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Andy Abramson
Interests: travel, wine, friends, blues, tech, music-jazz, dining, rock.
Recent Activity
There's a new 25% tariff on products coming to the USA from Europe. Let's call it the Trump Tax. For importers of European wine they will have to now pay more for each bottle they import, and of course those costs will be passed onto the distributors, retailers and ultimately the consumer. For European winemakers, wines already sold to importers will either sit in European warehouses as the importers await the end of the Trump Tax, or those bottles will be more expensive on the shelves of merchants in the USA. For restaurants who mark up wine they buy 3-4... Continue reading
Posted 6 days ago at WINESCENE
Let's face it. If you're an executive at a telco and you get the opportunity to rub shoulders with the Hollywood elite, your wife and kids will love you. I mean, come on. Backstage passes to concerts. (CHECK). VVIP treatment at theme parks (CHECK). The ability for your wife to tell her friends how she met Lady Gaga (CHECK). Oh and don't forget things like private dinners in the executive dining room where a famous actor and producer pitch their latest idea for your entertainment division to fund. (CHECK) Back in the day when John Malone sold TCI Cable, notably... Continue reading
Posted Sep 16, 2019 at VoIPWatch
ArsTechnica's Jon Brodkin has a well penned recap on what attorney generals in all 50 U.S.A. states are doing about Robocalling. Honestly, not much. In so many words, the AG's (i.e. not OGs) are basically giving the major carriers in the USA the ability to say "it's the other guys problem" and putting the blame on the "upstream provider." In other words, where the call originates, not where it terminates. This puts more pressure on those UCaaS and VoIP providers not mentioned in the story to take more action than the guys with the deepest pockets and most subscribers. This... Continue reading
Posted Aug 25, 2019 at VoIPWatch
It looks like 8x8 is conceding in it's efforts to use agents to capture the small business/SOHO market that it hasn't been working so they've taken up the mantra "if we can't beat them, join them." They've become a member of what I like to refer to as "the chase to the bottom" crowd with their latest "new" offer, 8x8 Express. Granted, 8x8 is well positioned and can serve up what can be seen as a "disruptive pricing" offer with the low price and large feature set. And they can do this very effiiciently, because smartly, founder and now board... Continue reading
Posted Jul 24, 2019 at VoIPWatch
Often we find that much of the content online is written in an "inside baseball" style. That's where the lingo and the phrases that make up a story are often written the same witty way that Hollywood writers weave in jibs, jabs, innuendo and more. I know, as I'm often guilty of working in a double entendre from time to time. That's why today's post from my pal Tsahi about ZOOM and their gaff about vulnerability was so refreshing. Tsahi wrote it so just about anyone could understand what ZOOM did wrong and right. For starters, it's a great primer... Continue reading
Posted Jul 15, 2019 at VoIPWatch
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I'm a video communications user from as far back as CU-SEEME. I remember the early days of SightSpeed, which Comunicano worked closely with along the way, all the way up to their exit to Logitech. We also worked intimately with Skype's video team who had me test their then in beta video function that I remember testing, helping them realize that depending on the compression algorithm just how much bandwidth and what type of processor was needed back when we handled marketing for the Skype Store. I even went out and bought a super fast Samsung laptop that I gave... Continue reading
Posted Jul 9, 2019 at VoIPWatch
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It looks like when it comes to cloud based collaboration ZOOM is pushing Cisco's WebEx and the Broadsoft off to a supporting, more legacy customer oriented role at Verzion and taking its seat at the table. It's also a big win for all OTT players when last week Verizon announced their choice of Zoom as a new collaboration partner, just rival AT&T has. It's important to note that Zoom grew out of unhappy WebEx founders and team members who felt Cisco wasn't letting them innovate, so with the announcement they have in some ways detthroned their former master. For years... Continue reading
Posted Jul 1, 2019 at VoIPWatch
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I'm excited to announce that I'll be speaking, moderating a panel discussion and convening at the upcoming APIdays - Amsterdam conference which is all about "The Rise of Contextual Communications" on June 18th and 19th at the Hotel Arena. My talk, which is about "The State of CPaaS" is a logical extension to the January Comunicano/TMCnet IT Expo survey from earlier this year where CPaaS, WebRTC and Call Centers all led the results of the survey. Beyond the 10 AM talk, I'll then lead a panel discussion that continues the "State of" discussion with represenatives from TeleSign (BICS), Nexmo (Vonage)... Continue reading
