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 (c) SIP, Unified Communications Apps & Cloud Communications Forum

November 21 - 2014 - Issue #271

Selling SIP, Unified Communications Apps & Cloud Communications Forum provides thought leadership on SIP, Unified Communications Apps, Lync CEBP Apps, Cloud Communications, OTT-Over The Top Apps from SIP Trunk Providers, Network Providers, Microsoft, Facebook, Google, Apple and other Communications, Mobile, Contextual-Intelligence and other communications companies.

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This is a special edition from AudioCodes to help you gain insights for their solutions and thought leadership.   

Click on the image for the AudioCodes Company Blog. 

Not a Toaster after All 

Making The Most of Your Office 365 E4 Plan 

 LTE Voice Summit Not Only About Voice



Skype Already Ready for Business - AudioCodes Skype Connect    


For those who are ready to move you don't need to go far to find a great solution for Skype and Office 365.   Click on either image for all the details, however, here are some highlights of Skype Connect for IP-PBXs.

Businesses with IP-PBXs or other existing IP communications systems can enjoy the cost savings and additional flexibility of Skype Connect without incurring the security risks associated with the Internet by utilizing an AudioCodes Enterprise Session Border Controller (E-SBC).

As shown above, and E-SBC is used to provide the interface between Skype Connect and the IP-PBX. The E-SBC terminates the Skype Connect sessions from the WAN, applying security rules with access control lists (ACL) and packet filtering, using the Back-to-Back User Agent features to resolve SIP incompatibilities and finally passing calls to/from the business and Skype network.

In this configuration, the media gateway interface to the PSTN and the Skype Connect interface are combined into one hybrid environment. This configuration reduces equipment costs and provides greater flexibility - allowing the same device to terminate both the TDM interfaces from the PSTN and the SIP interface from Skype Connect.

Bottom-line - If you are ready to get going on either Skype or O365, you have one vendor who can help you with both. Real about Missing Lync Features    


One of the many complaints that users have about Lync is missing common call control features.  The team at Bressner has many call control apps ready to solve this problem. For example, FonComfort Power Toast with fast action buttons like to provide:

- Pops up on an incoming call and or Pickup group call

- If a pickup group call you can easily answer and transfer

- Readily available Hold button

- CRM button brings up caller details (or configure your own pop-up application)

Flexible control of second call handling (Busy on Busy)

- Suppress or allow second call alerting
- Manager/secretary functions
- Pickup ringing call by delegate
- The ringing state is added to the standard presence states
- Access restriction to secretary functions by predefined contacts or groups
- Delegate can call manager despite redirection
Team functions
- Pickup ringing call from personal group
- Fast call handling with hot keys
- Accept call, drop call by global hot key
- Make call directly from selected phone number
- Works with USB connected hardphones
- (Aastra 6725ip, Polycom CX600, CX700)

Bottom-line - As Lync morphs to Skype there will still be missing features that are needed for specific job functions which Bressner has committed to help you with.



Mothership Microsoft Gets into the RTC Game

(though the game is also changing)


"No browser today supports a combination of H.264, simulcast and scalable video codecs. Chrome has simulcast and scalable video codecs and even multi-stream video, but it doesn't have H.264. Firefox supports H.264 but doesn't support simulcast or scalable video codecs or even multi-stream video. IE recently announced it will support H.264, as well as ORTC which by design supports simulcast and scalable video codecs, but that's [in the future]" noted Skype architect Bernard Aboba. Skype for Web works on Windows: Internet Explorer 10 and above and the latest versions of Chrome and Firefox. Mac OS: Safari 6 and above. they are not really ready to the game, "We've been actively collaborating with the W3C and IETF to contribute and improve standards like the ORTC API for WebRTC to enable a wide range of features from simple conversations to scalable multiparty video conferences."   Click on image for their vague comments.

Plug-ins versus Apps
Users deal with all kinds of plug-in notably Flash and almost every time you go to a webinar there is also a plug-in required to attend.  IMHO, users will deal with any kind of plug-in or tech to help them solve the problem at hand to attend an event.  Those who use Skype find the app more than useful and don't mind some inconvenience.  Aboba added, "For audio it uses much of the same technology as the mandatory WebRTC codecs. It has a technology called forward error correction so it's robust to packet loss and it can handle a wide range of video bandwidth. On the video side, it relies on the H.264 codec. It also supports simulcast and scalable video codecs, which allow video to scale all the way from a mobile device up to a large desktop system with a large screen, and have all those devices participate in a call at once."

Apps versus Browsers
You have worlds collide or rather be co-compatible with one another.  This chart is very telling about users and trends.  Users want apps for certain interactions and browsers for others. However as the demographic changes it appears that apps will be more likely and widely used depending on the user (retail, health, financial, etc.).  Here's the real-bottom what customers really do.  For example, 82% of smartphone shoppers say they use a mobile browser's search function to research products when they're in a store, according to a 2013 study conducted by Google. Another 62% say they go directly to a retailer's mobile website, while only 21% use a retailer's mobile app in a store. This means retailers will drive OTC or app.  51% of shoppers were more interested in shopping on the mobile web over apps on their smartphones in 2013, according to Adobe data.

Bottom-line - If you are serious about RTC get involved in ORTC (Object Real-time Communications) Community Group.  The mission of the Object Real-Time Communications Community Group, is to define Object-centric APIs (client-side at first) to enable Real-Time Communications in Web browsers, Mobile endpoints and Servers.



