because I ask them, and this is what they tell me.
The biggest weakness Apple has right now is a device which fits between the size of the iPhone 5 and the iPad Mini. What smartphones does Samsung sell which are bigger than the four-inch iPhone 5? The list is extensive. The Galaxy S3 is 4.8 inches in size, the S5 is five inches in size. The Galaxy Note 2 is 5.5 inches. Want a tablet from Samsung, you can choose from the following sizes: 7”, 7.7”, 8.0”, 10.1” and 11.6”. Apple has merely two tablet sizes. Let’s stipulate for the moment that the iPad and Mini give enough options to consumers looking for a large and small tablet… Even so, we have to agree that Apple needs at least one wider smartphone.
I have consistently warned Apple of the multiple device threat starting on July 8th, 2010. I saw Apple’s Achilles’ heel as being its limited product line competing with myriad screen sizes from a plethora of competitors. I saw how the PC market overtook Apple in the eighties due to improvements in price/performance from a multiple vendors and I realized screen size was the equivalent differentiator in the mobile space.
Yet Apple has changed its story on the topic – first telling us that larger phones don’t fit in the hand (how do they look at themselves with a straight face?) and now that they have trade-offs. The trouble is, these product trade-offs are causing customers to walk across the Verizon store from the Apple section into Samsung’s arms.
I have tremendous respect for Apple but when millions of customers vote with their wallets and tell you they prefer a larger phone – even with trade-offs, you have to listen to them. Or am I wrong? Let me know.
For more – see the post which shows how hand sizes vary widely and making a statement that “our phone fists in the hand” doesn’t take into account how much hand sizes vary.
Using Google’s deep learning, you can have thousands of computers work on recognizing your speech – if only for a brief moment. This according to Google fellow Jeff Dean. To me, Google deserves a lot of credit in the speech rec field as their service works very well and they were very late to the speech rec game. Check out the video from MIT for more.
I’d like to start by saying my heart goes out to the victims of the horrific Boston Marathon and their families. Having said that I read with interest that The New York Times, Boston Globe and Wall Street Journal took down their paywalls during this crisis and moreover many reporters were reporting on Twitter without linking to any content on their sites.
The challenge paid and many other media outlets face is obvious… They need to master social media while also getting readers to pay for their news and/or visit their websites for more information.
Of course there is the ability to give away a great deal of free content on Twitter and other social sites in order to get many followers who can be then directed to special subscription offers.
Perhaps the ideal scenario is a social model which shares revenue with publishers. For example, YouTube allows content creators to share in the proceeds of the ad sales from the content they create. Twitter and Facebook will probably want to consider a similar strategy.
Then again, these two social sites are so popular they may not need to change a single thing in order to keep the growth of their sites going. This of course means media companies will have to adhere to guidelines to ensure they don’t tweet away news which someone would consider paying for. Ron Matejko at Publishing Executive has more and is especially irritated at media sites which drop paywalls when these sites have news which readers need most.
Last year, TMC and its partners launched the first WebRTC conference in the world and the market reacted enthusiastically with a sold out exhibit hall and a standing room only crowd. I tell you this because I haven’t seen so much interest in a new technology in over a decade. It reminds me of the early days of VoIP and SIP and the Internet all rolled up in one.
Interestingly the market that WebRTC plays in is a hybrid of all of the above and more. It is the first technology which allows the browser to do a virtually unlimited number of things. Its more than voice, more than video, more than p2p data communications – it represents with HTML5, the transformation of the browser.
The next WebRTC Conference & Expo which takes place June 25-27 in Atlanta, GA is a veritable melting pot of old and new companies – from telecom, datacom and the web.
The diamond sponsors for example consist of Google, Ericsson, tokbox and Apidaze. Google is the company we associate with the internet and Ericsson with telecom and wireless infrastructure.
Platinum Sponsors are as follows: Alcatel-Lucent, Crocodile RCS, Dialogic, Mavenir, Sansay, Symbee, Vonage, WebRTC Consultants (a Temasys Communications Company), Xirsys. Alcatel-Lucent is the world’s original phone company turned equipment provider to carriers – then we have Sansay who is a next-gen communications infrastructure company making SBCs. Dialogic is the company perhaps most responsible for allowing the telecom and computer worlds to merge and Vonage is the company which really popularized VoIP in the US and elsewhere.
Gold Sponsors are as follows: AudioCodes, Bistri, Digium, GENBAND, Ingate, Oracle, Quobis, StarPound, Teledini, Weemo while silver Sponsors are Apex Voice Communications, Avaya, Exario Networks, Priologic and Symonics. AudioCodes does a number of things but is certainly a major player in the VoIP enablement market… Digium is a major player in open-source communications, Ingate is a huge player in the SIP space, GENBAND is for all practical purposes a smaller version of Alcatel-Lucent but fast-growing, Avaya is a major enterprise and SMB voice provider, Oracle/Acme Packet is the leading SBC player, Apex Voice is a long-running player in the telephony applications space and has been around for decades.
Many of the other companies are new – some of them were started as a result of the first WebRTC show in Santa Clara, last year where people saw how immense the opportunity is in this market.
My point here is obviously to not only thank the sponsors for participating but highlight how different they all are. This diverse group shows us how important WebRTC is. It truly connects the old world of telecom to the new world of interconnected computing and in doing so will enable a massive shift in the way communications and computers work.
It could potentially eliminate the need for Skype if Microsoft doesn’t adapt. It could eliminate the need for phone numbers if the telcos don’t adapt. It could allow new p2p business models to be created overnight like file sharing, computer to computer payments and a slew of other ideas no one has devised as of yet.
We expect all sponsorships to be sold out soon and we will likely run out of room for attendees at the show so please register as soon as you feel comfortable doing so to avoid disappointment and we look forward to hosting you in Atlanta.
Tags: acme packet, alcatel-lucent, dialogic, digium, google, microsoft, oracle, sansay, sip, skype, webrtc
Related tags: alcatel lucent, sponsors follows, number things, webrtc conference, major player, webrtc
Flash memory has already made major inroads in data centers and on Macs and PCs – augmenting hard disks by prefetching and caching data. Flash memory is not perfect but it is getting better as error correction systems have improved and prices have decreased over time. Hard disks too have improved but are hampered by physics – remember, we are talking spinning patters here.
IBM has decided that flash is the future and put its money where its mouth is by announcing a $1B investment in the technology.
Erin Harrison has the details on the scoop as well as the reason why Sprint is one of the company’s big customers. This is really big news for all of technology as flash is already embedded in servers, PCs, smartphones and tablets. If this investment can improve the technology by making it cheaper and faster, virtually all electronic products could see a bump in performance as a result.
And yes, hard disks will still have a role in a world where massive amounts of storage will need to be on tap at all times. The issue is that as flash gets better, it will be used more often and really impact hard drive sales.