Posted Jun 5, 2019 at VoIPWatch
Growing up in the Philadelphia Flyers organization, around the age of 18 I read Ayn Rand's "The Fountainhead" as I learned that Ed Snider, someone I admire to this day as a business visionary, was a follower of her Onjectivist writings. A few years later, on a train based trip across Europe I read cover to cover, "Atlas Shrugged." A few years before his passing, Snider and Philadelphia Eagles owner Jeff Laurie, who is also a motion picture producer, bankrolled the trilogy of "Atlas Shugged" with help from David E. Kelley, of Picket Fences and L.A. Law fame who served... Continue reading
Posted Jun 5, 2019 at VoIPWatch
Many will have forgotten the Fire Phone from Amazon. A total blunder. A miss. Or maybe not. Amazon does one thing better than any company. It learns from its mistakes and come back to fight another day. That's why I've been enjoying the back and forth discussions in the media and on twitter about Amazon buying boost. To me it's a logical move as it gives Amazon more than a BOOST. It gives them spectrum. It connects to their edge. It brings their services to wireless in many more ways and most of all it would connect their growing fleet... Continue reading
Posted Jun 3, 2019 at VoIPWatch
Tsahi has a nice post about video beyond the conference call today in his Blog Geek Me blog. Years back with SightSpeed we had this short video messaging concept VLIP that then CEO Peter Csathy had been pushing. It was way too early but it many ways it was a precursor to the services Tsahi is listing, DUBB and LOOM. Somethings are just too early for prime time. To me, video messages are great, but there's another more immediate opportunity, which is the voice message. For example, it's so early, my hair isn't combed yet, I haven't shave and already... Continue reading
Posted Jun 3, 2019 at VoIPWatch
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Last year, client SignalWire, the company that is changing the CPaaS game, and which grew out of the telecom stack of all stacks, FreeSWITCH, launched LAML, the acronym for Legacy Antiquated Markup Language, which takes developers' API code built on Twilio and converts it to be SignalWire ready. The message was simple. "COPY PASTE SAVE" and stop overpaying for API based CPaaS and other telecom services. Seems their approach was right, as it looks like another player in the CPaaS world has come to the same conclusion. Bandwidth is making a major push to go after Twilio's customer base too.... Continue reading
Posted Jun 3, 2019 at VoIPWatch
As a winelover, and as winemaker Doug Margerum once quipped, the "ultimate wine insider," when I was writing a wine column in San Diego, I think the online world for wine discovery and sales has helped boost more wine brands than it has been given credit for. Back in the early part of the decade my agency helped launch Vivino and to this day I remain a fan as it has set out to be the ultimate wine discovery app. But I see the writing on the wall, or I should say, Map. With Google adding photo sharing of menu... Continue reading
Posted May 31, 2019 at VoIPWatch
We often talk about UCaaS, CPaaS and CCaaS. What we really have is something originally pioneered by Dean Elwood and Voxygen years back called Voice as a Service. or VaaS. It was all about cloud service based voice communication but through all the various versions of BLANK as a Service the voice communications world has never really been seen as part of the digital transformation universe. This is slowly starting to change, but for years the Voice side of most businesses have been kept separate from the data network side. But as more cloud native companies come on line and... Continue reading
Posted May 17, 2019 at VoIPWatch
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It's never too early to talk about a fun and forward looking event, the IIT Real Time Communications Conference is slated again for Chicago on October 14, 15 and 16. The call for speakers is happening now, and tickets are available to early registrants. Even beter, as a reader of VoIPWatch an early bird offer from IIT includes a discount when you use the code COMDISC. Will we see you there? Continue reading
Posted May 7, 2019 at VoIPWatch
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It's never too early to talk about a fun and forward looking event, the IIT Real Time Communications Conference slated again for Chicago on October 14, 15 and 16. The call for speakers is happening now, and tickets are available to early registrants. Even beter, as a reader of VoIPWatch an early bird offer from IIT includes a discount when you use the code COMDISC. Will we see you there? Continue reading
Posted May 7, 2019 at VoIPWatch