Twilio Says They are Elastic

(Guess they finally understand SIP)


SIP for developers is a cause that has been around for a long time very few takers.  The premise of SIP was the ability to do communications in software aka SDA-software defined anything (see article below).  OTC aka WebRTC seeks to be one of the few software solutions that have emerged., communications via mobile apps aka Viber, Skype and others is flourishing without regard to anything having to do with PBXs.  One of the most interesting things about SIP is the ability to be just another packet in the data stream.  Now the folks at Twilio who are not really telco dudes (of course they might disagree) but emerging from the UC space are doing more than offering SIP APIs but now getting into the more than already too crowded SIP trunking space. of being "app happy" click on the image for a blog post from XO a major SIP trunking provider.  While I disagree with the article on the premise that we are just on the early stages of being happy with our apps as discussed above in the article on Skype.  However, you can decide for yourself if we are happy enough with all the apps we have. Level3 talks about SIP apps like this, "UCC applications built on a SIP platform hold a number of benefits for businesses. It's easier to access integrated services, and faster to collaborate with co-workers, partners, and customers regardless of their location. Realtime presence information cuts down on "phone tag" and the delays inherent in email. Business decisions are made more quickly when it's easier to share information. But the easiest way to summarize the business benefits of UCC is that it enables business growth."  Click on image for their article.  I liked the focus on apps beyond communications to include presence which I consider a form of collaboration or at least contextual collaboration. are the basics from Twilio - Elastic SIP Trunking. "Go global in minutes with a SIP Trunking service that operates at internet scale - whether you're already operating at massive scale and looking for a provider that can match that, or whether you're looking for a service that can help you grow quickly. The features you expect from a traditional SIP Trunk are just the start. Explore here how Twilio uses the power of the cloud to offer a truly globally-resilient SIP Trunking service."

As I mentioned above is ability of developers to create cool SIP apps.  As Twilio says, "Developers of IP communications ecosystems use Twilio to allow their users to communicate outside of the ecosystem, ensuring reliable PSTN connectivity wherever the users are. Twilio allows developers to get their connectivity provisioned instantly, and to take advantage of Twilio's Best Quality Routing, ensuring even as the call quality of individual carriers fluctuates over time, Twilio guarantees delivery over the best quality link at any given time."

Bottom-line - SIP "elastic" trunking is not as much about the "trunking" space as it has been about merging communications into the IP traffic stream.  Twilio make be on the right track or at least a different one and given their current success help propel them ahead in SIP trunking.

Click on the image below for a short tutorial on the benefits of "elastic" trunking.



SDA-Software Defined Anything - "Elementary, Dr. Watson"

A famous quote from Sherlock Homes to his friend Watson was about about finding a simple answer to a complex problem. In finding our own simple solution we have found that "strategically, the faster you can communicate, the faster you can change, and those corporations that change the fastest will be the most successful." In addition, while hardly a decade ago many homes used dialup modems, we know today there is an "infinite demand for speed" with gigabit speeds delivered to residential customers and faster yet in the future. Next, the concept of the smartphone as a data device hardly possible five years ago users can see 40+ megabits per second (download) changing the entire experience of the internet. This device will also get faster and more powerful. The focus of this briefing is "as if" you are the CTO of any enterprise what want to know is - what should you be doing about this now, next year and beyond. We see the concept of the enterprise as composed of "elements" which are essentially fundamental building blocks like molecules in building a technological structure like you do in designing new chemicals. These elements can be found in any organization but how they are used is what makes each enterprise different and either successful or not. For examples, all enterprises have sales, marketing, accounting, finance, HR, products, support, services and other key elements. In addition, users manage these functions with various kinds of technologies such as documents, presentations, communications, messages which can be collectively called IP-intellectual property. Technology is the elemental glue that connects all enterprise functions with enterprise technologies. Technologies come in many forms such as onsite, online-cloud, physical things (elevators, buildings, trucks, trains, planes, etc.), user tech (PCs, phones, video displays) and so on. The key functions that the CTO deals with are things like form and function, distribution, training, support and the like. Within the scope of this paper, we would like to focus on a few things that enhance technology and also provide the elements in supporting an organization as things change at an increasing rate. First, if we assume that everything will change faster than we need to as well. How do we do that? How can we help ourselves and others change as well. First, you begin by identifying enterprise-wide functions and optimizing them via communications solutions. That is, for this article, communications is changing faster and in more directions that we can anticipate. A decade ago and even today many users find a deskphone still the basic communications device while at the other end of the spectrum there are users who want to be sky-diving while having multi-user video conference calls and IM-instant messaging during the event. Maybe sky-diving is a bit extreme but doing that on a ski slope is not. The means that you can make happen global multi-media conferencing today using existing software "elements" that can move as the user does and their needs changes.   Second, the exciting part is that companies exist to facilitate that interaction and support the critical QoS. This means as you grow and change the critical network elements in terms of managing who's who, new real-time interaction formats including mobile and web, QoS, security and management will change with you. Instead of technology storm clouds you find that the elements as rain drops emerge. Today, the network is moving rapidly into SDN-software-defined networks. We like to think of it as SDA-software-defined anything. For example, some of elemental benefits of SDA include:

- QoS - ondemand and dynamic traffic performance

- Agile - ondemand network shaping and provisioning and dynamically secure to combat changing attack algorithms and methodologies

- Root management - enhanced component diagnostics and troubleshooting

- Disaster Recovery - reconfigure for nature and man-made crises

- Device management - migration to server and network virtualization accelerates BYOD provisioning

- Naming and connections - organizing, maintaining and optimizing personal identity and privacy

- Provider - platform for carrier/network operator integration

- Strategic view - build simulations and growth models for evolving business demands


Understanding SDA from an elemental perspective gives one the ability to see the future. SDA is just one more step toward the next network evolution. However, the human condition and its problems will continue to challenge us as organizations deal with changing workforces, product lifecycles, growth, risk and more including cyber-attacks (like who had that on their radar ten years ago) and a myriad of other changes. However, the elements of these issues along with technologies that are microscopic and more intelligent will be part of and likely implanted in humans and certainly other species including "implanted smartphones" into peoples' daily lives by the end of the decade.


