Long Term Evolution (LTE), is the latest standard in the mobile network technology, and the emergence of LTE stands out as the most significant development in communications today, says Gordon Eddy (News - Alert), director of product development, Empirix, Inc.
Eddy said that LTE networks bring the promise of increased capacity and speed to mobile applications which in turn enables enterprises to roll out a richer Unified Communications (News - Alert) implementation. Eddy added that Unified Communications will go mainstream in 2011 because it is an ideal means for enterprises to optimize business processes using communications.
Eddy recently spoke with TMCnet’s Rich Tehrani in an interview provided in full below.
Rich Tehrani: What is the most significant trend in communications today? Why?
Gordon Eddy: The emergence of LTE stands out as the most significant development. LTE networks bring the promise of increased capacity and speed to mobile applications which in turn enables enterprises to roll out a richer Unified Communications implementation. In addition, LTE results in an improved end-user experience and lower operating costs. However, there is a Catch-22: as LTE rolls out it will necessitate a reliance on new and hybrid access technologies, and operators will be challenged to gain visibility into their customers’ overall quality of experience.
RT: What is the one product or service the market is most in need of?
GE: Operators must have a unified view of real-time performance and interaction of multiple mobile technologies. Without this visibility into both the customer experience (the user plane) and data transmission (the control plane), performance issues at the device-level or from peak-period usage could go unchecked. These issues put operators at the risk of canceling out LTE’s promise of a richer experience.
RT: When will unified communications go mainstream?
GE: I believe we are already starting to see UC go mainstream because it is an ideal means for enterprises to optimize business processes using communications. We already have presence, voice, IM and video apps that work together, and there is a growing dependence on SIP for interoperability. Meanwhile, communication services are being integrated into workflow like never before.
RT: What are your thoughts on the viability of mobile video chat or conferencing?
GE: Mobile video chat and conferencing are absolutely viable. In practice, all it means is that there is an additional glut of mobile data on the network. For mobile video communication to go mainstream, however, there will need to be a renewed focus on monitoring and balancing heavy usage of the network, to manage the risk of degraded customer experience across the board.
GE: Android will continue to be a force because of developers’ and users’ general gravitation toward open-source technology. However, iOS4 will maintain its share of devotees by virtue of it being an Apple (News - Alert) product. Ultimately, I envision a two horse race between those two platforms.
RT: Some have suggested wireless networking will soon replace wired networks in the enterprise. Do you agree? Why or why not?
GE: Eventually, this may be the case. But not in the near term. Enterprises are still in the throes of migrating from PSTN to IP, and wireless adds an additional layer of complexity to this migration. We prefer to believe that enterprises will take things one step at a time in this regard.
RT: What impact has the growth of cloud-based services had on your business?
GE: The cloud has provided Empirix with a new platform for testing and monitoring the quality of voice networks. Essentially, we can offer a unified platform that is SIP-based and multimodal , and can easily span geographies to test any network, anywhere. With “Hammers in the cloud,” we can deliver seamless migration from a test environment to monitor environment and offer customers a new breed of elasticity and flexibility, for either large or small-enterprise environments around customized solutions. The cloud brings a more controlled cost structure and helps us deliver the best value in the market place.
RT: What is the most overhyped technology in your opinion?
GE: Candidly, I believe the tablet computer is vastly over-hyped. I just don’t see a sustainable movement away from laptop computers, and today’s smart phones are similar enough capability-wise, but come in a much smaller package. You cannot wear a tablet on your belt.
GE: Our session will explore strategies for VoIP-system testing and how enterprises and network operators can keep VoIP under their firm control. We will specifically deep dive into the benefits and challenges of SIP trunking environments as well as provide overall guidance on how best to maximize return-on-investment in SIP. We will discuss the current state of SIP trunk deployments, focusing on both the interoperability of components (IP-PBX, Session Border Controllers, etc.), and the quality of voice applications that utilize SIP trunking.
RT: What will attendees take away from your session?
GE: Attendees will walk away with an understanding for how to assure the quality of voice on an IP network, especially in the presence of other services and applications (i.e. data, video, fax, etc).
RT: Please make a bold technology prediction for 2011.
GE: 2011 will be the year when Unified Communication finally goes mainstream. By the end of the year, the majority of enterprises will have rolled out a UC implementation as a way to improve their business processes and their interaction with customers.
To find out more about Gordon Eddy and Empirix, visit the company at ITEXPO West 2010. To be held Oct. 4 to 6 in Los Angeles, ITEXPO is the world’s premier IP communications event. Gordon Eddy is speaking during "Is VoIP a Victim of its Own Success? Maintaining Quality in the Wake of VoIP Proliferation.” Don’t wait. Register now.