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Vonage VoIP Forum Digest - June 9, 2005


Vonage VoIP Forum Digest

June 9, 2005

By Daniel Connor

Welcome to today's edition of the Vonage Voip Forum Digest.

Today, we'll tell you about why key Vonage execs view the Federal Communications Commission's looming Voip E911 ruling as impossible to meet by September 19, and also look at a new study that will compare Vonage call quality to some of its rivals. We'll also look at a couple of interesting Vonage Forum threads that try to help a member who is having difficulty getting TiVo to work with his Vonage setup, and another thread that quite literally, wonders if Vonage's new ad campaign is rocket science.

In The Headlines

Citron On E911 120-Day Compliance: Ain't Gonna Happen

Vonage CEO Jeffrey Citron said yesterday that in his view, the "hundreds and hundreds" of logistical issues involved in universal deployment of FCC-mandated E911 access by Vonage and other service providers will keep such access from being deployed within the 120-day deadline given by the FCC on May 19.

Citron said that a key issue is what to do with rural subscribers. While these might be subscribers on the fringes of metro areas, they may still live in areas that are hard to get to and expensive to equip. "If you have one rural customer in one market, what do you do," Citron asked. "And there is no guidance inside the order to figure that out."

The Vonage chief added that because Vonage and other Voip providers want to avoid a rural-urban access divide, additional discussions with the FCC are in order.

Citron cited historical precedent as another indication that universal E911 over Voip won't happen by September 19. He noted that only 40 percent of cell lines and 93 percent of households have E911 access, and that number has only been reached after decades of infrastructure building. "So we are trying to resolve (E911 VoIP) in 120 days, and that is a real challenge," he said.

Related Forum Discussion

And Jon Cummings Agrees

It's around 600 air miles from the site of the SUPERCOMM trade show Chicago, where Vonage CEO Jeffrey Citron outlined the challenges of E911 VoIP, to Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C. Yet by the comments of Vonage vice-president of 911 Services Jon Cummings, you would think he and his boss were in the same room.

Well, they weren't in the same room, but they sure were on the same page.

Speaking at a Capitol Hill Forum on VoIP, Cummings outlined Vonage's key challenge in E911 access in terms of the physical plant work that must be done- and quick. He said that physical installation of wires that will connect Vonage customers to more than 6,000 Public Safety Answering Points (PSAPs) must be performed quickly. These PSAPs are the junctures where emergency responders take calls. These calls must be linked to the special routers that incumbent local exchange carriers (such as Verizon, SBC, BellSouth, and Qwest) use to pass on cell calls to PSAPs.

What's more, Cummings added, companies such as Vonage will also have to make this handoff work in rural areas covered by smaller carriers. In many cases, this will mean establishing new relationships with small, family run companies that Vonage has never worked with or even spoken to before.

Study On Vonage Call Quality Announced

Keynote Systems, which measures Internet connection performance, says it will launch a benchmark study that will compare Vonage, five competitors, and existing land line phone companies on several criteria.

The study will be performed in New York and San Francisco. Criteria will include outage minutes, dropped calls, audio delay (latency) and listening quality and geographical uniformity.

Vonage calls will be compared with rival Voip offerings from AT&T CallVantage, Packet 8, Primus Lingo, Skype and Verizon. No study performance or results release dates are available yet.

On The Vonage Voip Forum

In a new thread entitled WRT54G and TiVo Failed Negotiation Problem, Forum member Kent Langley posts that after he installed the Linksys WRTP54G router that came with his Vonage service, his TiVo service failed to connect. As TiVo subscribers know, TiVo updates listings by generating a daily phone call to the TiVo database where program listings for the local cable system the customer stipulates are maintained. No call, no updates. No updates, no information for TiVo to work with. Several members proposed workarounds that while less than ideal, are supposed to work. We'll wait on Kent to try these, and then, hopefully, to post how he did.

Back on May 25, I kicked off a thread that I called Vonage TV Commercial-Rocket. In the post, I included a short video of an exploding "rocket" that appears in a new Vonage ad. Several Forum members have responded in recent days with some colorful comments about the rocket's authenticity. The consensus so far: when it comes to this ad, at least - it ain't rocket science.

That's what's hot about Vonage today. Check with us tomorrow for the next edition of the Vonage Voip Forum Digest!!




 
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