Thursday, November 20, 2014

Special Interests and the FCC

This is a snapshot of just one day at the FCC and just one docket - Open Internet.

  • FCC Seeks Fiber Deployment Information from AT&T
  • Cox Discusses AT&T and DirecTV Merger, Open Internet
  • NCTA, ITTA, USTelecom, et al. Discuss Proposals for Open Internet Regulation
  • NCTA, et al. Discuss Open Internet Issues
  • CCA Asks FCC to Provide Flexibility to Wireless Carriers
  • Open Technology Institute Discusses Study on Wireless Broadband Providers
  • CTIA, et al. Discuss Mobile Broadband Issues
  • Rural Wireless Association Discusses Open Internet Issues 
  • U.S. Cellular Discusses Open Internet Issues  
  • T-Mobile Discusses Data Roaming, Open Internet Issues 
  • WISPA Asks FCC to Consider Interests of Small Providers  
  • GSMA Expresses Concern With Title II Classification of Broadband Services

That is a lot of groups and companies weighing in on how they will be affected by Open Internet. From the looks of it over the past week, cellular companies are experiencing a sphincter tightening over Open Internet rules being applied to them too.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Culture and Other Tidbits

This twitter transcript about building and spreading culture was curated from a chat session. Some good points, but as always with a twitter transcript it is a little disjointed.

A bad example of culture might be Uber right now. Seth Godin has a short take on storms that brew. "Action or inaction are both forms of leadership and standard setting." Employees see all the actions you do take - and all the ones you do not take. Both.

17 Gapingvoid Cartoons That Will Change Your Business

Interesting panel at Broadsoft Connections about how SP’s around the world are selling UC.

Goal Setting & Sales Planning for 2015 webinar is on Dec. 10. Register here.

Good article about science fiction and predictions: here.

Good read from Seth about Apple as a luxury brand. Luxury, Tribes, Placebo effect, Brand, Function – all reasons people buy from you.

Patagonia is still a luxury tools company. The coats they sell cost more, but some professionals choose them regardless of brand, because in addition to tribal affiliation and the placebo that comes from buying a luxury good, they're still extraordinarily functional.

And Advice from a shark: @ CP.

Some VoIP Stats

Some stats on VoIP from ANPI.

By the end of 2015, “60% of all North American enterprises will move at least 30% of their voice communication to the cloud” — Gartner.

The IP Voice services market is currently growing at a 28.8% compound annual growth rate — Gartner

The current communications market for businesses with less than 100 lines is $15 BILLION

$377 BILLION will be spent on VoIP, Unified Communications, and other hosted services over the next 5 years.

$30 Billion US Telecommunications Private Line Services Market Starts To Decline, says Insight Research Corp.

Some numbers on Comcast Business and quarterly revenue numbers here.


Global UCaaS Market Revenue Is Expected To Grow To $75.81 Billion In 2020: New Report By Grand View Research [Or some big number that no one will hold us to.] "On premise unified communication accounted for over 60% of the market in 2013.

Global (UC) Unified Communication Market 2015-2019 report says one of the key trends in this industry is the increasing adoption of hosted UC. Mobility helps enterprises establish connections with businesses, workplace, and customers without time and location constraints. Analysts forecast the Global Unified Communication (UC) market to grow at a CAGR of 14.08% over the period 2014-2019.

New Wainhouse Research Study Forecasts Unified Communications as a Service (UCaaS) Market to Grow to $5.3B by 2018. In fact, the worldwide UCaaS market is forecast to be approximately $5.3B by 2018 with a 5-year compound annual growth rate of 24%, with considerable growth coming from the mid-to-large enterprise segment." [source]

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Where Are the Opportunities Now?

I am sitting on Edgewater Networks webinar. Security is the top opportunity out there for service providers.

Video conferencing and video calls is what many vendors wish was on the horizon. I think it is further down the runway, except for telemedicine, where it is huge. the nice thing about video: there's some hardware, install, MRC and bigger bandwidth pipe.

Under security, mobile sits right in that puddle. Besides BYOD (bring your own device) problems, there are also mobile device management (MDM) issues for even the company owned devices (phones, tablets). It is predicted to be a big market.

Managed WLAN or wi-fi is on the E-Rate radar. It is also on the radar of municipalities for parks; mall owners; and business owners to segment visitor traffic from employee traffic (think lobbies, meeting rooms). ADTRAN and Cisco are big in the Managed Wi-Fi game with an as-a-service, but Brocade just partnered with Aruba to get in the game too. (See here).

There are some changes in E-Rate, so check those out. This NoJitter article explains the possible opportunities now in E-Rate.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

The FCC Daily Headaches

I get NECA's daily email about what is happening at the FCC. What a headache. So much activity. Look:

Under Open Internet:

  • Paid Prioritization 
  • Net Neutrality 
  • Title II Classification for Wireless Broadband Services
With complaints ranging from:

  • ATT Supports Using Section 706 to Prohibit Paid Prioritization
  • Google Supports Rules Encouraging Investment in Abundant Bandwidth
  • Free Press Opposes Open Internet Hybrid Approach, Edge Facing Proposals
  • Sen. Cruz calls Net Neutrality the Obamacare of the Internet
  • Akamai Technologies Supports Section 706 for Broadband
  • 5% of rural America cannot get wired broadband.
  • If only we had more competition for broadband... The Future was stolen.

