Articles about Telephony

Moshi Moshi 03 Handset

Look, no handsets: How to do telephony without a phone

As I sit at my desk, I have two phones in front of me. One is a cordless Panasonic that talks to a base station via the DECT protocol, and thence to the public phone network via a knackered old piece of copper that broke the other day. The other is a snazzy mobile number with a picture of a piece of fruit on it and the ability …
Dave Cartwright, 12 Mar 2015
money notes lifted up

Why IP telephony is about more than just saving money

In the last few years IP-based voice communication has increasingly come to the attention of business managers. Internet-based voice communication has been around for years in a number of forms, some hideously cranky and others very effective. My personal watershed in the credibility of long-distance IP voice comms was …
Dave Cartwright, 23 Feb 2015
GEC PABX 3 switchboard and operator

Are you ready to ditch the switchboard and move to IP telephony?

When I was growing up it was something of a novelty to have a phone in the house. And when I started working in IT in 1989 my company was still encouraging staff to wait to make calls until after 1pm, when peak time ended. There was something unusual about the new phone system we deployed that year: the Philips Sopho-S was a …
Dave Cartwright, 17 Feb 2015
GEC PABX 3 switchboard and operator

Sit back and let someone else manage your telephony

If you are a small company, it takes a certain amount of time and effort to maintain a phone system. This is not a huge problem as the system sits in the corner and gets on with its job most of the time; you have to fiddle with it only to set up new extensions or change the names on items when people leave or join. For a medium …
Dave Cartwright, 18 Mar 2015
Cartoon - Private SNAFU

Cisco shipped UCS servers with rotten RAID settings

If you've been wondering about the server performance in your Cisco Business Edition 6000/7000 telephony system, wonder no more: The Borg has issued a field notice that the system shipped with misconfigured RAID. The Cisco field notice advises sysadmins that the correct settings for the kit are as follows: Read Ahead Policy …

NSA: We'll move your metadata into /dev/null when you stop suing us

The NSA has said it will delete its mountain of private telephone records belonging to millions of Americans – just as soon as people stop suing it for having done so. The agency's slurping of phone numbers, the times and dates of calls, and (in some case) the locations of cellphone calls, was exposed in the first-ever leak of …
Iain Thomson, 27 Jul 2015

NSA continues mass slurping of Americans' phone metadata

The NSA can continue to monitor when and where millions and millions of Americans use their cellphones, and who they're calling and texting. The USA Freedom Act is supposed to slightly rein in that level of surveillance, by forcing telcos to collect the records and make the Feds apply for the information. That doesn't kick in …
Iain Thomson, 01 Jul 2015
NSA parody T-shirt

PGP Zimmermann: 'You want privacy? Well privacy costs MONEY'

IP EXPO 2015 Delivering a keynote in London today, the famous inventor of PGP complained that consumers want privacy for free, forcing his company Silent Circle to focus on selling secure telephony to enterprises - while he would like to see it more widely employed. Silent Circle, the cryptographic communications firm at which Zimmermann …
Selection of Australian banknotes

Turnbullnomics trashed as Oz regulator cuts telecoms prices

A bunch of Australian fixed telephony and broadband users are about to suffer under a regime of lower prices. In spite of communications minister Malcolm Turnbull's 2014 assertion that lower prices are against consumer's interests, the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission has told Telstra to cut its wholesale fixed …
New World Computing Inc, King's Bounty

Alternative Networks: CEO retiring, long live...

Alternative Networks will wave goodbye to long-serving CEO Ed Spurrier at the end of this fiscal year in September, with current chief operations man Mark Quartermaine waiting in the wings for the top job. The LSE-listed comms and tech outfit confirmed the succession plans today as it outlined half-year numbers for fiscal 2015, …
Paul Kunert, 03 Jun 2015
Privacy image

Dutch DPA says government's data retention plans still illegal

The Netherlands' Data Protection Authority has criticised that government's proposed data retention legislation. The government put forward amendments to its data retention regime in response to the April 2014 European Court of Justice decision that invalidated the EU's Data Retention Directive (along the way causing trouble for …

Google roasts critical twin Android bugs in new Marshmallow OS

Google has patched two critical remote code execution vulnerabilities as part of a suite of seven fixes in its fourth round of Android patching since August. The over-the-air updates set to hit Nexus, Samsung, and Android Open Source Project (AOSP) devices first for Google's latest Marshmallow Android operating system. Google …
Darren Pauli, 03 Nov 2015

It's ALIVE! Network Services contract finally staggers upright

The government's much-delayed £2bn Network Services contract has finally gone live after 12 months of blood, sweat, tears and therapy on the part of suppliers. The framework is comprised of 61 suppliers, according to Innopsis, the representative body for public services network companies. Of those, 30 per cent are SMEs, the …
Kat Hall, 16 Jul 2015
Mats Granryd is the new GSMA Director General

GSMA appoints Mats Granryd as new director general

The new director general of the mobile phone operators organisation is Mats Granryd, who will take up his new role on January 1 2016. Granryd’s appointment follows the departure of Anne Bouverot last month. Bouverot has gone to head up French security and identity solution vendor Morpho. Granryd will be joing the GSMA from …
Simon Rockman, 25 Aug 2015

Jolla chief quits: Fawning Putin lickspittles to take over?