Last, be open yourself to change and be ready for it making it as Sherlock would say, that's elementary Dr. Watson.






One Last Look Skype for Business - Product Win - Channel Loss you have been on a great vaca or under a rock, you missed the global big news, Lync out and Skype wins the name with Skype for business.  Here are a few words if you missed them and click on the images for the complete though brief blog post.  According to Microsoft, "the next version of Lync will become Skype for Business with a new client experience, new server release, and updates to the service in Office 365. We believe that Skype for Business will again transform the way people communicate by giving organizations reach to hundreds of millions of Skype users outside the walls of their business."  I have deleted the boring blather parts but here is more goodies, "Current Lync Server customers will be able to take advantage of these capabilities simply by updating from Lync Server 2013 to the new Skype for Business Server in their datacenters. No new hardware is required. For Office 365 customers, it's even simpler. We'll do the required updates. And because communications is mission-critical, this release meets a new bar for reliability and performance."  That is about it but more like the tip of the iceberg the announcement is not really the whole story.  Here are few more details from for from the channel perspective.

Will Lync users lose any functions or features when the product becomes Skype for Business?

No. Skype for Business will deliver the same features and functionality as well as control, security, and reliability that enterprise customers expect. For instance, Skype for Business Admins will be able to control when and how the users interface is displayed for their users. This additional control means they can deliver Skype for Business on their terms.

Can I try out Skype for Business before it becomes available?

We have nothing to announce at this time, and will keep customers informed as more information becomes available. - Skype is a great global brand used by 100s of millions of users daily including myself.  The product is reliable and the company is very customer-focused with easy ways to report problems.  However, the world has moved and is increasingly text/chat/pic focused as Whatsapp, SnapChat, Viber and others nibble at various market segments.  The business community remains largely untouched like the monastery with traditional deskphones even in brand new offices used by nearly all millennials. This also means that even the most innovative enterprise they may not embrace this move as a panacea for their UC needs by Microsoft as they have a lot of issue at play with security be at the very top. On the other side, channel partners are as diverse as the user applications and tech they provide/support with many making a great living just on cabling.  Skype for doesn't really help either traditional or the current MS partner base embrace classic PBX telephone needs as those basic functions remain and will remain.  This means, from my experience, the very small and SMB market is still open for innovation and opportunity for UC partners who are agile (a new favorite term for nearly everything) and balanced between basic telephone systems and those that allow for the virtual mobile worker. Hunter Thompson reminds us, "when the going gets tough, the weird turn pro."  This means that MS partners who are UC focused should consider collaborating with traditional "butset" dudes who know the real key is getting conduit to where you need it.




One Last Look Lync Greeter Access/Security    


Here is a really cool Lync device/application from Bressner called UCDoor.  I consulted to a company who also had a similar device and found that nearly all companies have the need for this device.  Saving receptionist salaries, staff disruptions and the vast array of security needs, this should be considered a "must-have" for any Lync implementation.  Click on the image for the website.

- Audio / Video station with one-way video to communicate with guests

    For outdoor and reception locations

- Intuitive touch screen

- Door opening through Lync or via soft keypad with individual customized buttons

- Direct connection to Lync so a Gateway is not required

- Available in various screen sizes

    Menu, logos and ringtones individually developed to match the corporate design

- Software package with Windows, Microsoft Lync and example program for door opener with preconfigured ring button and connection to Lync

- Microsoft Lync CAL not included

- Includes: Software development kit for Microsoft Visual Studio for customization of the GUI



One Last Look UC Beckons Beacons    


This really isn't about UC until you think about what UC was or is now becoming. UC is not just about unified communications in an office but in a social, shopping or any other user environment. saw this blog post from Mark Polly of Perficient - click on image for his cool blog posts on customer engagements and other topics.

"The Customer is the New Boss" is Lawrence Dvorchik's theme for Customer Engagement World. But hasn't the customer always been the boss? We always say customer is the boss, but our engagements methods rarely reflect this. Too often companies are trying to engage in a one-way stream of communications to customers and potential customers without having a great way to make that a two-way stream. Craver, senior vice president of strategy at Hudson's Bay Company, opened CEW with his keynote "Harnessing Disruption." First Ryan talked about what he means by disruption. Companies typically talk about how to cause disruption, buy usually come up with marketing programs that don't engage customers directly.

There are 3 key enablers to disruption today:

1 - Connectivity - by 2020 80% of adults will have smartphones.  Think about disruption caused by connected devices and applications - Uber, OpenTable, etc.

2 - Scalability - infinite computing resources are becoming available.

3 - Distribution - limitless touch points and borderless commerce via Amazon, Etsy, etc.

All of these enablers have created customers who demand instant access, instant service and instant deliver.

Ryan identified 3 main disrupting trends:

Channel Irrelevance

- Retail foot traffic has dropped, yet retail sales have remained strong and exceeded inflation.

