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mikebrown Posted:
there, Please
check out -

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Hard Wiring - Installation
Hardwiring in a Rental House
On Oct 24, 2017 at 22:29:48

mikebrown Posted:
Hello, I think
you should consult
it with the Expert
they can surely
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In The Forum:
Hard Wiring - Installation
Hardwiring in a Rental House
On Jun 24, 2017 at 09:15:34

Haniltery Posted:
For wipe call
history also some
of the offline, in
gengral , it
usually apply to

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How to Delete call history from online account?
On May 09, 2017 at 06:14:26

diana87 Posted:
You have to use
VPN service to
and get free
access while

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Recent calling problem from Egypt
On May 02, 2017 at 17:28:06

dconnor Posted:
What is the main
number on the
account? And
which one is the
virtual number?

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Vonage UK
How do you call 999
On Apr 27, 2017 at 18:52:02

Trafford Posted:
Seems like a
question. We
rely exclusively
on a Vonage system
for our

In The Forum:
Vonage UK
How do you call 999
On Apr 27, 2017 at 10:42:50

diazou Posted:
Hello, It's
compatible with
Android your phone
? Thanks!

In The Forum:
IP PBX for small business
On Mar 28, 2017 at 12:42:33

jeddaisg Posted:
Hi all We have
a Vonage VOIP
system for our
office. Lately,
our call quality

In The Forum:
Ethernet Cable; Wiring schematic? 568-B?
On Feb 23, 2017 at 18:33:52

beast321 Posted:
I don't know if
you heard, that
many more
Dreamcast games
are opened up

In The Forum:
Fax - Tivo - Alarms
Using phone as a dial up modem for Dreamcast Gaming
On Feb 16, 2017 at 03:16:51

Av8rix Posted:
Sorry to start a
new thread on an
old topic but when
I google “Vonage
MAC address

In The Forum:
New adapter and router -- MAC change
On Jan 11, 2017 at 01:07:21

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VoIP New Year Party Just Beginning?

Vonage In Print News

Voip New Year Party Just Beginning?

January 30, 2004

By Samphors Chhun and Charlotte Wolter

For a year that started with so little cheer on the financial front, 2003 certainly finished in a happy mood.

Not only did money start to flow into the industry once again, in the form of capital funding, but the pace of new service deployments and vendor sales picked up noticeably.

Then in the last few weeks of the year the industry exploded with announcements of major deployments of voice over IP by cable companies, ILECs and IXCs (interexchange carriers). Those announcements brought the promise that 2004 would see more sales and more revenue for many Voip vendors. From new services to acquisitions to new funding, the Voip industry was alive and still kicking.

"The industry turned the corner," says Laura Thompson, vice president of corporate marketing at Sylantro Systems Corp. in Campbell, Calif. "Major milestones were achieved with big players, such as SBC, announcing the availability of hosted Voip services." SBC will be using Cilantro's feature server and hosted communication application for its IP Centrex services, to be launched this year.

"VoIP has come back to life in a substantial way," says Jack Harrington, general partner at Advanced Technology Ventures, which gave $15 million to session border controller vendor Acme Packet. "It is starting to become a viable service."

Finishing with a Bang

Viable indeed. AT&T, British Telecom, SBC, Bell Canada, Comcast Communications Inc. and Time Warner Cable, to name a few, all announced that they were planning to, if not already in the process of, offering Voip services.

AT&T announced that it would offer a consumer voice-over-IP service in 2004, though it did not give many details.

Nevertheless, the announcement was viewed as significant. "AT&T is one of the largest phone companies providing this kind of technology to its customers," said Senior Associate Carl Stjernfeldt at Battery Ventures, "It gave credibility to VoIP." Battery Ventures, one of the leading venture capitals in the industry, has investments in Veraz Networks Inc., Cedar Point Communications Inc. and IP Unity.

Voice over IP "is placing pressure on traditional local exchange carriers, where the local carriers will have to enter the Voip business," says Harrington.

One ILEC giving in to that pressure was British Telecom, which offered a voice-over-IP service plainly aimed at the cable modem customers of its cable competitors. Whether that ploy works or not, it is the first time that BT has offered a classic broadband consumer Voip service, and there are indications the U.K. ILEC is gearing up for a broader offering.

"But what was more important was the cable operators' investment into VoIP," says Dave Welsh, a general partner at Partech Venture Capital. Cable operators have a large "pipe" going into the home, Welsh says, and voice over IP is one way to help fill up that pipe and bring in more revenue.

Brett Azuma, vice president of marketing, IP Unity, which received funding most recently from Siemens Venture Capital, ranked cable industry adoption of Voip as the "most important financial event" of 2003. "Everyone is asking about VoIP," he says, and it is finally perceived "as mainstream technology." "There is a lot of action in the United States right now," says to Jim Hourihan, vice president of marketing and product management, Acme Packet.

