It's become conventional wisdom in the VoIP/IP telephony/UC security space that the major vulnerability for voice-over-IP traffic today remains the simple fact that it runs on IP infrastructures that may be the targets of attacks that have been plaguing data networks for years. In other words, all those exotic types of attacks with names like SPIT (spam over IP telephony); VOMIT (voice over misconfigured IP telephony); or eavesdropping via packet capture -- these have not yet materialized to any
Gigabit Ethernet Switching for $40 a Port
The move to commoditization occurs incessantly in high tech. Consequently, small and medium businesses now find themselves able to purchase managed Gigabit Ethernet links for the price of a good meal.
UC Vendors As Services Companies
I mentioned in last Friday's post that Unified Communications is expected to require much more systems integration work than traditional telecom implementations. That's directly related to the fact that communications is becoming more of a software business and less of a hardware business. It also means that many of the "hardware" vendors of the past are trying to imitate IBM's successes of the last deca
A look back at five years on the storage beat
Social Media Hits Critical Mass: How Will Your Latest Hires Communicate?
A recent study indicates that more than half of all adults rely on some form of social media to communicate not just with friends and family, but also with their colleagues. And in the 18 to 34 year old adult category (the adult term is used very loosely here) those numbers climb way higher. All this means one thing: Those new employees you are planning in hiring will be communicating in all sorts of different ways.
The True UC Market Is Tiny...Today
I've been watching the Unified Communications market since it began two years ago, and one of the things that everybody's been trying to figure out is how to quantify the market and characterize how fast it's moving and where it might be headed. This week, Blair Pleasant of COMMfusion and UCstrategies.com delivered a great contribution to this emerging body of knowledge. The executive summary and TOC are
Mystery And Margin
Over at No Jitter, consultant Gary Audin has posted a blog based on a new report that looks at IT services costs. The report, from the OnForce analyst firm, finds that VoIP is by far the most expensive IT component to service; the average VoIP work order is more than half again as expensive as the next-highest category, wiring and cabling, which of course also can be a
Will Enterprises Buy Hosted UC?
This week the carriers are having their big show in Las Vegas, NXTComm, so we're seeing announcements like this one from Nortel, of a joint solution with Microsoft for carrier-hosted Unified Communications. The focus of that particular release is SMBs, which have generally been the target market for hosted services. There's an ongoing debate about whether larg
Time to Get Ready for 100G bps Ethernet?
Faster speeds are an ongoing desire among small and medium businesses. While many companies are now settling in with 10G bps backbone Ethernet links, the movement to 100G bps Ethernet has begun to take shape.
You've Already Got Communications-Enabled Business Processes
Communications-Enabled Business Processes, or CEBP, is one of the hot buzzwords in enterprise communications. Many people see CEBP as the Holy Grail of communications technology, something that may be attained years from now. But, in fact, you have CEBP in your enterprise now. It's called PBX features.
Who Makes The UC Buying Decision?
Forrester Research has a new report out that offers some insights into the communications technologies that enterprises are adopting -- and are still holding off on. There's also a provocative data point on how involved business unit executives are in Unified Communications purchases.
D'Ambrosio Steps Down From Avaya, Citing Medical Reasons
Avaya announced today that its president and CEO, Lou D'Ambrosio, is stepping down due to "medical reasons" (about which no further details were given), and that he'll be replaced on an interim basis by Charlie Giancarlo, who left Cisco late last year to join the private equity firm, Silver Lake Partners, that acquired Avaya almost exactly one year ago. The Avaya announcement is here and
Telepresence: Hype or Revolution?
One of the hottest topics in Unified Communications is video, and specifically the high-definition, high-end experience known as telepresence. HP and Polycom make telepresence systems, but the concept really took off in the market when Cisco announced its version of the technology almost 2 years ago.
Contact Centers As The UC Killer App
If you're looking for early-adopter scenarios of Unified Communications, your best bet is probably to watch what happens in enterprise contact centers (or call centers, as they used to be known). Contact centers are frequently at the cutting edge of communications technologies, as occurred with computer-telephony integration (CTI)--a comparison that understandly makes UC advocates a little nervous.
The Need For Interoperability
One of the major discussions in UC has to do with the need for interoperability. The legacy voice world is highly proprietary, built around PBXs that speak vendor-specific protocols understood only by that vendor's telephones. A lot of people like to compare the PBX to the mainframe computer, and suggest that, just as in computing, the end station will become untethered, hardware will become commoditized, and everything will reside in software. That may, in fact, turn out to be the end state, bu
Organizational Challenges For UC
The convergence of voice and data onto a single network has required some significant changes to the IT organization. But those changes may pale beside the effort that will be required to get the enterprise IT shop ready to implement and support Unified Communications.
Does UC Improve Productivity?
The whole reason for Unified Communications, it's believed, is that UC makes your workers and your business processes more efficient and productive. But productivity benefits are almost always tough to quantify and measure reliably, and that's certainly the case with UC.
What Is Unified Communications?
Since this is a new blog, I'll start with a very quick introduction: I'm the co-chairman of VoiceCon, the leading conference on enterprise real-time communications/UC. I'm also editor of a TechWeb site called No Jitter, which runs blog postings and in-depth features on IP telephony, UC, and converged networking. I used to be the editor of Business Communications Review, which many of you may remember, and whic