TMCnet Network Packer Broker Week in Review

The network packet broker space is growing at a rapid speed. This is due to multiple factors including the fact that this robust offering can not only bring an unparalleled level of visibility into every action taking place on a network but can also power aggregation, replication and regeneration.

This week in the space, Riverbed (News - Alert) Technology revealed a strategic alliance with Amazon Web Services (News - Alert) (AWS) that would enable the company to enhance cloud performance and data protection that could in turn be delivered to enterprise customers.

The company’s (WAN) optimization solution will be seamlessly integrated with the subscription pricing model of AWS, enabling companies to easily leverage Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2) and Amazon Virtual Private Cloud (VPC) platforms.

"The Riverbed performance solutions are addressing enterprise customer needs as they embark on public cloud deployments in Amazon EC2 and S3. Our solutions enable enterprises that have deployed applications in the public cloud to provide a consistent user experience and increase the recoverability of their data, while reducing costs of IT infrastructure," said Venugopal Pai, vice president of Global Alliances and Business Development.

In other news, Multapplied Networks, a global provider of advanced bonding solutions, made headlines with the news that its Internet bonding solution would soon be making its way to the market after nearly four years of testing.

The offering will drive network performance as well as redundancy via its capability to combine an array of circuits from more than one carrier into just one Internet connection.

Best known for its flagship product that was designed from the ground up in partnership with the two British Columbia firms Rocket Networks and Kerkhoff Technologies, while the solution was powered originally for only its own end-user customers it was quickly realized that it could prove to be an invaluable tool for ISPs throughout the globe.

Closing out the week, AppNeta unveiled a device monitoring product that will now be encompassed within its suite of network performance management (NPM) solutions.

It is touted as including capabilities such as end-to-end performance insight, active bandwidth monitoring, active application performance monitoring and end-to-end QoS verification to multiple users. In addition, the company is claiming that it is currently the only network performance management solution available that requires no additional assistance from administration.

“We are excited to offer a new approach to network performance management designed to monitor and evaluate today’s modern networks from one, integrated solution that looks across network paths, packet captures, flow data and device status,� said Jim Melvin, CEO, AppNeta. “We are taking network performance management to a new level where it can actually be easy, affordable, and provide visibility we know that you cannot get from traditional SNMP solutions today.�

To keep up-to-date with all of the latest and greatest in the network packer broker space, be sure to stay glued to this community exclusively on TMCnet!

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TMCnet Live Chat Week in Review

December 01, 2012

If you are a customer who is trying to reach a company, not being able to navigate through the phone menu and waiting for hours before you can speak to a live representative will leave you frustrated. With the help of live chat software, business owners can give their customers the option of getting a high level of customer service.

Kicking off the week, 72 percent of the participants in an Internet shopping survey conducted by LogMeIn (News - Alert) said live chat was their preferred method of communication and 67 percent said they would be more receptive to being proactively invited to engage in a live chat.

So, how is BoldChat’s proactive live chat different than other live chats? A recent BoldChat video shares the inside track. Proactive live chat offers different options to engage and it can be done manually or automatically.Many of the features focus on customizing the services to meet the needs of the customer and the business. Additionally, the self serve option combined with BoldChat’s professional service staff is a bonus. Even after the proactive chat is installed, companies can go into the application and make changes. If they face a challenge, they can call BoldChat for assistance – something rarely offered in a live chat solution.

As customers happen upon a site looking for an answer to a question, they don’t always know where to look to find the information they need. BoldChat has built a platform designed to enable communication between a company and its customers to drive a quality customer interaction and increase conversions.

In other news, on Cyber Monday, LivePerson (News - Alert) , Inc., a provider of intelligent engagement solutions that increases conversions and improves the customer experience online, hosted over 860,000 live chats— an increase of 30 percent from 2011 and a new daily record for the company. In addition to the record breaking number of live chat interactions, LivePerson clients utilized engagement tools, delivering personalized offers and click-to-call invitations.

