Archive for May, 2010

FCC Gives the OK to Frontier’s $8 Billion Verizon Deal

Thursday, May 27th, 2010

The Federal Communications Commission has given its stamp of approval on a sale that tops $8 Billion. Verizon Communication Incorporated has sold off almost five million telephone lines to Frontier Communications Corporation. This sale spans mainly rural areas across 14 states.

This deal came with some speculation on how well Frontier could handle the financial strain of the landlines. Let’s face it; Frontier Communications is a much smaller company that Verizon Communication and dealing with five million landlines is a big deal.

Frontier Communications won this deal by promising a lot to its new rural customers. The biggest promise comes in the form of faster broadband access to more people in its service areas. Add to that the promise of fiber connectivity to libraries, hospitals, and other anchor institutions. These are some big promises by a little company.

Julius Genachowski, FCC chairman, went on to say “Today the Commission approves, subject to conditions to protect the public interest, a transaction with the promise of significantly improving broadband availability to millions of consumers—as well as small businesses and anchor institutions—in rural and small-town America.”

This deal did not come without a few upset people though. In April, communications workers in West Virginia protested this deal. They argued that similar deals with Verizon Communications in other locations led to workers losing jobs, inadequate service, and broadband promises that have yet to be fulfilled. Protestors topped off the protest cake by pointing out fears of Frontier Communications financial abilities to handle such a large service area.

While Frontier Communications is making big promises, only time will tell how well this deal works out for the company and the service area. The FCC has a goal of spreading the broadband wealth across the nation. Frontier Communications has promised to fulfill this wish. How they do it and how many people are left standing with jobs will be the true indicator of how successful this deal really was.

Phone = Key = The Future?

Thursday, May 27th, 2010

According to MobileCrunch, the large hotel chain Holiday Inn is running a trial in two of their main branches for using mobile smart phones in place of the more-common plastic magnetic key cards.

Though the article doesn’t go into how exactly the phone/key system would work, the user would presumably download a key app, then scan a personalized bar code matching that of their room’s sensor. The iPhone app Red Laser has been working on similar things for a while, so the technology at least exists.

The idea behind the innovation is to simplify the key card system, allowing guests to use the item they’re already carrying (smart phone), and not have to add another piece of plastic to their wallet. For hotels, though installing readers is likely costly, the payoff comes when they get to do away with non-reusable magnetic cards, and save time handing out and replacing the normal key cards.

Bryson Koehler, an executive at InterContinental Hotels group, told USA Today: “The holy grail item for us is to simplify the room-key hand-off moment at the hotel. We don’t need to burden people with additional items; it just clutters up their lives. The beauty of the smart phone is that they’ve already got it.”

Testing of the new system will run about 2 months, in the cities of Chicago and Houston, TX, USA. The keycard technology is said to be compatible with iPhones, BlackBerrys and Android phones.

We’re obviously unsure of how the trial will go. Or, for that matter, how cost effective it’ll prove to be for hotels. But eliminating more plastic, and empowering our smart phones to do even more (when they practically do everything already) is an exciting prospect.

We’ll be keeping an eye on this one!

Why (and how) to Use Web Call Accounting

Thursday, May 27th, 2010

Web call accounting can be a helpful, or indeed a needed element for many small or medium sized businesses. The Revolution Web Call Accounting solution, delivered by SE Telecom, is recognized as among the world leaders in call accounting software.

Businesses such as offices, hospitals, and universities — those that need to allocate telecommunications costs to certain individuals or departments — consider call accounting a virtual necessity in their day-to-day operations. Revolution Web Call Accounting gathers this crucial information automatically, making it easy to track, designate, and bill online.

Other businesses, such as traditional offices or service companies, do not bill their telecommunications by certain sub offices or departments. However, these businesses may benefit from web call accounting just the same, using it to gain a quick glimpse behind-the-scenes of their phone system(s), and easily monitoring telephone productivity for each line or employee.

