December 27, 2010

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NATD in the news
Book review



NATD in the news

NACR announces new accreditations
As part of its ongoing initiative to expand its technical certifications and multivendor expertise, communications solutions provider NACR (North American Communications Resource, Inc.) announced it has earned additional accreditations in support of the Avaya Agile Communication Environment (ACE) and Avaya Aura Contact Center. As the largest Avaya channel partner worldwide, NACR is a leading provider of value-added communications solutions. NACR is now accredited as a Full Service provider of Avaya ACE, an open software platform for building multivendor Communications Enabled Business Processes (CEBP) and Unified Communications (UC) applications. As such, NACR is authorized to install and maintain Avaya ACE, which provides interfaces for developing custom applications and for prepackaged applications that integrate with common business platforms. In addition, the company has earned Service Assist accreditation for sales of the Avaya Aura Contact Center — including Contact Center 7 (CC7) and Avaya’s next-generation product — and will complete Full Service requirements in the near future. NACR previously completed Full Service accreditations for Avaya Business Communications Manager (BCM), Communication Server 1000 (CS1000), and Call Pilot Unified Messaging.
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Global Knowledge named Avaya Learning Partner
Global Knowledge announced that it is participating in the newly launched Avaya Learning Partner Program in North America, Europe and the Middle East. Global Knowledge has a long history as a premier training provider of enterprise communications curricula. That experience lays the foundation for the company’s expanded role as an Avaya Learning Partner, in which Global Knowledge will bring Avaya’s full portfolio to North America, Europe, and the Middle East.  The Avaya partnership designation authorizes Global Knowledge to teach product-specific Avaya instructor-led courses using Avaya-branded training materials to its worldwide customers. As a result, Global Knowledge is now positioned to offer training and certification solutions on all leading vendors in the unified communications space. Avaya courses from Global Knowledge are available in classrooms, live over the Internet in virtual classrooms, in self-paced e-Learning formats, or as private, on-site courses that can be tailored to the needs of the organization.

Calabrio software now compliant with Avaya Aura

Calabrio, Inc. announced that its Calabrio Call Recording and Calabrio Quality Management software products are now compliant with Avaya Aura, making its full suite of Calabrio One applications available to Avaya customers. Calabrio call recording and quality management products make it easy for enterprises to capture customer interactions to ensure compliance and validate transactions, as well as evaluate and improve quality to lower costs and increase revenue. The applications are now compliance-tested by Avaya for compatibility with Avaya Aura Communication Manager 5.2 and Avaya Aura Application Enablement Services 5.2. Calabrio is a member of the Avaya DevConnect program—an initiative to develop, market and sell innovative third-party products that interoperate with Avaya technology and extend the value of a company’s investment in its network.  
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Book review

PM Crash Course for IT ProfessionalsCisco Unified Computing System (UCS)
Reviewed by Jeff Owen, Independent IT Consultant

Cisco Unified Computing System (UCS) provides an excellent overview of UCS and Cisco’s view of the next evolutionary step in data centers and virtualization.  Cisco’s UCS is not only a new data center concept; it is also a product line for Cisco.  However, this book is not just about UCS. Therefore the book may be useful in other data center design situations even though its focus is on Cisco’s UCS.  The authors provide sufficient detail for any infrastructure designer or manager to understand and evaluate UCS. 

This book is a useful primer and ongoing reference for anyone serious about implementing the Cisco Unified Computing System solution in their organization. It includes web-site link information where appropriate in the text, a short glossary, and a detailed bibliography that also makes it an excellent reference book for data center planning beyond UCS.  Beyond the reading, the Cisco Unified Computing System Platform Emulator Lite on the included CD makes it easy to create an evaluation environment to determine what UCS can do for your organization.  New uses and applications rely on virtualized data centers.  Whether or not you are a Cisco user, this book can help in your evaluation of, and planning for, upgrading the data center.

Jeff Owen is an independent consultant with 20+ years experience in telecommunications/networking and IT. He can be reached at

Authors: Silvano Gal, Tommi Salli, and Roger Andersson
Softcover: 400 pages
Publisher: Cisco Press (July 2010)
ISBN – 10: 1587141930
ISBN – 13: 9781587141935
List Price:  $50.00; Amazon: $40.96
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Grandstream announces new enterprise HD IP phone
Grandstream Networks introduced the new entry-level enterprise desktop SIP telephone GXP1450 with a list price of US$99.00. The 2-line GXP1450 delivers all the features, quality and ROI required for today’s enterprise customers including Grandstream’s superior HD audio quality for crystal clear voice communications, LCD XML customization, automated provisioning, integrated personal Web productivity applications, and advanced security protection. The GXP1450 joins Grandstream’s growing portfolio of recently introduced HD SIP phones including the GXP2100, GXP2110 and GXP2120.  The GXP1450 is commercially available for purchase now through Grandstream’s worldwide distribution channels.