Other Topics under Consideration:

  • Rural Call Completion Reporting Rules (and Problems)
  • TDM-to-IP Transition
  • USF/ICC Transformation Order
  • IP Inter-connection Rules
  • VoIP Symmetry Rule
  • ATT Argues CLECs, VoIP Partners Do Not Provide Local Switching
  • CAF Phase II Cost Model
  • ECT/Lifeline Program
  • Urban Rate Floor [comments]
  • Muni Broadband Networks
  • LNP Administrator Transition

Not to mention the usual E-911, public safety, consumer protection and competition goals of the FCC.

And now "The Federal Communications Commission took its first step into the field of data security regulation on October 24 when it hit two telecommunications companies with a $10 million fine for allegedly failing to adequately safeguard customers' sensitive information." [source]

The open topics are ways that the FCC can make itself relevant again. This past week it floated 3 more ideas around. David Byrd at ANPI summarized them:

“Earlier this week, I circulated a proposal to update the Commission’s rules to give video providers who operate over the Internet — or any other method of transmission — the same access to programming that cable and satellite operators have. This change should ultimately give consumers more options to buy the programming they want.

“Those same principles apply in the context of an item I circulated last week on an issue commonly referred to as ‘VoIP symmetry.’ The notion is simple — interconnected VoIP is functionally equivalent to traditional voice service, and the Commission’s rules that govern the way communications companies pay each other to complete voice calls must reflect that. Technology-neutral rules are best.

“Technology transitions will be speeded by technology-neutral rules that promote, preserve and protect the enduring values that consumers have rightly come to expect. Chief among them is the ability to reach emergency responders, and the ability to choose products and services in a competitive market. Technology must improve; these values must be protected.”

The E-Rate program is also under review and being re-vamped for 2015.

The USF Rural Healthcare program is also under review. This program provides up to 65% of the costs of network. We will see where they go with that.

Monday, November 10, 2014

Hosted PBX: Do You?

Crazy morning thought about hosted PBX:

Let your competition buy another phone system. Our business communications system will blow that away.
It doesn't just allow you to communicate with your customers; it allows your employees to collaborate.
It will change the way you do business. (Do you want to change the way you do business?)

While that may make good ad copy, it would make for a good sales pitch from a confident sales professional who could then have a great conversation about the business and how it communicates now.

This is old copy of an add from ININ (Interactive Intelligence).

Execution is All

In an article today from VC Fred Wilson:

"Capital is not normally a recipe for success vs competition. Product execution, network effects, go to market strategies, and a few other things are what allows companies to win the market. Access to capital and raising a boatload of it is rarely the thing that wins the market."

I gave a talk recently where I said that Ideas were worthless. Ideas are free and a dime a dozen. Execution is where it is at. Without execution, an idea is just a dream.

My projects are usually about execution or improving execution.

[This Saturday, 11/14/14, I will be mentoring at Startup Weekend Tampa Bay mainly on execution and go-to-market.]

Friday, October 31, 2014

TWC Surprises With a Phone App

Since TWC is about to be bought and broken up, I didn't think they would roll out any new products. And since TWC is one of the few MSO's without a Broadsoft, I didn't even think an app was possible. But TWC launched a phone and tablet app for its home landline users call Phone 2 Go. The analyst at Telecompetitor thinks that people will dump their voice plans on their cellphone.

Copper Retirement a Big Topic at FCC for CLECs

IP Transition was the subject of 2 big meetings at the FCC.

XO "met with Wireline Competition Bureau staff on October 9, 2014, to suggest it would serve the public interest to maximize use of existing copper infrastructure in the transition to fiber." Any EoC carriers are going to be worried about how the ILECs handle copper retirement going forward. XO "also expressed support for Windstream’s proposal regarding continued access to DSn unbundled network elements regardless of the underlying technology and to access equivalent services where DSn special access services are discontinued."

"Windstream met with Chairman Wheeler’s Legal Advisor and General Counsel staff on October 22, 2014, to reiterate its view that discontinuation of TDM services and retirement of copper facilities does not warrant elimination of FCC oversight of competitive issues in the telecommunications industry. It urged the Commission to remind ILECs that they cannot relieve themselves of their obligation to provide DS1 and DS3 unbundled network element loops simply by transitioning to an all-IP network or retiring copper plant." [NECA]

Something to watch.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

G.Fast is Really Fast

From DSL Prime: will be at the Broadband World Forum in Amsterdam next week. Telekom Austria turned on a customer using Alcatel and Sckipio gear. Broadcom also has something. Europe has already committed to 40M lines of upgraded DSL. The growth is so strong Dell’oro says DSL chip sales went up last quarter. Take a look at the new site, 300-700 megabit!

First line: 536 Megabits down - 536 Mbps and upload 116 Mbps.

Telekom Austria has linked up a company offering working and event space via It's only "A customer" but a powerful symbol. the first actual customer connected. TA doesn't expect volume deployments until 2016, however. They see as an alternative to fiber for 400,000 apartments in Vienna alone. Many are older buildings where people are resistant to drilling for fiber. The French report a similar resistance to drilling. Gear is from Alcatel and Sckipio. more

More: Golden Opportunity For Copper-Based Broadband? Emerging DSL Technology Targets Aggregate 1-Gig Speeds