- Ecommerce is not dictated by age - everyone does it.

- Mobile Commerce is driving eCommerce.  mCommerce is expected to increase by 157% by 2018.

- Eye share has dramatically shifted: In four years, TV has decreased 11% and Online has increased 59%.

- Customer preference for channel varies by department, so you need to cover all channels.  (See A.T. Kearney Omnichannel Shopping Preferences Study July 2014.)

- The net: Each customer has adopted disruption in a different way.

Social Media has become Social Commerce

- Social commerce is finally here after 7-8 years of growth.

- We now spend 37 minutes per day on social networks, eclipsing email and all other forms

- Everyone is bullish on many social networks

Mobile with Location

- Mobile has arrived - in 2014 mobile growth has grown over 500% for accessing digital content

- Apps vs Sites. Time spent on mobile apps is high, but most of that time is spent on gaming, messaging and social media.

- Commerce and Shopping get about 1.5 hours per month and has only grown 12% YOY.

- App selection is overwhelming making it difficult for apps to gain scale.  Apple's store has over 1.5m apps and games and over 80% maybe "zombie" apps.

Courtesy Qualcomm - Note Beacon via Smartphone

- Not a question of one or other, retailers must have both.  Mobile apps and mobile sites are used for different purposes.

- Mobile empowers customers in-store. Customers are willing to share location if provided offers, deals or points. However if you ask them to share their phone number, most will balk at it.

- Using mobile location drives more purposed feet.  Banners conversion is very low. GeoPush based on customer proximity is marginally better, but still low.  Beacons provide much better conversion.

- Net: beacons are driving highly personalized, intent based content and advertisements.

Here are Ryan's key takeaways on how to harness disruption:

1 - Unapologetic pursuit of understanding and satisfying the customer

2 - Adopt innovation as a corporate wide virus

2 - Relentless understanding of market and technology trends impacting the customer.


Bottom-line -

  UC is really a customer social experience as you integrate more apps, devices and social behaviors together. 



Google Crowds into Clouds    


Google Cloud Platform has joined the Level 3 Cloud Connect Solutions ecosystem. Google Cloud Platform enables developers and enterprises to build, test and deploy applications on Google's highly-scalable and reliable infrastructure. Enterprises can access Google Cloud Platform via Google Cloud Interconnect (GCI), which works with network service providers including Level 3 to provide enterprise-grade connections to Google's network edge.

With Level 3 Cloud Connect Solutions and GCI, customers can move private and public workloads to Google Cloud Platform with greater reliability. As part of GCI, Level 3 Cloud Connect Solutions provides connectivity from enterprise offices, data centers and other network resources directly to Google Cloud Platform in North America, Europe, Latin America and Asia. By leveraging Level 3's network services and its multiple diverse high-bandwidth connections with Google, Level 3 Cloud Connect Solutions can provide enterprises with greater performance and reliability than a standard Internet connection. 
Level 3 Cloud Connect Solutions offers multiple ways to connect enterprises with cloud and data center services, including Dedicated Internet Service, High Speed Internet Service, MPLS/IPVPN, Virtual Private Line Service, Ethernet Virtual Private Line, Ethernet Private Line and Wavelength services. - By integrating more and more clouds together you get a real hurricane that is a good thing for customers and allows Level3 to provide more and more end-to-end- services.  While it is not mentioned Level3 is also approved for Lync SIP trunking as well as other platforms.  Click on image for details on MPLS and SIP trunking. 



RCS "Leans Into" VoLTE    


RCS-rich communications service keeps running into the issue of OTT-over-the-top apps and solutions.  There is an inherent conflict and challenge between those who build highways and those who drive over it.  IP networks are the same and neither ever takes the time to bother to understand the other. Here are a few thoughts on this from Amir Zmora (@AmirZmora) VP Alliances & Partnerships for AudioCodes - click on graphic for complete article. 

Amir wrote, "Service providers are continuing the RCS path and believe that once RCS will be fully integrated with the phone as default, users will use it.  

I believe that service providers should manage a mix of "service provider OTT" with RCS in order to remain relevant. Offering only standard RCS capabilities will make differentiation hard as all service providers will offer the same thing with pretty much the same user interface as defined by the GSMA."   Here are few more thoughts Amir had but you really need to read the whole article to capture the complete perspective. 

- VoLTE is happening.

- Service providers that have already launched VoLTE services are starting to experience the complexity of connecting VoLTE to other networks.

- Service providers understand that VoLTE by itself will not provide the required added value services and are looking for those services in RCS. They should combine these with their own OTT services in order to differentiate.  

(click here for complete article).

Bottom-line -  RCS is "leaning into" or running into VoLTE as apps become  more and more complex.  One reason is the app developers really don't know what rich-media is much less where it is going to be in one or two years much less in ten. However RCS developers and network providers need to meetup and "lean into" each other otherwise it will be real mess.



Top-10 Benefits of UC Gamification


Here are a few of the many benefits of rewards/loyalty programs including some thoughts on gamification and future trends: - Drive customers to higher product margins (value propositions) - remix the portfolio by investing in higher value areas and making decisions on existing businesses that no longer support our high value strategy.* In addition, gamification in the form of crowdsourcing has proven successful in product design, development and testing of new products and business strategies.

Click on image for all 10 benefits.