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Amazon Delivery with 72% of the country covered may end up being be their biggest business of them all, but delivery is the trojan horse. By starting to gain access to homes, cars or garages, Amazon has also taken the second step to being the access controls and security company for your home and small office. If I was ADT or Brinks I'd be thinking sale and soon. And if I was the cable company that was thinking about the smart home security market, I'd rethink my strategy about Amazon again. It not just the eyeballs Amazon owns and is... Continue reading
Posted May 6, 2019 at VoIPWatch
You have to know Perpignan to understand why it was the right place for INDIGENES. The city is the gateway between Catalogne in Spain and France (Catalogne Sud and Nord as they say) and Occitania which combines the top of the Roussillion and bottom of Languedoc area producers. If France had a San Francisco it's Perpignan in many ways. Hip. Chill. Cool. It's got a thriving restaurant and wine bar scene, and is like SF, a stones throw from wine regions north, south and west. You can't go east as the sea is there. That's part of the reason why... Continue reading
Posted Apr 29, 2019 at WINESCENE
Robocalls are in the news. But when I think about my daily communications habits I'm not getting any. Sure my regular dial up and mobile phone numbers rings throughout the day with calls from toll-free and from numbers that look like they're from a neighbor, when they're nothing but spam like calls. But since the bulk of my communications these days is with colleagues, peers and friends, my calling is one of two ways. Via an OTT service like WhatsApp, Telegram, Messenger, Signal or Skype. A scheduled conference call on UberConference or Zoom or a call via Dialpad. In almost... Continue reading
Posted Apr 26, 2019 at VoIPWatch
Many will have likely forgotten that AT&T acquired TCI for $48 billion dollars, the John Malone started cable MSO, back in 1998. They also acquired Media One a few years later for $44 billion. That was back in the day when cable was more of a patchwork quilt of service providers and Comcast was just starting to move towards world domination of the home entertainment world. The AT&T team that bought TCI was smitten with the opportunity. The acquisition turned out to be a disaster for the telco as TCI was more of a back office operation with their cable... Continue reading
Posted Apr 26, 2019 at VoIPWatch
There are two churning issues at the Federal Trade Comission and FCC levels that are rapidly converging. One is the dreaded, time sucking, annoying, fraud leaning, robocall issue and the second is Facebook and privacy. Both are a result of technology. And both will be solved by technology and government. In the case of Robocalling the telecom industry is moving fast and furiously to make it look like they are doing something to stop robocalling with efforts like STIR/SHAKEN, and apps that track numbers using crowdsource technology to identify and simply not let calls get to the customer. They are... Continue reading
Posted Apr 25, 2019 at VoIPWatch
I love the fact that I can make calls without using my mobile phone's number. Today I had a conference call, so I used UberConference over LTE. Next up was a call to a client, so still on LTE I used Dialpad and called him, and then for an hour or so had a crystal clear connection as I drove down the highway. Next up was a series of calls to colleagues and friends who are best reached on WhatsApp. Just like the experince with UberConference and Dialpad, the call quality was fanastic. The only call that had some quality... Continue reading
Posted Apr 21, 2019 at VoIPWatch
I've been following Disney's pursuit of their own streaming service and the process they've undertaken to get there. For starters they signaled their intention and then acquired the infrastructure of MLB's streaming group. That was a key and very schrewed move, as the MLB infrasructure was already supporting other companies, like WWE, and was a proven, battle tested and state of the art network. It also brought with it relationships and talent that understood how to stream and scale. Next they signaled again, telling the market that properties of theirs in the Marvel family would be coming to Disney+. This... Continue reading
Posted Apr 11, 2019 at VoIPWatch
Pal and former client, Dave Gilbert, who led Simple Signal to their successful exit to Vonage is back in Telecom with his recent investment and new found role with BuyerMedia. The telecom world needs more media outlets, especially ones that are focused on the end user or buyer. Too much of what's left is mostly "announcement" journalism. Hopefully the new Buyer leadership stays true to their name and writes for and from the buyers' perspective vs. rehashing bland news releases, recycled b.s., and where much of the information is taken at face value. Continue reading
Posted Apr 10, 2019 at VoIPWatch