Telegato announces new IP-PBX release
Telegato LLC announced the availability of Version 6 of its easy-to-use Cheetah Series IP-PBX.  The company also announced Version 6 is now available through a convenient leasing program offering low front-end cost. A user-friendly design is the primary focus of the Cheetah Series. The five-minute Wizard is a friendly non-technical approach to the sometimes overwhelming task of setting up an IP-PBX. The Wizard guides the user through the steps of setting extensions, hunt groups, ring groups, music on hold, dial plans, voice mail and the Auto Attendant. The Cheetah IP-PBX is built from the ground up by a team of experienced engineers with decades of telephony knowledge and is not a repackaged open source solution. Version 6 of the user friendly Cheetah Series is perfect for any small or medium sized business and scales from 25 extensions up to 200. Telegato offers the Cheetah Series through resellers as well as directly to a wide range of businesses.
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Infonetics research: North American carriers to reap $246B
Market research firm Infonetics Research released excerpts from its updated Residential Voice, Data, and Video Services in North America market share and forecast report. “Considering that revenue from video services will rival that of voice services by 2014, one of the more interesting trends going on in the residential services market is the number of video subscribers that are jumping from cable to satellite and telco IPTV. In 2010, residential cable video subscriber numbers are flat, while satellite video subscribers have been increasing slowly but surely over the last few years, and telco IPTV subscribers are up 40% from last year. Video services are proving to be a hard fought battle. While cable operators have a legacy in North America, they have been unbending in their pricing policies, and as a result are losing record number of subscribers to less expensive alternatives,” notes Diane Myers, Infonetics Research‘s directing analyst for VoIP and IMS.

Telecom service providers are bringing in $245.5 billion from North American households subscribing to voice, video and Internet access services in 2010. This represents a 2.1% increase in revenue over 2009. Infonetics expects the residential services market to grow to $270 billion in 2014, as revenue from voice services declines while broadband access and video service revenue increases. The number of residential mobile broadband subscribers in North America is nearly doubling in 2010 over 2009, to about 15 million, and is forecast by Infonetics to jump to 70 million by 2014. In the first half of 2010 (1H10), AT&T leads in residential mobile voice service revenue with 29%, Verizon is second with 26%, but when mobile voice subscribers are counted, the shares are reversed, with Verizon leading with 29%, AT&T second with 26% (AT&T generates more revenue per subscriber).
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Mitel goes with Accord Communications
Mitel tied up with Accord Communications Ltd. to provide its latest solutions that will help businesses across India to communicate and collaborate in new and innovative ways, on any device. As per the agreement, Accord will deliver solutions and services to market using the Mitel’s “Freedom Architecture,” which provides a single, cloud-ready software stream that delivers an array of communications options for businesses looking to integrate a voice solution into best-in-class networks and applications. “Under the strategic alliance, Accord would bring Mitel unified communications into verticals such as healthcare, IT/ITeS, education, hospitality, retail, financial services, government, defense establishments and manufacturing, in addition to providing a pan-India presence, installation, maintenance support and training,” Accord Communications Director P. K. Mohta said.
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Communication, efficiency and value key advantages of nearshoring  
CIOs and technology decision-makers operating in today’s economy need to ensure that every investment in new applications results in tangible value for the business. Nearshoring – using an IT partner within the Americas – represents some clear advantages over offshoring, especially when delivered with Agile methodologies and Lean principles, according to a recent research paper by Nearshore Americas and Ci&T, a consulting and technology outsourcing services company. Companies using nearshore partners routinely see better client-provider communication, faster time of delivery and greater value in their application development projects, enabling better quality software in every engagement. Offshore providers trumpet their ability to deliver custom applications at a significant cost-savings to the client. But the reality is that communication issues and geographical distance in these projects may limit the gains of labor arbitrage at the expense of productivity and delivery of true value to the business. For this reason, nearshore IT services providers for application development can be the perfect solution when agility and business contribution are critical: reducing costs by outsourcing while taking advantage of time zone, geographical and cultural similarities.
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Westcon Group expands global distribution strategy with ArcSight
Westcon Group, Inc. announced new North American and expanded European distribution agreements with ArcSight, an HP company and a leading global provider of cybersecurity and compliance solutions. The announcement marks the first North American agreement between the two companies, powering Westcon reseller partners with the ArcSight Enterprise Threat and Risk Management (ETRM) platform. Leveraging its industry-leading global reseller footprint, Westcon Group will distribute ArcSight solutions to 10 major markets across the globe. The ArcSight ETRM platform is a highly integrated product suite for collecting, analyzing and assessing security and risk information. The solution enables companies to easily safeguard their business by delivering complete visibility into all activity across the IT infrastructure, including: external threats such as malware and hackers; internal threats such as data breaches and fraud; risks from application flaws and configuration changes; and compliance pressures from failed audits.
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