Microsoft Band - No Not That Kind but Cool


Microsoft got in the health game with a new gadget called Microsoft Band. Here are just some of the features: 24-hour heart rate monitor, built-in GPS, calorie tracking, sleep tracking, guided workouts, goal setting, UV monitor, email monitor, calendar, Cortana with Windows 8.1, timer and alarm, social media with Twitter and Facebook, cross-compatible with iOS, Android, and Windows Phone, text messaging, incoming calls, notification, Starbucks app integration, Bluetooth, stop watch, Optical heart rate sensor, 3-axis accelerometer/gyro, Gyrometer, Ambient light sensor, Skin temperature sensor, UV sensor, Capacitive sensor, Galvanic skin response, Haptic vibration motor, Microphone and more. One cool feature is charge cable connector uses a Magnetically-coupled connector to USB.
There is some mention of connecting Band to Kinect and Xbox as there are number of Xbox fitness apps.  No mention of Skype or Lync but does mention incoming calls.   No mention of price either.  As bands, glasses, watches and other bodywear gadgets get into an increasingly over- crowded there is only so much a body can really seriously wear. Click on either image for Microsoft Band website.






One Last Look Things Required for Managing Cross Network Voice Quality type of networks perform differently and so when I was asked to consider this article I explored the issues and having developed VoIP apps one needs to consider not just the CODEC but also how voice is going to perform over the network.  For example Skype performs better on my iPhone and iPad than via my PC.  Notwithstanding the issues of my voice or microphones, the app has been optimized because the smartphone is optimized for voice more so than my PC (at least I think so).  This is a guest commentary from Amir Zmora (@AmirZmora) is VP Alliances & Partnerships for AudioCodes.

(click here for complete article).

Bottom-line -
  VoLTE is not just coming but been here and used in more applications that you have never heard of and will be added easily to any mobile app.  Though video, IM, pic sharing and other features all part of any new app, voice by itself may not be as important except as a medium for streaming music or movies.  QoS, network and security still remain my top concerns in designing any new UC network.  Understanding all the elements like VoLTE, PSTN, GSM, VoIP and others will be key in providing a customer experience that we all can enjoy.




Challenge of IP Address Management (IPAM) for Network Operators by Chris Heyn 

Click on image for Linkedin Profile.

One of the most important driving forces in the growth of the internet is the deployment of Machine to Machine (M2M) devices. Network operators today have to face the challenge of how to provision and activate large numbers of devices in as short a time as possible. In addition, the revenue the device generates is extremely small, as little as $0.05 cents a month.

For this reason, traditional solutions used for IP provisioning are now obsolete, and new systems need to be employed and implemented to ensure that network operators remain competitive and profitable. IP Address Management (IPAM) platforms are the answer as they allow the provisioning of large numbers of devices quickly and efficiently.

5 Key IP Address Manager (IPAM) platform requirements

  • Centralization of IP infrastructure management and monitoring
  • Multi-vendor DHCP-Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol - DNS-Domain Name Service management needs to be consolidated using an integrated, single user interface
  • Any active IP address conflicts need to be detected immediately and preventative alerts generated in real time.
  • Proactive monitoring and the IPAM platform needs to contain rich alerting and reporting features.
  • Historic IP tracking together with real time at-a-glance dashboard visibility is a mandatory feature.

Setting IPAM deployment targets and goals

Simplification is the key to a successful deployment that needs to cover IP address management, as well as your DNS and DHCP administration. A rich set of automation tools needs to be available to work smartly and make troubleshooting and management tasks as easy and intuitive as possible.

The IPAM platform must be able to allow the management of both IPv4 and IPv6 addresses using a single administration platform. The platform needs to do this and more including:

  • Accurate IP subnet maintenance
  • Inventory management
  • DHCP scopes to track, provision, assign and decommission IP addresses in your network

The user interface needs to cater for easy delegation, coordination and accountability of workloads across dispersed admin teams. Adopting this platform approach will effectively reduce troubleshooting time and implement proactive management with real-time monitoring and alerts as standard features.

Top 5 selection criteria for an IPAM platform

1)      A well-designed IP address management software platform is essential; it will save a large amount of time for your team. It can drastically reduce the complexity of managing your IP Address installed base. The IPAM platform will ideally track, manage and monitor both IPv4 and IPv6 address installations. Task completion and the resolution of issues can be achieved rapidly and efficiently as manual intervention is reduced to a minimum as documentation provided by the IPAM platform ensures the use of reliable IP addresses. Projects can benefit from the IPAM platform to allow the team to deploy faster, more accurate, and accountable systems time after time.  


2)      Thanks to the deployment of the IPAM platform unification of multi-vendor DHCP and DNS administration just got easier. One of the most important features of an IPAM platform is the seamless support of all servers regardless of whether they are Cisco, Microsoft or ISC Open Source. IP Addresses wherever they are located need to be found easily by enabling teams configure them from a single console. The IPAM performs this task easily.


3)      IP Address problems must be detected as early as possible to avoid the risk of network disruption. The IPAM will work proactively to find issues automatically and then resolve them. This feature covers the detection of non-available IP addresses caused by full subnets.


4)      The IPAM platform allows independent management of DNS, DHCP and IP Subnets. Every management team can manage the address blocks it owns, subnets and DNS and DHCP services without impacting other teams. Implementing role-based administration is strongly recommended, in this way you reduce downtime caused by human errors and streamline user delegation.

5)      IPAM gives you a total radar picture that allows you to anticipate potential IP address conflicts, full DHCP scopes and the risk of DNS mismatches. You can complete IP address changes easily and successfully and therefore manage the IP address growing challenges in the most effective manner confident that your IPAM platform will generate the most successful results.