Jolla co-founder, COO and figurehead Marc Dillon has quit the Finnish phone outfit. Jolla was created as Sailfish and escaped from the burning platforms of Nokia to develop the MeeGo (formerly Maemo) Linux OS for phones. Nokia abandoned that, taking key developers to the startup. This year, it sidelined hardware design to …
Andrew Orlowski, 09 Sep 2015
Dunce's cap graffiti by cc 2.0 attribution

Broadband powered by home gateways? Whose bright idea was THIS?

Fibre-to-the-node can help squeeze the last drop of sweat out of copper telephony networks, but it has a problem: nodes need electrons, and there might not be a copper path upstream to the exchange for 48V power. So the standards body The Broadband Forum thinks powering nodes using household electricity is a good idea. The …

Telstra's bush broadband boxes bugged, bashed, botted

Update Telstra has patched a vulnerability that could have seen regional Australians suffer interception of their internet connections through a remotely-exploitable vulnerability in a series of wireless terminals the nation's dominant telco deploys under its universal service obligation. Melbourne security researcher Tim Noise (@ …
Darren Pauli, 03 Aug 2015

Where's the Network Services framework at? Uh, dunno, says

Clown Crown Commercial Services has told prospective candidates for the mega Network Services framework that it will confirm the line-up of suppliers at some point. Maybe soon. It is now more than 41 weeks since the government’s supposed professional procurement arm launched the tender for the Network Services, a four year …
Paul Kunert, 24 Jun 2015
SMS inventor Matti Makkonen

Vale Matti Makkonen, SMS dreamer

Matti Makkonen, a figure widely held to have influenced the development of SMS, has died at the relatively young age of 63. According to BT, it took some years for Makkonen's pitch to Finland's Telecoms and Postal agency in 1984 to become a reality in 1992. It took even longer for SMS to really hit its straps, because carriers …
Two dollars

Altice to buy controlling stake in Suddenlink for NINE BEEELION dollars

Patrick Drahi's telecommunications firm Altice is set to make its first foray into the American telecommunications market after acquiring a controlling stake in Suddenlink for over $9bn. The Wall Street Journal first reported that Drahi was in "advanced talks" to capture Suddenlink Communications, one of the United States' ten …
Twilight Zone, 'Time Enough At Last'

Network Services delayed AGAIN. Suppliers: Oh FFS

It is week 40 of the Network Services framework tender and suppliers are still in the dark about the cause of the latest delay - which means nobody knows who's made the cut and who hasn't. A prior information notice for the framework, estimated to be worth between £100m and £2bn over four years, was published in July and a …
Paul Kunert, 16 Jun 2015

Virgin Media to splurge BEELLIONS on UK network infrastructure expansion

Virgin Media temporarily pushed BT's shares down more than 2 per cent on Friday, after it announced a juicy £3bn cash injection into Britain's internet infrastructure. The cable company, which was bought by John Malone's Liberty Global roughly 18 months ago, promised to bring broadband speeds of 152 Mbps to four million more …
Kelly Fiveash, 16 Feb 2015
Departing Cisco CEO John Chambers

Cisco CEO Chambers to step down, passes baton to Robbins

Analysis Cisco has finally made the long-anticipated decision about a replacement for long-time CEO John Chambers: 49-year-old Chuck Robbins. Robbins is no newcomer to Cisco, having been with the company since 1997. His most recent role was as senior veep for worldwide operations, and Cisco's announcement also credits Robbins with …
Paul Winchell and dummy

NEW BAN sees Australia HIDE value of networking kit imports

The Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) has quietly stopped revealing the value of communications and networking products imported to Australia. The nation's new such requests appear in August's Confidential Commodities List, released last week, adds an entry for “Machines for the reception, conversion and transmission or …
Simon Sharwood, 13 Sep 2015
The Register breaking news

TeleWare makes telephony a little more cloudy

TeleWare has launched an enterprise MVNO that routes every call through the office PBX, reducing the mobile carrier to a bit pipe at best. The new offering – dubbed TeleWare Mobile, with all the panache typical of enterprise offerings – intercepts mobile calls at the operator to route them into the office systems, where all the …
Bill Ray, 16 Jun 2011
Interim logo for Digital Transformation Office

Turnbull's Digital Transformers discover log files contain more than meets the eye

Hey government agencies, there's more than meets the eye in your data Malcolm Turnbull's legacy-hunting Digital Transformation Office (DTO) has discovered analytics. The Office's latest blogged emanation explains that “The DTO's mission is to create digital services that are easy to find and use. Service analytics will give us …
Simon Sharwood, 02 Jun 2015
Telephone. Copyright: macinate

Landline deregulation: Big EU telcos have Skype to thank

Traditional telcos have caught a break from the European Commission with the fixed telephony and the wholesale fixed call markets set to be immediately deregulated. However, Steelie Neelie Kroes, the outgoing digital agenda commissioner, denied that this was a sop to get lots of very large and powerful companies on-side, via …
Jennifer Baker, 09 Oct 2014

Hey, posh boy. Fancy a £200m PHONE THREESOME?

