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News Archive - December 2006

AT&T and BellSouth Join to Create a Premier Global Communications Company
December 29, 2006
AT&T closed its acquisition of BellSouth Corporation, creating a premier global communications company committed to driving convergence, continued innovation, and competition in the communications and entertainment market.
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US: Residential VoIP Users Number More Than 9 Million
December 22, 2006
Residential users continue to adopt VoIP at a rapid rate, with more than 9 million households using the service at the end of the second quarter.
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ITU to Distribute Standards Free of Charge
December 21, 2006
Many people in the telecommunication industry have pressed for the ITU to make its standards documents available free of charge. Well, the long wait is over. Starting January 2, 2007 the ITU will make its standards documents available to the public free of charge.
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Video Fuels Ericsson's $2.1B Redback Buy
December 20, 2006
Ericsson's plan to buy Redback Networks for $2.1 billion is a sign of how the popularity of Internet video is expected to drive demand for broadband network upgrades.
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Hackers unleash worm that targets Skype
December 20, 2006
Hackers have released a worm that attacks Skype, security experts warn.
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Nortel's $2B CDMA Bump
December 20, 2006
Verizon Wireless has inked a five-year, $2 billion extension of Nortel's deal to provide CDMA infrastructure and services for the number two U.S. mobile operator.
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FCC Approves Telco-Friendly Video Rules
December 20, 2006
The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) approved new rules that will let phone companies gain local video franchise rights as soon as three months after they file an application.
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VocalTec Announces a US Patent for Transmitting Packets
December 19, 2006
VocalTec announced that the United States Patent and Trademark Office has informed VocalTec that it has been granted with a US patent number 7,142,506: "Method and apparatus for transmitting packets". This patent allows for adjusting the voice codec or bit-rate used based on observed delay and jitter. — With all due respect to Vocaltel, which did open up doors for VoIP to grow, how can they be granted a patent on technology that existed as far back as at least 1995?
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Swisscom pays Vodafone for mobile stake
December 19, 2006
Swisscom will repurchase a 25 percent stake in Swisscom Mobile from Britain's Vodafone Group for 4.25 billion Swiss francs ($3.5 billion) in a long-awaited deal to fortify its home market position.
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Skype to Announce Disruptive Pricing Strategy for SkypeOut
December 19, 2006
The new pricing strategy will provide over 136 million registered Skype users with more exciting and cost-effective ways of keeping in touch with their friends and family across the world. — We cannot help but be impressed by that user count.
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Skype Feels Pressure to Pay Its Way
December 19, 2006
Some recent changes at Skype show that the IM/VoIP company is under the gun to justify the $2.6 billion price eBay paid for it 15 months ago.
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Codian looks to push high-def videoconferencing into the enterprise
December 18, 2006
Videoconferencing infrastructure vendor Codian unveiled a high-definition upgrade to its networking bridge, the Multi-point Control Unit (MCU) 4500. The bridge works with endpoints from other vendors and provides high-definition video at 30 frames per second.
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FCC's McDowell (Again) Declines to Vote
December 18, 2006
Commissioner Robert McDowell surprised many again by refusing to take part in an FCC vote on the merger of AT&T and BellSouth.
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VoIP market growing fast in Europe
December 15, 2006
The market for enterprise IP telephony infrastructure in Western Europe continues to grow. Sales for IP phones and switching systems both increased during the third quarter of 2006 with total revenues rising by 4.3% to around $580M.
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MessageLabs: Expect increase in VoIP, social networking attacks in 2007
December 15, 2006
VoIP hacking attacks will surge next year as more businesses implement the technology, according to one message security vendor.
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US Vonage users get VoIP emergency lifeline
December 15, 2006
Vonage said that over 93% of its US subscriber lines are now equipped with the Enhanced 911 (E911) emergency calling service.
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Cingular turns cell phones into wallets in N.Y. trial
December 14, 2006
Some Cingular Wireless cardholders in New York City will be testing a new service that allows them to make purchases with their cell phones.
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Cisco Kills Initial IMS Platform
December 14, 2006
Cisco is killing off its first real products aimed at mobile and wireline operators that wanted to support IMS.
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Nokia Siemens JV in Jeopardy
December 14, 2006
A corruption scandal that includes charges of money-laundering via Greece and Lichtenstein has thrown a spanner into the works of the merger that would create the world's second-largest vendor of wireless infrastructure.
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YouTube dominates discussions at Cisco conference
December 13, 2006
In the wake of the launch of its Telepresence high-definition video conferencing product, a senior executive of Cisco suggested his company may become better known for its video products than for its original core business in high-end switching and routing.
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Small companies embracing VoIP
December 13, 2006
Small companies are keen to embrace VoIP, but still aren’t seeing the real advantages of convergence.
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Rival claims video system similar to but one-third price of TelePresence
December 13, 2006
Cisco says its Telepresence line of video conferencing hardware provides an experience similar to an in-person meeting, but LifeSize claims it provides a similar experience for one-third the cost. — One cannot even compare these two product offerings. They really are vastly different.