The Revolution Web Call Accounting solution can can be accessed from a desktop computer, or from around anywhere around the globe through its web interface. Revolution Web Call Accounting can connect to virtually any telephone system, including those from Avaya & Nortel, and is designed to work in any country.

The Revolution Web Call Accounting solution comes included with numerous preset report settings, support for account and pin codes, contact database for identifying business and personal calls, client billing, and a built-in query builder.

If you’re considering investing in a web call accounting system, or are looking for a new, innovative way to improve the efficiency of your telecommunications investment, please contact SE Telecom today. We would be happy to discuss your options with you.

Top Secret Motorola Droid Shadow Found Doing Push-ups in a Gym

Wednesday, May 26th, 2010

Apple is not the only one having issues keeping their phone secret. Motorola has been in the spot light as well. The unreleased Motorola Droid Shadow got snapped up in a Verizon Corporate gym.

The Droid Shadow is the successor to the popular Motorola Droid. Apparently, it looks so much like the Droid the person who found it did not think twice about the find until they unlocked the phone to see who owned it. They were, you know… being a Good Samaritan by wanting to return it to the proper person.

Upon unlocking the phone, the finder stumbled on a text message. The text message read something along the lines of “Sup dude! You totally just found the super top secret phone.” OK, so that really was not the text message. There was a text message of some form that clued the finder on to his lucky find.

Like any good gadget geek, the finder did some looking around on the phone to snag all the specs they could. The rumored Motorola Droid Shadow will be sporting 16GB of internal storage. The phone will also have a Snapdragon processor or some sort. Best of all, the phone will come with an 8MP camera that can shoot 720p video. The screen will come in the 4.3-inch size variety, but the resolution of the screen is unknown.

This lucky phone find comes only a few days after another reported find. The “Getting Started” manual for the rumored Droid Shadow was also posted a few days ago on the HowardForums website. Now all someone needs to do is post a pack shot and these rumors can be put to rest.

The rumor mill continues with the release date as well. Motorola is supposedly dropping this phone on the public sometime in June or July of 2010. This would make sense as that is the rumored release date of the iPhone 4G. This release date is most likely no coincidence. Now the real question is: Why are all these testers of super secret phones just leaving their phones in the most obvious places?

Hong Kong Activists Push for an iPhone Boycott Hong Kong

Tuesday, May 25th, 2010

Hong Kong Activists Push for an iPhone Boycott Hong Kong labor activists plan to kick off a boycott of Apple’s newest iPhone. The iPhone 4G has already had a whirlwind of publicity due to testers leaving the phone in public places. The first find of one such phone led to a suicide as well.

This boycott is sure to cause Apple some much-unwanted PR issues. The boycott is coming fast on the heels of several suicides from Apple’s Southern China manufacturing plant. There have been ten suicides this year alone at the Foxconn plant in Shenzhen. The latest was a young 19 year old boy who fell to his death.

Protests have already begun outside of the Foxconn office in Hong Kong. On Tuesday, two-dozen protestors sat outside of the Foxconn office. The protestors are calling for better working conditions at the plant that manufactures the iPhone and many other technology items.

The suicides are drawing a lot of attention to the current working conditions at the Shenzhen plant. Activists are claiming that long hours, low pay, and high pressure are a daily norm for the plant. Terry Gou, founder of Foxconn, has denied these accusations by saying he is not running “blood and sweat factories.” The boycott of the iPhone 4G will kick off long before Apple releases the latest phone unto the public.

There are plans to take the boycott to other Apple technology manufacturers as well, such as United Win Technology. Apple has faced bad PR from Foxconn for the past few years. This year is particularly bad due to the high number of apparent suicides, which is hitting an average of two suicides a month now. Foxconn has planned to build tall fences at the Shenzhen dormitories to prevent further suicides.