  • M2M device growth has thrown up the biggest challenge to network operators to deploy working trouble free new IP addresses on a shoestring budget.
  • Manual methods of tracking and managing IP addresses are no longer an option because of their cumbersome nature and risk of disruption caused by human error.
  • The time when individuals had time to search for data spread across data held in multiple source silos has now run out where there is a constant risk that the data contained is already out of date.
  • For this reason, the IPAM platform is a mandatory element in the network operators' arsenal of management tools.

Bottom-line - Get your hands on IPAM evaluation platforms that ready for you right now.  I do not work or have any business relationships with these companies so this information is given freely as free advice to get you started, each link gives you an access to a free trial of their IPAM platform. Here's a few options Bluecatnetworks, Solarwinds and Infowblox.  

Click here to email Chris.  



Skype Gets Faster with Qik and Exorcized by Jon Stewart   


In an already overly crowded UC space comes Qik from Microsoft.  However, they have a huge advantage just like when Facebook bought WhatsApp - huge user base.  Now no app is a guaranteed success and again does the world need another photo sharing app probably not.  Here is what Microsoft says, "Imagine if you could reinvent the Skype experience, taking into account how messaging, selfies and app culture have changed the way we communicate. small team of Skype designers and developers recently took up the challenge to build a new app to run alongside Skype and provide an ongoing form of video chat. They knew they had to create something mobile and lightweight, as spontaneous as messaging but as intimate as calling. And it had to be fun and easy to use. What they created was Skype Qik, and we're so excited to share it with you today.  Each video lasts exactly 2 weeks. And if you send a message by mistake, or don't like the video, don't panic! You can erase any video you've sent from the chat, whether it's been watched it or not. If you don't want to receive messages from someone, you have the ability to block contacts on Android and Windows Phone. feature will be available on iPhone in the coming months."  Guess they are trying to pretend Apple doesn't exist or potentially finding that Apple won't approve it either.   

There is a one feature worth noting but not unique - more like a Snapchat knockoff is Qik Flik. They're like GIFs you record yourself - little 5 second videos you can send with just a tap. We start you out with a couple, but you can record and store your own Qik Fliks so you're ready to respond to anything. This feature is available on Android and iPhone and is coming to Windows Phone in the coming months.  And, while this sounds to contradict availability on iPhone; they should have listed what features are available today and those who knows when.  Click on either image for Skype website. 


Meanwhile Jon Steward and the Daily Show were given a rare treat of giving a product endorsement for Skype.  I doubt that anyone would call it that but it nice to think that there is no such as bad PR and having your product seen by anyone with millions of fans and globally by the Catholic Church can't be all that bad. Click on image for The Daily Show episode.

Bottom-line -
  Qik is an add-on to Skype trying to keep Skype relevant not caring what Twitter-Vine, Facebook-Whatsapp, Snapchat, Viber and so many others are doing.  Regarding Jon Stewart, it is too funny and shows that whenever you think of how or what people will do with you product they will figure out something you could have never imagined or even help the unholy aka unfans/unfollowers.



Customer Rewards Programs Via Mobile UC Gamification

In the spirit of full disclose this is an app I am working on based on a customer request.  This app is designed for enhance, build incentives (gamification) and maintain/support the rewards program for iOS (iPhone/iPad/iWatch), Android, Windows and PC/MAC platforms.   The client found our expertise based on our apps and wanted to enhance their own rewards program with some UC features.  This app is not finished but we can customize the features for your own uses.

   Customized Scoreboards based on industry, sport or event.
Add customer to user chat and/or user to user chat.
Add "push notifications" to engage, remind and alert users.
Indepth administrative features (not shown here) customized to integrate with POS-point of sales systems, database and other IT systems as well as standalone.
We can also design and build other app for other business and consumer uses. Inquire for examples.



Stop Interruptions "Office Drivebys"    


Just when you think the world is too complicated comes this really simple and elegantly easy to use product called Busylight.  As the business world moves to more open office concepts and headsets - many users complain about interruptions. While no one is trying to be rude, the reality is that you just don't know when someone is on a call or heads-down on a project. Busylight provides that visual indicator displaying user's Lync Presence to let others know their availability. The result is better collaboration in the office offering companies true business value in productivity gains. Busylight works with Lync and other SIP platforms.  In addition, unlike so many products they have real customers, really happy ones too.

Here are some customer references:

- "We have around 1,000 Busylights installed and expect the overall deployment to be 3,000.  Our users really like the Busylight.  The sound and visual indicator compliments the headset and it has helped secure headset usage at over 95%." John Clayton, Principal Officer (IT), Kirklees Council

- "A great device for someone who misses Lync calls and doesn't like being interrupted when in a call." Tom Arbuthnot (Microsoft MVP)

"15 per cent of employees cite distractions by colleagues as a drain on productivity. Busylight is a solution for that." Microsoft Lync team are some of the key benefits:

- Reduces costly, unwanted interruptions by co-workers

- Creates awareness and acceptance of 'presence'

- Gives employees control over their availability

- Saves walking to busy colleagues in the office

Bottom-line - Here's a product with a real bottom-line benefit and click on any image for their incredible free trial offers and even an SDK for developers to be even more creative.