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Tekelec Still Seeking Switch Suitors
December 13, 2006
Tekelec began looking six weeks ago for somebody to buy its underperforming switching business, but so far no suitor has emerged. — Are we to be surprised by this?
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Microsoft's Office Communications Server Targets Business VoIP Users
December 12, 2006
Microsoft's ongoing effort in VoIP telephony moved into clearer focus as the software company unveiled plans to conduct an ambitious beta test centered on its Office Communications Server with links to its 2007 Microsoft Office applications.
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VoIP Is Handling Peering Pressure Quite Well
December 12, 2006
The recent run of stories and news concerning VoIP peering is a subtle but real signal that the new telephone platform has arrived.
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BT Confirms WiMax Ambitions
December 12, 2006
Domestic reports out of the U.K. confirm that BT looks set to re-enter the mobile market using WiMax or similar wireless broadband technology.
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Polycom Announces IMS Strategy
December 11, 2006
Polycom announced support for the IMS architecture and standards. In the first half of 2007, Polycom plans to deliver a series of IMS architected products that will enable service providers to deliver next generation conferencing and collaboration services to enterprises, small businesses and consumers.
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Talkster Network Bridges Mobilr and VoIP Services
December 11, 2006
Business mobility company Talkster unveiled a VoIP network that allows users to place calls from ordinary mobile phones to traditional and next generation voice services.
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Indian Government Moving To Regulate VoIP?
December 11, 2006
The Indian Government is reportedly preparing a crackdown on VoIP services, citing security risks and loss of revenue.
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Is the IMS Honeymoon Over?
December 8, 2006
Telecom operators are moving on from the hype surrounding IMS and refocusing on ways they can build and deliver new services now, according to a senior executive at Microsoft.
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Sprint Brings VoIP to the Farm
December 8, 2006
Sprint Nextel is helping cable companies push VoIP service into some of the smallest markets in America, but rural incumbent telcos haven't exactly laid out the welcome mat.
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BT Flogs Its NGN Smarts
December 6, 2006
BT launched 21C Global Venture, a new business unit that aims to cash in on the British carrier's NGN experience by selling its know-how to other carriers. — Ah! This is how you make money on the NGN! That makes sense, I guess... it seems to be about the only way.
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Qualcomm warns Nokia over royalty payment spat
December 6, 2006
U.S. wireless technology firm Qualcomm warned that a long-running spat with Nokia could escalate and lead to a legal action if the Finnish firm halted royalty payments.
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Cisco boosts IOS code with VoIP, security
December 5, 2006
As customary with Cisco IOS releases, the newest one has an extensive range of features tucked into the code, with enhancements that could help users bolster their VoIP and security implementations.
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Technology improving nontraditional learning
December 4, 2006
Harden and Scales have been instrumental in advancing distance learning delivery and communication with the next generation of emerging technology, dubbed H.323. "This uses Internet Protocol and incorporates vast improvements in software and hardware, better decoding and encoding capabilities, multi-signal transmission and high visual resolution," explains Harden.
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Motorola, Nokia Set Cell Phones Free
December 4, 2006
New "unlocked" mobile phones may make it easier to switch carriers, shaking up the $100 billion U.S. wireless industry.
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Microsoft and Swisscom to Offer Enhanced VoIP Services for SMBs in Switzerland
December 4, 2006
Microsoft and Swisscom announced they areworking together to deliver converged communications services to Swisscom's small and midsize businesses (SMBs). By deploying the Microsoft Solution for Enhanced VoIP Services, Swisscom will be able to offer its customers a range of communications that help integrate telephony services with the PC.
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FCC chairman moves to end AT&T-BellSouth impasse
December 2, 2006
U.S. Federal Communications Commission Chairman Kevin Martin has sought a ruling that could permit a recused commissioner to cast a tie-breaking vote allowing AT&T to acquire BellSouth.
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It's hard to cut cord, especially on office phone
December 2, 2006
They kept trying to explain how much money I could save by switching my phone service, and I kept hanging up. This standoff went on for months until a sales representative managed to blurt out the price before I hung up. It was so much lower than what I pay now...
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Ericsson to work with Intel on mobile broadband
December 1, 2006
Swedish telecommunications equipment maker Ericsson will work with computer chip giant Intel on applications for mobile computers that will increase their attractiveness in the market.
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FBI taps cell phone mic as eavesdropping tool
December 1, 2006
The FBI appears to have begun using a novel form of electronic surveillance in criminal investigations: remotely activating a mobile phone's microphone and using it to eavesdrop on nearby conversations.
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World's largest VoIP system inaugurated
December 1, 2006
Taipei City Government officially inaugurated its VoIP system for public use, which is claimed to be the largest of its kind ever installed by the public sector in the world.
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Watch Your Step With VoIP
December 1, 2006
VoIP can be a boon for reducing telecommunications costs and integrating voice services with data networks. But the technology can also be rife with missteps if not planned and implemented. Experts note some common mistakes, and more importantly, how to avoid them. — Experts? I'd better be quiet before I get into trouble, but let's just say that we know a little more than these so-called experts and we disagree with some of the statements.
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