The solution offers a cloud-based platform that enables businesses to proactively connect in real-time with their customers. The platform also enables customer interaction via chat, voice, and content delivery at the right time and through the right channel, including websites, social media, and mobile devices. LivePerson’s intelligent engagement is driven by behavioral analytics, producing connections based on an understanding of business objectives and the needs of customers.

"Consumers today are demanding real-time assistance whenever they are connecting with a brand, especially during the busy holiday season," said Robert LoCascio, founder and CEO of LivePerson. "The millions of personalized interactions we enable through our platform is a testament to both the value and demand for real-time intelligent engagement. Our customers are not only creating a meaningful customer experience, they are driving new levels of business success."

Lastly, as companies begin to encourage BYOD to work and more employees begin relying on cloud and IP-based services, it’s important to keep personal cell phone numbers and work phone numbers different. RingCentral unveiled that it is adding a new feature to its cloud-based business phone service. The new service will allow employees and business associates to call, text, and fax to a business number.

If an employee is using their own personal device, they can route the calls from the business number to their mobile device. So, the caller will be able to reach the intended party using one number without realizing they called the associates personal phone.

“This is the industry’s first SMS for business phone systems,� said Matt McGinnis,RingCentral (News - Alert) director of product marketing. “Texting for work gives you more efficiency, flexibility, and empowerment. You can really leverage your business number to improve customer contact, colleague collaboration, etc.�

Want to learn more about the latest in communications and technology? Then be sure to attend ITEXPO Miami 2013, Jan 29- Feb. 1 in Miami, Florida.  Stay in touch with everything happening at ITEXPO (News - Alert). Follow us on Twitter.

CUNY Chooses Blackboard to Establish Full Teaching and Learning Platform

The City University of New York (CUNY), the largest urban university system in the nation, has partnered with Blackboard (News - Alert) to establish a full teaching and learning platform across all of its campuses.

James Haggard, deputy CIO at CUNY, explained that the team at CUNY is trying to structure the university so that they can chart a strategy that is flexible and able to change with the industry over time. “Blackboard is the partner to help us do that,� he confidently says in a statement.

This 10-year agreement with Blackboard includes the provision of core technology infrastructure as well as services to support significant growth and expansion in online learning.

To the University, Blackboard intends to provide a dynamic platform, boasting mobile access on native apps on a full range of smartphones and tablets combined with the company’s robust Web conferencing and synchronous learning capabilities. Company officials further said that the platform is built around Blackboard's flagship learning management system (LMS).

With the platform, CUNY expects to support its rapidly expanding continuing education program. According to the University, the program is bringing more education opportunities to working adults and professional students.

Over the past three years, CUNY has seen rapid growth in enrollments. University officials found that competitors will not be able to scale to meet their needs in the way Blackboard is equipped to do, and so it was selected as the best long-term partner based on confidence in the company’s product roadmap and vision for online learning.

CUNY’s officials added that they are leveraging a broader set of Blackboard technologies to offer a more interactive experience for over 540,000 students each semester. Additionally, the integrated technologies offer greater depth of capabilities, as paired with the company’s proven ability to scale across large systems and support intensive use.

With the deployment of Blackboard Learn as the core platform across the system, CUNY can truly create a seamless experience for students and faculty who may move from one campus to another.

Additionally, Blackboard Collaborate, a Web conferencing solution, is integrated directly within the LMS, allowing students and faculty to meet and interact virtually for a variety of formal and informal purposes. Company officials said that this provides them a more powerful and engaging learning experience.

Blackboard is a provider of enterprise technology and innovative solutions that work to improve the experience of millions of students and learners worldwide everyday.

Want to learn more about the latest in communications and technology? Then be sure to attend ITEXPO Miami 2013, Jan 29- Feb. 1 in Miami, Florida.  Stay in touch with everything happening at ITEXPO (News - Alert). Follow us on Twitter.