T-Mobile CEO Mobilizes via Twitter to Compete 

Courtesy -  GeekWire

 (click on image for complete article) -

 How T-Mobile CEO John Legere uses Twitter to stay ahead of rivals  "The truth is, I learn almost everything I need to know to run T-Mobile in there," he told an audience at the GeekWire Summit earlier this week. "On the email from individual customers or on Twitter. I take every Tweet that comes in and I read it. I forward it to people.

My executive team gets them, we reply, and at my staff meeting every Tuesday, we track social media impressions, what they are and how we've responded to them. It takes a ton of time, it's a lot of fun. You got to be real, and you got to be out there. But I am having a ball with it." 



One Last Look WebRTC "As Is" Reality Check     


While WebRTC continues to ramp up the hype around browser communications in a mobile app driven world, I like to think that any technology has a place if users want it.  However, dare I say it marketing may not be enough as users flock to SnapChat, WhatsApp and others but distain from more traditional practical apps on PCs.

This graphic says it all with more platforms and APIs than deadly viruses all like to claim they will cure your development problems "as if" that is the Holy Grail but more like the "golden fleece."   However, Temasys did put forth a great reality check on the issues.  This is what they said:

- Feature parity across user platforms not fully developed
- Standard natively supported in Firefox and Chrome, soon Opera
- Data channel & Peer-to-Peer often blocked by network operators
- Reference implementation is not scalable
- Fear, Uncertainty and Doubt (FUD)
     - Two competing video codec standards
     - Intellectual property and licensing issues
- Mobile devices require native web apps (excl. Chrome on Android)
- Lack of innovation and creativity around use cases
     - Many "replacements" or "extensions" to older technology
     - Everyone wants to reinvent Skype
- Limited developer frameworks, APIs, and platforms that really deliver the promise
of WebRTC
- So far, no "Amazon Web Services of WebRTC

Temasys announced this to help bridge the gap and fill in the major reality check that Apple and Microsoft are not onboard with WebRTC. 

Temasys WebRTC plugin for Internet Explorer, Safari now available for licensing by services providers and developers - click on either image for their website.   

Yet the opportunity and probable need still exists for key applications as they point out like:
- Enable faster and better applications
- Multiplayer gaming
- File & document sharing and collaboration
- Screen sharing
- Financial transactions
- Near-HD video with low bandwidth
- Content delivery
Clearly there are great opportunities by the telcoms and others to gain in this marketspace like this:

Bottom-line - IMHO a few things need to occur.  Simplified development and delivery and user-driven, not telco-driven user demand.  Temasys may have the key as they have a real grasp of reality.



Lync Apps and Twitter Accounts


Here is a start at compiling a list of all the Lync app providers and their Twitter accounts. If you are keen on Lync please follow them and @techtionary to get into the social media game.  If you are not listed or have additional Twitter accounts please email us.     


Note: Some companies also provide Professional Services and applications may support other PBX systems


Gains/losses are for month of September 2014 from 9-1 to 10-2. 




Twitter Name



CA Technologies
























Modality Systems




























Enabling Technologies




















ACS Lync
























CTI Group
















Ferrari Electronic
















































Bridge Communication




























Dolphin Norway








































Calero Software








CVT (Australia)





Don't be shy if you have any comments or want to do your own OPED, please send them to 



Why A TECH Twitter Scoreboard ~135,00+ new users a day signing up for Twitter and 271 million monthly active users with 500 million Twitter posts are sent per day and 78% of Twitter active users are on mobile, Twitter is "the" means for nearly all aspects of your business including human resources. If you are still not convinced of the importance of Twitter for your business click one image for article on Top-10 reasons for using Twitter for your business.  


If you still doubt the power of Twitter here are some recent news headlines regarding Twitter and social media.  


- An IBM sales study indicates that 75% of B2B buyers are likely to use social media as part of their purchasing decision.


- Via Linkedin - "By 2015 50% of buyer-seller-support interaction will happen through social media by 2020 it will be 85%." 


- Via @NPR radio "AC Nielsen reports that 87% of Twitter users surveyed make #buying decisions based on #Twitter posts and followers.


In today's business world, you are measured by many factors including the number of Twitter followers you have.  In fact many surveys have found that websites in general are perceived as passive customer communication tools with Twitter being a far more proactive customer-engaging tool.  These surveys have also found an increasing number of customers go to your Twitter account before they go to your website doing "due diligence" on you looking for call-to-actions, thought leadership and content useful in their purchasing as well as customer complaints regarding your solution.  Your client may not have a Twitter business account but they may have a personal account and their advisors may as well. Twitter Scoreboard
Here comes a new tool. The Tech Scoreboard is designed to give you a benchmark of your Twitter performance as you can't force people to Follow you and according to an increasing number of sources - customers visit your Twitter before they go to your website.  Gaining "meaningful followers" is a voluntary one, it is a good measure of "good will" you have in the marketplace you serve.


Categories for Companies & CEOs Listed

Master Agencies/VARs | Distributors | Dealers | Professional & Managed Services | Outsourcing | Telephone Companies | Internet Service Providers | Carriers | Transit | Peering | Wholesale | Co-Location | Cable | Broadband | Data Centers | Cloud | Hosting | PBX/IP/SBC, Cloud/Hosted Communications | VoIP/SIP Trunking | Cloud APIs Apps | Saas-Paas | Contact Center Solutions | SDN-Software Defined Networks & NFV-Network Functions Virtualization - Bandwidth Management | Phones and Special Devices | Security | Specialty | Management | Billing | Call Accounting | Microsoft Lync Apps | WebRTC | OSS | TEM | Payment Processing | Chat-Pic Apps | Collaboration | MDM-Mobile Device Management


Bottom-line - Twitter is a must-have for customer service and the fastest, best way to post promotions, press, products, specials, buzz, events, reports, support issues and more.

