Category: VoIP

Everything is connected

Tough morning. Arrived at work this morning and the Internet connection was down. Seems like a firewall configuration change prevented outbound access to the Internet.

True, but when you announce it in that way the ramifications of that failure is not fully understood by everyone. Many ignored that message as they did not need Internet access just them. They went about doing their business.

However, like many organizations we have an internal Blackberry Enterprise Server connected to our Exchange system. So while email was working in-house, messages were not being delivered to the Blackberries.  This was not initially obvious and communicaitons did not go out alerting those users. The BES needs to connect to the RIM server prior to reaching the handheld devices and visa versa.

So now the problem, how do you let someone in the field know that they can’t send or receive messages on their Blackberry, when the tool used to let them know there is an outage (email) only works in-house to Outlook workstations?

I’ve thought that setting up a private Twitter account for out-of-band communications (SMS and the phone still worked). How about using a bulk text messaging service that can use a preset distribution list. Does anyone have any ideas.

SkypeOut Goes Free

Skype has just announced free calls to all landlines and mobile phones within the US and Canada. This is promotion goes until December 31, 2006.

One wonders how Skype, now part of eBay is going to make any money and how others will react to this news. You still need a PC or PDA with WiFi to access the network, but new devices such as Polycom’s Communicator and numerous USB handsets make things a whole lot easier. Add in Skype’s conferencing features, call forwarding, voice messaging, Skypecasts, and buddy lists and you have a whole lot of communications capabilities in one spot.

Now you just have to fight with your ISP to allow unfettered access to Skype. Reports are coming in from all over Canada and the USA that users are being restricted or totally locked out of Skype access. My message to the ISPs -> get over it.