With pressure on the RBOCs from cable, interexchange carriers and Voip upstarts, each will be striving to offer "high-quality real-time services," he says, that will grab consumers and business alike.

More Funding

Also giving credibility to the industry's recovery was the burst of new funding announcements in the last few months of 2003. Venture capital firms found the industry stable enough to invest more than $42.7 million in the last four months of 2003.

A case in point is Partech Venture Capital. Of the $75 million total it invested in startups last year, about 20 percent went into Voip companies. "There was a lot of money put into different companies," says Welsh. "I think that trend will continue, if not grow."

Stjernfeldt of Battery Ventures credited the increased funding to the fact that 2003 was the first year that people who are not in the industry "understood what Voip can do for them." He went on to say that it is hard for many to understand why Voip is good as well as cheap. Nevertheless, overall, "It was a very good year," he says.

Sylantro received funding in November from Argo Global Capital, which invested $4.5 million, increasing the total amount of financing the company has received to $92 million. According to Sylantro, the company has doubled its revenue in 2003, though, because Sylantro is a private company, those figures can not be confirmed.

Vonage garnered one of the biggest single funding prizes, taking in more than $35 million. The infusion of money wasn't important just for Vonage, in Stjernfeldt's opinion. "Vonage getting funded was a big thing, because they are a high-profile company," he says.

And Net2Phone went to the ultimate funding source, public markets, raking in $61 million from its initial public offering in November.

The additional funding enabled companies to invest more money in sales staff, particularly in international markets, and in marketing efforts, and to beef up their customer support infrastructures.

For example, session border controller vendor Acme Packet received $15 million in funding in September. The funding will be used to add staff in the company's field operations and technical support, according Hourihan.


Another flag indicating that 2003 was a better year was the number of acquisitions in the industry. Companies were prosperous enough to buy out other firms, rather than just trying to stay afloat, as most were doing just a year earlier.

One major acquisition in 2003 was Level 3 Communications Inc.'s purchase of Telverse, signaling that Level 3 intended to become a major player in wholesale IP Centrex on a national scale. "We do believe that Telverse will be an interesting addition to our ability to do what we hope to do, and that is serve the cable market," said Jim Crowe, CEO, Level 3, at a conference call in November. It is interesting that Level 3's first announced major customer, however, turned out to be an ILEC, SBC to be precise.
Earlier in the year, Level 3 had also acquired Genuity Inc., a provider of IP voice transit and termination services that filed bankruptcy in 2002. Level 3 paid up to $242 million in cash and assumed a significant portion of Genuity's existing long-term operating agreements, which include customers, such as Verizon Communications Inc. and America Online Inc.

In November, Polycom Inc. purchased Voyant Technologies Inc. for $110.7 million in cash consideration, or about $95.7 million net at the time of closing. Voyant expands Polycom's product line to include products for service providers, rather than the enterprise customers that have been the company's focus.

Also in November, dynamicsoft Inc. purchased Teltier. The acquisition positions dynamicsoft to work with mobile providers as they transition from 2G to 3G networks. It also may enable dynamicsoft to recognize more revenues in the short term, as Teltier brings with it relationships with large mobile voice providers and with voice messaging firms serving the mobile industry.

Smaller acquisitions include TelcoBlue's purchase of the Singapore Call Center from Intercontinental Communications and IP Voice's purchase of Infotel of Singapore. These acquisitions by smaller international Voip companies were evidence of, not only the improving financial health of the industry overall, but also its growth in Asia.

Challenges Ahead

While the industry basks in the glow of its first taste of success in a couple of years, there is still awareness of the challenges for the future.

One often heard was the issue of how smaller Voip companies can participate in a global marketplace. "The challenge is covering the worldwide opportunities in front of us. We are a 55-person company, but we deal with the largest service providers on the planet," says Hourihan. "We leverage partners. In Japan we are using a distributor and system integrators.

We are also partnering with some of the largest equipment ventures, such as Sonus Networks." The challenge is similar for media server vendor Convedia, another smaller firm selling a product that has a wide range of applications.

"We make extensive use of channels and will continue to do so," says Grant Henderson, cofounder and executive vice president, marketing and strategy, Convedia, talking about the company's plans for 2004.

Azuma says IP Unity has had significant trials with companies, small and large, but it can still be a challenge to turn trials into revenue. "It's tough to make money when people are adopting something new," Azuma says. "We want to make the money in 2004 on the investments we've made in 2003."

Despite these challenges, says Hourihan, "(2003 was) absolutely wonderful for us."

Looking on the Bright Side

Hourihan isn't the only one smiling. After the industry broke its drought in 2003, in 2004 it might actually bear fruit. Harrington predicts voice over IP "will continue to be a great service for consumers and will grow in 2004."
And Welsh sees "in 2004 the industry will continue to bloom, and, I think, in 2005, you'll see a boom."

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