Foxconn also intends to implement some counseling programs, which will include psychiatrists, counselors and monks. They’ll be implementing wellness programs too, such as one in which 2,000 singers, dancers and gym trainers will visit the two sprawling campuses in Shenzhen.

iPhone’s ‘It’ Factor Still Driving Sales On Friday

Sunday, May 23rd, 2010

iPhone’s ‘It’ Factor Still Driving Sales On Friday, The Globe and Mail ran a story about the iPhone’s cool factor. In essence, even though the technology in the iPhone is being outpaced by its competitors, it still remains the top choice among consumers due to an ‘it’ factor.

It’s been three years since Apple unveiled the first generation iPhone, a virtual eternity for new technology. Yet Apple is now selling more iPhones than ever. Why is this? What is it about the iPhone? Statistics and personal testimony indicate that it’s still a lot about status. Other phones can shoot high-definition video and have higher-resolution cameras.

The processor seems faster in new phones such as the Droid, and competitors are matching features that once set the iPhone apart, such as the slim shape and a huge store for apps and games. “This thing is not state of the art,” says ABI Research analyst Michael Morgan. But the fact that the iPhone doesn’t have the best technology doesn’t seem to bother most people. It’s more about the aura of coolness. “When you see people with them, I’m like, ‘Oh, OK, they get it,“’ says Jason Sfetko, a designer at Complex magazine in New York.

When he sees someone with a BlackBerry, “I might think, maybe they’re an accountant or something. They’re answering too many emails.” The iphone’s reach extends even to China, where Apple started selling iPhones in October. “I’m quite amazed about what the iPhone has achieved,” says Deng Jinchun, a manager at Jing Lang, a large iPhone retailer in China’s Hunan province. “Apple has been selling the same phone for about three years and the sales are still increasing.

I can’t imagine a Nokia phone or any other brand could achieve something similar.” Apple has sold more than 51 million iPhones since they hit the market in 2007, including 8.75 million in the most recent quarter. That was more than double the number it sold in the comparable quarter last year.

The surge has also helped Apple’s stock double over the past year, and investors are betting that the iPhone still has room to grow. Our Take Sometimes, as people who put themselves on the cutting edge of technology every day, we can get caught up in comparing processor speeds and video features, at the cost of plain old appeal.

The iPhone is a good reminder that at the end of the day, it’s often the “it” factor that determines sales, not just necessarily the spec sheet. This goes for iPhones, and it also goes for all phones (and phone systems).

A telecommunications strategy has no value on its own — it’s only valuable if it works for you and your business. Sometimes, that comes down simply to what you want to use… a factor that should never be overlooked.

SE Telecoms — The Benefits of 24/7 Service

Wednesday, May 19th, 2010

Most likely, your company works around the clock in this economy. Businesses with a national, or indeed, international focus, can’t afford to lose connectivity across time zones or through their “night.” We understand that your telecommunications system must serve you for more than just the traditional 9-5 workday.

To meet the continual needs of our customers, SE Telecoms is dedicated to providing 24/7 service. Whether you need to discuss new pieces of technology, a telecommunications problem you see within your organization, or you’re experiencing a technical snafu with our software, we’re here to help.

The reason we provide 24/7 service is simple: customer service is the most important aspect of our business, and we want to be there whenever and wherever you need us. We don’t technically have to provide 24/7 telecommunications service… but we wouldn’t have it any other way.

Benefits of 24/7 service

There are numerous benefits our customers receive as a result of our commitment to service:

• Quicker turnaround. If you want to upgrade your telecommunications systems, or solve a problem you’re experiencing with them, 24/7 service allows us to get to you quickly, and get you back and running.

• Peace of mind. No need to hold your breath after ‘business hours,’ or make a dash for the phones at 4:59. Go about your work, and contact us with any issues whenever they come up.

• No downtime. Whenever you have a problem, 24/7, we’re there to help resolve it. We’ll minimize or eliminate any downtime you may experience, and get you back on your feet without losing out on valuable business.

How to Contact Us

If you would like to contact SE Telecoms, any time of day or night, you can visit our Contact page. It has a complete listing of toll free phone numbers you can use to reach us, as well as a physical address and email address.