 Today, Lyncosphere - "Lync Visualized" is released.

Click on image for Lyncosphere (uses Flash)


After a lot of beta testing and feedback this new microsite that is designed for indepth explanations and explorations of Lync by providers of Lync solutions and applications. 

Here are some view comments: 


"Lyncosphere is an innovative way to help sales, channel and end users "see" how Lync works. This really helps me engage with customers faster and get solutions understood by all the decision-makers."

                              - Matt Jolly - Senior Support Engineer


"Lyncosphere visualizes how Lync works and helps you understand which 3rd party Lync solutions are available to provide additional functionality to your Lync environment." 

                              - Rui Maximo - CEO


"This is a very good - well done indeed, it would be of great use to both channel partners and end users evaluating Lync."

     - Douglas Green Publisher, TelecomReseller/Usernews Publications - The World's Leading News Source for Unified Communications, Collaboration and Cloud 



#NotOneMore - IM Voice - Broadcast Alerts - Personal Alarms - Group Chat

As the need to protect staff, students, customers, visitors and others increases, there is a corresponding need for mobile apps to add some level of notification and emergency communication.  iPeerSafe is a personal and peer safety and social networking alert and chatting app allowing users to add text, images and audio recordings for iPhone, iPad or iTouch.


Key features:

- Personal Panic Alarm with posting text, images, color-coding priorities and audio recordings to Facebook, Twitter, email and emergency calling


- Broadcast Alert with text, images, audio recordings and color-coded highlights to all users in same school


- Class Assignment feature for class work projects and collaboration as well as teacher-student chatting


- School/college peer, group, parent and global chatting - Journal-Diary - private and shareable notepads on Twitter, Facebook, Linkedin, Instagram and Email as well as doodlepad graphics tool


- Weather from local area


- Calendar with more than 70 icons to indicate type of meeting and reminders  


Please visit for tips, applications and ideas.





Bottom-line - I have completed  a brief exploration of findings in research in more than 30 citations regarding both real and online safety dealing with other persons of potentially harmful and deadly threats including bullying and cyberbullying.





Click here  for Top-10 Tips for Personal & Peer Safety in School, Business, Campus and Public Settings.


Need help with a Microsoft - Unified Communications channel sales and marketing communications strategy

click on image. 


Follow us on Twitter


Click on Linkedin logo to join group.

 Issue - Restricting Remote Access to Only Corporate-Issued Computers



Corporate security policies require employees to use only corporate-issued computers to connect to the corporate network. Personal devices aren't permitted to connect to internal resources. How can I enforce security policies for users connecting to Lync Server from a sanctioned computer?



By configuring the Security Edge Filter and Security Web Filter to block NTLM authentication requests as well as restricting authentication requests from only authorized Active Directory domains, the Security Filters prevent users from connecting to Lync Server from a non-corporate issued computer at the network perimeter.



Lync Server when published to the Internet are susceptible to many types of attacks. Without a solution such as the Security Edge Filter and Security Web Filter, user accounts can easily be locked out in Active Directory Domain Services, passwords can be brute-forced, internal Lync Server resources can be consumed unnecessarily by DDoS attacks, Lync meeting attendees can be hacked by cross-site scripting (XSS) attacks, and many more attacks (SOAP, XML, etc.) as shown in the following figure. 


With the Security Edge Filter and Security Web Filters, attacks can be blocked at the network perimeter as illustrated in the following diagram.




Top-10 Tips for #Hast Tags 


Click on image for complete article 


Certified Training - Affordable, Available, Actionable & Tax Deductible 


WebRTC-SIP Certification, Social Media Contact Centers, Sales Professionals and Business

Custom and Complete SIP Professional Certification Program  

Certified SIP Professional and Senior Certified SIP Technical Professional Testing Now Available


Click on image for details.  TECHtionary is proud to announce the availability of two SIP certification testing and online, online and webinar training programs.  The CSP-Certified SIP Professional certification is designed to review and test general and some technical knowledge with 50 questions.  The Senior Certified SIP Technical Professional (SCSTP)  examination is designed to test advanced technical skills in SIP. The exam consists of 70 multiple choice and true-false questions.  Both tests are designed to help in planning, design, implementation, network assessment as well as security, diagnostics and troubleshooting. 


Some though certainly not all of the topics on the Senior Certified SIP Technical Professional examination include: CODEC, DSP, Clipping, dipping, Queuing Delay, Network Propagation, Serialization, Buffer Delay, Fragmentation, Interleaving, Voice Payload, HSRP, Adaptive Jitter Buffer, Oversubscription, Voice Activity Detector, White Noise, Comfort Noise, Noise Detectors, MOS, E-model, Nyquist-Shannon, Framing, PCM, ADPCM, DSP, CODEC sampling, Transcoding, Tandem encoding, Echo, Echo Loss, Short Tail, Hybrid, SNR, CNR, RFI, Crosstalk, Shared Neutrals, RTCP-XR, SRTP, MD5, CMP, POE, 802.1P, ALG, MSRP, IMS, WebRTC-Apps, SALT, SAML, Voice XML, RPC, BICC, ISUP, IP Multimedia Subsystems and other topics.

If you need iPhone, iPad, Android or Windows phone apps custom built for your business applications or new ideas, we have proven experience and U.S. based product/project management.  Click on image for more. 



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