Edited by Allison Boccamazzo

New Study Reveals DVRs to be in 52 Percent of Homes with Pay-TV Service

Gone are the days when watching soap operas involved VHS tapes and making certain that tapes were rewound. Now, recording shows isn’t just for daytime lovers or for those who have kids in sports or other nighttime commitments – they are increasingly becoming the primary way people are enjoying watching TV.

When DVRs first hit the scene, they were something of an exciting novelty, promising a future that didn’t involve accidentally taping Days of Our Lives over baby’s first steps. Initially, most people didn’t even know them as DVRs, knowing them as their brand name “TiVo (News - Alert).� When cable companies first started introducing whole-home systems, everyone started jumping on the bandwagon.

So much so that according to a new study, DVRs are in over half of American households that have pay-TV service. The study, conducted by Leichtman Research Group, surveyed 1,300 households, finding that of those households with pay-TV service, 52 percent had a DVR – representing about 45 of all American households. Five years ago, when Nielsen conducted a similar study, DVRs were only in 13.5 percent of households. At such a high rate of adoption, it won’t be long until that the number of people living without DVRs are in a very small minority.

Image via Shutterstock

What does this mean for television? As fewer and fewer people watch live ads, selling ad space for OnDemand channels is becoming increasingly important. Other channels, such as USA, have started taking their own piece of the Hulu (News - Alert) ad pie. To prepare for the upcoming season of Suits, for example, USA has made the entire first season available through their OnDemand channel. 

Other stations including NBC, ABC and the WB have also started making their episodes available online through their site directly, meaning that ad money is going to them, not Hulu. While this widespread popularity of DVRs does not mean it is impossible to sell ad space anymore, it does mean that stations will have to get a bit more creative about monetizing their shows.

Want to learn more about the latest in communications and technology? Then be sure to attend ITEXPO Miami 2013, Jan 29- Feb. 1 in Miami, Florida.  Stay in touch with everything happening at ITEXPO (News - Alert). Follow us on Twitter.

Edited by Allison Boccamazzo

Twitter’s Going to Court

November 30, 2012

By Brittany Walters-Bearden, TMCnet Contributor

Twitter (News - Alert), Incorporated has had a recent run-in with the legal system…and lost. PeopleBrowsr, Incorporated, one of the largest data analytics companies in the US, is relying on information obtained through a system called a Firehose to gather information for its clients, and they're not too happy with Twitter's recent changes.

The Twitter Firehose is the daily stream of tweets that generally amount to a daily total of more than 400 million. PeopleBrowsr has paid to access this Firehose to gather information from the tweets, which they sell to their many clients.

Twitter, who in a new concept to make more money, decided that it was going to change the amount of access outside companies could have to its Firehose. On the other hand, PeopleBrowsr and other information-gathering companies alike have developed their business and success around having complete access to Twitter’s Firehose. Needless to say, this new modification could devastate their company’s well-being. 

In light of this, PeopleBrowsr took this issue to court and has had a temporary restraining order placed on Twitter to prevent them from limiting the amount of information that can be gathered from the Firehose and the tweets found on it.

Image via Shutterstock

PeopleBrowsr provides information for a vast amount of industries, including advertising companies, airlines, automotive industry, technology companies, entertainment, retail outlets and software developers. The company also provides information to government groups, public relations companies and advertising agencies to help them decide on effective marketing strategies for consumers or targeted groups. Further, it helped developed Kred, a company that uses the data from PeopleBrowsr to determine the relevance of Twitter users outreach and influence.

Though a San Francisco judge has issued a temporary injunction, the two groups will return to court in January to see if Twitter has the right to enforce a clause in its user agreement that says they can terminate a contract without cause at their discretion. Founder of PeopleBrowsr, John David Rich, says that if Twitter is allowed to restrict their information that it will cripple his company. Twitter, he says, has made consistent promises that it will maintain an “open ecosystem� for its data.

Twitter lawyers only responded with, “This is Contracts 101.We believe the case is without merit and will vigorously defend against it."

Edited by Allison Boccamazzo

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