paidContent.org recently ran a piece on the current licensing dispute between eBay (owner of Skype) and Joltid (licensor of the P2P technology Skype uses).
If you did not know, Skype uses Peer-2-Peer technology as their transport medium of voice and video. I will not use this blog posting to go into the technical and juridical issues about how scary Skype can be.
What is interesting to take a look at is The Ecosystem that is flourishing around Skype.
Grandstream is soon going to release the GXV3140 IP Multimedia Phone.
This is more than a telephone. It is a multi-communication unit. It seems to do everything you will need regarding communication.
This is not a review of the GXV3140. My experience with Grandstream so far is the BudgeTone series and extensive visits to their CeBIT Hannover booth for the past years.
This is a post about the crossover between telephony and something else.
Based on a nice discussion with folks om Twitter (@kencamp, @SherylBreuker, @Bernals & @seanwilder) I confronted the question about Hosted PBX vs Google Voice (nee Grand Central) vs on premise PBX.
I have on several occasions said that Google Voice, in it current incarnation, is not very innovative. The functionality of Google Voice is found in both PBXes, but also service providers are having those features.
However, Google Voice is a very good start on letting users control their own telephony - even if it lack a feature or two.
The question that is valid just before Google Voice goes from closed beta to public release is how will the Hosted PBX and the on premise PBX measure up?
For those of you who do not know G.107 - the full title of the ITU recommendation is The E-model, a computational model for use in transmission planning.
The interesting thing about this recommendation is that is really a way of computing the Mean Opinion Score for a telephone conversation.
Ken Camp states that Less is More and the value of following few people on Twitter. It is a well written piece that a lot of people should read - and then re-read - and then try to understand.
Actually - I believe that it is not the number that is the issue here, it is the quality of the people you follow. This may seems like a no-brainer for old timers for (non-verbal) communication - but it is really not a no-brainer for a lot of people. I have seen the same of Facebook - people collect contacts. Even on LinkedIn some people collect contacts.
In principle I do agree with Ken that quality trumps quantity any time of day. However, there are exception to the rule. I do follow a very few people that are following a couple of thousands people. My reason for following these people are not that I need them to listen to what I have to say. I really do not care if people listen to what I have to say - it is not important for me personally. I do follow these people simply because they provide high quality content.
On the other hand - if people decide to follow me I do sincerely hope that it is because that I contribute good content. That is fine with me. It does not boost my ego - it does not boost my self confidence (yes - I know I am an arrogant pri*k). I contribute because I seriously believe that I have something worth reading. If not, I rather shut up.
One issue is the current crop of Twitter clients (in lack of a better word). Most (all?) clients do not support something as simple as filtering. Unless there are filtering capabilities built into those clients sooner or later people will move on to less crowded services. If I had such capabilities today I could have filters for "friends and family" and then work related matters (which is my primary reason why I use Twitter). I can not ditch my friends and families from my Twitter feed. I also refuse to have more than one Twitter account.
Will termination fees still be alive when everyone is interconnecting via VoIP?
A lot of VoIP operators is really a fancy re-seller of other PSTN operators services. This means that they do not see any revenue on termination fees - the one who sees termination fees are their SS7 partners. For sure the VoIP operators would love to get termination fees - but currently this means that they either need to make special deals with their SS7 provider, or they need to implement SS7 themselves.
Is not one of the major points about becoming av VoIP operator is to circumvent SS7 and trouble the Big Bad Telcos?
I do follow the trixbox community closely. I believe that trixbox is one reason why a lot of "PBX Built On Asterisk" companies will never have a chance in the long run.
So it is with quite some interest that I read a posting from Kerry Garrison in the trix box forum about a "fork" of the FreePBX front end.
The main reason stated is:
1. integrated GUI (so it looks professional when you sell it to your customers)
2. faster bug fixing
3. new features
Fixing the GUI so that it does at least appear more integrated with itself is paramount. Every time I work with the FreePBX GUI I do feel that it is a bunch of non-related packages thrown together.
It is also quoted that "We are utilizing what we call the patch-plus model (what we do with Asterisk, as well). This means that as future versions of Asterisk and FreePBX come out, we simply grab that code and apply our elaborate patch-plus script to it, and *wallah* you have the latest and greatest of FreePBX *plus* the latest and greatest of trixbox CE all in one interface." My question is - how long are they going to do that rather than create a clean fork. I have no reason not doubt that Fonality is trying to do the Right Thing - until proven otherwise I firmly believe that they are good guys.
For the sake of FreePBX I really hope the developers does not loose faith over this decision. For the FreePBX project this is a good thing - they get help fixing a lot outstanding issues. It is of course up to the FreePBX project to incorporate what they see fit into their own project.
In my opinion this could be a big win-win situation.