VUC Goes LifeSize Feb 25th At 1PM EST

The VUC call featuring LifeSize, originally set for February 4th, has been rescheduled to February 25th at 1PM EST. That makes it part two of a VUC double-header that begins with Safi Systems at the usual time.

All of the details of the LifeSize call remain as originally laid out. Those who received the Logitech C910 HD webcams can use the LifeSize Desktop software to connect to the LifeSize Bridge.

The video bridge will also be live-streamed via a web feed using the LifeSize Video Center. The video bridge will be connect to the ZipDX bridge for those who participate in audio only.

LifeSize will also be offering another chance for those who received the webcams to test connectivity to their bridge before Friday’s call.

The LifeSize Desktop trial installation only runs for 30 days which is one of the reasons that we’ve decided upon the Feb 25th date. An email poll of those who received the webcams did not reveal anyone who expected to have a problem with the software reaching that 30 day limit as of Feb 25th.

However, not everyone responded to the email poll. If you find that you will not be able to use the LifeSize Desktop software on the 25th please contact me asap so that we can try to find a solution.

Oh, yes. Remember that LifeSize will be giving away a Logitech Harmony One programmable universal remote control to one lucky VUC attendee.

Randy’s Guest Post At HDVoice News

Randy Resnick (a.k.a. Zeeek, or more recently Dulo Par) the founder of the VoIP Users Conference, has a guest post over at HDVoice News called, “An “ear opener” to HD voice in conferencing.” Randy details the advantages of wideband voice for large public conference calls. He should know, having produced thousands of hours of podcast based upon such calls over the past few years.

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VUC Call April 3rd: Michael Robertson’s OpenSky

opensky_logoWhen I heard that Randulo had arranged to have Gizmo5‘s Michael Robertson as last weeks VUC guest I just knew that I had to find a way to free up an hour and be on that call. Were you there? If not you should listen to the podcast.

Rather than offer a bunch of commentary about bridging the SIP and Skype realms, which I will save for later, I’ll just say one thing for the moment. Paying $20/year for OpenSky seems to make more sense than paying for a membership in FWD, which I did last summer.

Wideband Telephony: Seeing What You Hear

As expected the VUC call on Nov 7 about wideband VoIP proved very interesting. It was well attended with a dozen participants on the ZipDX wideband bridge and another twenty on the Talkshoe narrowband conference bridge. Our guest, David Frankel of ZipDX, did a good job of introducing wideband telephony, it’s advantages and some of the issues surrounding its implementation.

We recorded the call in several places so that we have both wideband and narrowband recordings available for comparison after the fact. History has shown that many people download the conference recordings, even many months after the original conference date. It’s evidence of “the long tail” phenomenon that we hear about so often.

However, some people are very visual so I thought I’d bolster the archive recordings by doing some simple visual analysis of the spectral energy distribution in each type of call. Happily, Cool Edit Pro (now Adobe Audition) makes it really simple to generate both waveform and spectral views of an audio clip.

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Exceptional Customer Service: e4 Strategies

A few weeks ago I bought a couple of Polycom IP650 SIP phones from Michael White at E4 Strategies. This company was recommended by Karl Fife, a regular on the weekly Voip User Conference.

e4 had some IP650s listed as “open box” and offered at a discount so I ordered a pair. A day later Michael responded that in fact the open box units were sold out, but he’d honor the price for my small order. That’s great, I thought. And they were delivered quickly, too. All in all an excellent purchase experience.

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VOIP Uptake By Trixbox Users Rising

Kerry Garrison of Fonality appeared on The Voip Users Conference Friday December 21 to address the recent fervor over the matter of Trixbox implementing a script to automatically send system details back to Fonality. Kerry did a good job in front of a tough crowd. As a company they have admitted their error and appear to be redirecting themselves to a more appropriate approach. “Mea culpa’s” are hard, but they appear to be doing the right thing in this case. You can listen to the MP3 recording of the call to get the details.

Presuming that the opt-in version of the program is launched there is no doubt that the information that they could gather from their user base could be very interesting. They will be able to tell what sort of phones are being deployed, what version of each app is being used, what sort of connectivity is deployed, etc. Very interesting stuff.

In particular Kerry was able to say that in 2007 around 40% of their users are leveraging VOIP providers for core services. And further, this is double the uptake from the previous year. That is, people are using IP-based DIDs and termination services instead of, or addition to, traditional TDM (T-1, E-1) or analog lines (FXOs.) So it appears that confidence in VOIP service providers is increasing.

This certainly echos my own experience. I have not had a traditional land line in over two years. I’ve used a number of ITSPs, some good and some not-so-good. But I also find that they are steadily improving. To a degree this flies in the face of the spectacular and much publicized collapse of Sun Rocket earlier this year, as well as a number of others.

The past few months there’s been an increasing amount of FUD circulating about VOIP service providers. Vonage, Sun Rocket et al have impacted public perception of the space. This information reveals that there is good news as well, it’s just not as well known.