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Sparking Conversations

Cisco’s Spark service overlaps with the company’s UC and TelePresence solutions. For example, all three solutions support video conferencing. Last June at CiscoLive, the company provided a glimpse of how Spark will transition from overlap to glue. In his keynote Rowan…

iOS9 Makes Tim Cook Look Exciting

IOS9 is out. This is the latest and greatest iPhone and iPad release from Apple. It was part of a “monster” announcement Apple recently made. The benefits of IOS9 are pretty negligible. It’s Apple’s most boring release, ever! You still…

Blabbing with Kevin #Skype4B

I did another Blab – this time with Kevin Kieller and we blabbed about Microsoft Skype for Business.  I asked him some tough questions like why IM doesn’t always work.  Matt Landis also popped in. This Blab had a technical difficulty…

Wanted: A Modern Cloud IVR

I have been looking in vain for a small-business friendly IVR portal. Something we can build telephone menus in the cloud, with a little bit of interactivity. It needs to be cheap, simple, and have a low learning curve. I…

Time for Channel Specialization

The traditional dealer or VAR is no longer just competing with a handful of firms in the same city, but a globe of providers on the same planet. As products turn into services the margins disappear. What’s happening is the general practitioner model for business communications is getting strangled.

Cell Phones and VoIP

When I walk into my office, my cell phone instantly links with my office phone. As long as I am in my office I never pull my phone out of my pocket. Incoming calls ring on the desk phone. I…

Telling My Wife What Apple Announced

My wife called me, all excited. “So what did Apple announce?” I answered: “Not much. An improved iPhone camera and a bigger iPad and a new Apple TV gaming device.” It was then that I realized my disappointment. This was…

Kubi Wins by a Neck

Revolve Robotics’ tabletop telepresence bot is a new, affordable approach to an old problem.

Favorite Apps

Contrary to popular opinion, communications apps are not all the same. Some are designed to work with phones, and some are designed to replace phones. Some apps even run on phones. While there is certainly a lot of overlap among…

Press 9 for TDD

Complying with the Americans with disabilities Act (ADA) means providing reasonable accommodation to persons with disabilities. This includes supporting TDD terminals (Telecommunications Devices for the Deaf.) I am utterly surprised that every company doesn’t support TDDs. It’s super simple to…

Predictions We Got Wrong

In this Industry Buzz podcast, the UCStrategies Experts address failed predictions. Where did we miss the boat entirely, or when has the rate of adoption not met expectations? Blair Pleasant moderates the discussion with Art Rosenberg, J.R. Simmons, Jon Arnold, Phil Edholm, and Kevin Kieller. Among the topics discussed are enterprise social software, voice recognition, CEBP, WebRTC, Google, personal agents, and federation.

Privacy: Expectations and Reality

Colin here. It surprises me that people don’t understand when the constitution applies and when it does not. This is very relevant in today’s privacy-sensitive world with the NSA wanting to see everything. The constitution’s 4th amendment prevents the government…

Words of the Times

My spell checker will no longer recognize the word “dialtone.” It is so uncommonly used that it has been removed from many dictionaries. It used to be accepted as a single word. Now, you must use “dial tone” as two…

Polycom’s Legacy

I associate Polycom with great phones – first the analog saucers, then the SoundPoint IP phones, and now the VVX series of personal devices. It is not just my opinion either. In recent Q2-15 earnings report the company reported its…

Overcoming UC Limitations

A new breed of communications and collaboration tools aims to take the pain out of enterprise communications — inside and outside the company, across modalities, and in real time.

Why Companies Succeed: Price/Performance

I have worked for big and small companies over my decades long career. I have seen companies destroyed and new ones emerge. And I have seen patterns. The common pattern that I see is that companies succeed when they can…

Blabbing with Zeus

Zeus and I lost our virginity together – we did our first Blab. Blab is where video conferencing and social media intersect. We talked about Workstream Communications and Collaboration and jointly addressed several questions and topics including: How is WCC different…

Stupid Fone Systems

Phone systems are stupid and terrible for callers. I rail about phone systems and how unfriendly they are for users. The folks inside phone system companies immediately talk about how easy their systems are to use. Sometimes they will get out…

Mobile Considerations in Enterprise Communications

In this Industry Buzz podcast, the UCStrategies Experts address mobile UC: working mobile, and mobile clients. Participating are Dave Michels, Michael Finneran, Marty Parker, Phil Edholm, Kevin Kieller, Steve Leaden, Art Rosenberg, Dr. Joseph Williams, Blair Pleasant, and Don Van Doren.

Back to the Dark Ages

It used to be that you could count on phone service in a power failure or emergency. You can’t anymore. You also can’t count on your cable, internet ISP, or cellular company. In the days of the Bell System monopoly…