A massive phone and network connectivity services framework between three local authorities is up for grabs, valued up to £200m over four years. A contract notice for by the procurement peeps at the Royal Borough of Chelsea and Kensington was published this week on the Official Journal of the European Union. The tender for …
Kat Hall, 09 Jan 2015
firing range - target in cross hairs

Citrix warns it will miss Q1 earnings guidance

Citrix has announced that it will not deliver the financial results it promised the markets. “Revenue for the quarter is expected to be in the range of $755 million to $760 million, below the company's guidance of $780 million to $790 million,” says in its mea culpa preliminary Q1 results released today. “Net income for the …
Simon Sharwood, 10 Apr 2015
Facebook WhatsApp

Chat app WhatsApp gift-wraps free yaps for Apple iPhone saps

WhatsApp is now offering free voice calls to iPhones, less than a month after the feature debuted for Android. Version 2.12.1 of the telephony app for iSO will allow Apple smartmobe users to talk over their internet connections. The "WhatsApp Calling" feature is going to be rolled out "slowly over the next several weeks" …

Shadow minister for Fun calls for Openreach separation

Chris Bryant MP has added his support to the lobby which wants to see Openreach split from BT. This is just one area under investigation as part of Ofcom's 2015 strategic review. The previous review a decade earlier saw Openreach ring-fenced as a separate BT organisation. However, the view of most of its customers – who are …
Simon Rockman, 24 Aug 2015

Cisco promises Lync link for its UC kit and collaborationware

Cisco has spent the last couple of years talking up its unified communications and collaboration portfolios, often suggesting it is at the top of the market. If that assertion is correct it would be quite a coup, given that other players have a long head start. Cisco's been here before with IP telephony, a field in which it …
Simon Sharwood, 18 Jun 2014
The Register breaking news

Ofcom talks up telephony spectrum trading

Changes to the licences held by the mobile operators will shortly enable them to buy and sell their radio spectrum, along with the obligations that go along with it. The changes (pdf, dull, really dull) come into effect on 4 July and are largely what the regulator proposed back in February. There are a few clarifications based …
Bill Ray, 20 Jun 2011

Backwaters in rural England getting non-BT gigabit broadband

Rural English villages that almost nobody has heard of are set to receive broadband connections that are nearly fifty times faster than the national average. Baywood, Wooton, Dry, Sunningwell, Boars Hill and others will benefit from infrastructure being rolled out by small telco Gigaclear, which is laying fibre to the premises …
Simon Rockman, 12 May 2015
Michael Hayden

'No evidence' Snowden was working for foreign power says ex-NSA boss

Former National Security Agency director Michael Hayden this week told a conference about how little fallout the NSA has suffered after the Snowden leaks, and detailed how his former agency would hack other governments. He said to his audience at the Wall Street Journal's chief financial officer conference: If somebody would …
Iain Thomson, 18 Jun 2015

Outage STILL hitting Virgin Media Business broadband customers

A number of Virgin Media broadband customers have been cut off due to a firmware update cock-up, The Register can reveal. Customers using the company's Super Hub 1 services were affected by the outage at the beginning of the weekend, with the company saying it is "working to resolve the problem". However, it is unclear how many …
Kat Hall, 03 Dec 2014

Working over Christmas? Government tech suppliers will be

The government’s tech procurement arm is asking suppliers to burn candles brightly over the festive season by filling in a 700-question Network Services tender after redrafting it. An OJEU contract notice for the framework, worth between £100m to £2bn over four years, was rewritten because suppliers claimed it was convoluted. As …
Paul Kunert, 22 Dec 2014

US court rubber-stamps dragnet metadata surveillance (again)

A US federal court has rubber stamped approval for the NSA to carry on with its controversial dragnet collection of Americans' phone records. The decision by the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court to green-light the NSA's mass surveillance of US phone call metadata until 1 June comes a year after President Barack Obama …
John Leyden, 02 Mar 2015
The Register breaking news

Google plugs new-age telephony into US carrier phones

Google has teamed with US wireless carrier Sprint to integrate the carrier's cell phones with Google Voice – the new-age telephony web service that lets you attach a single number to multiple phones, turn your voicemail messages into emails, send free texts, make free domestic calls, and dial international numbers on the cheap. …
Cade Metz, 21 Mar 2011

Post Office launches mobe service for aged greybeards

The Post Office has launched its own mobile phone service. The organisation plays hard on the value for money that its new pre-pay tariffs offer, but in practice the market is so competitive it’s hard to make that stand up. While the headline prices are cheaper, many rivals – notably Tesco Mobile – offer top-up bonuses, which …
Simon Rockman, 22 Jun 2015

ACCC nixes Telstra wholesale gouge

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) has driven its nope-mobile down to Collins Street and dropped a couple of tons of forget-it at the door of Australia's dominant carrier Telstra: rather than putting up prices for fixed voice and broadband services, the carrier's asked to cop a price cut. The regulator …
The Register breaking news

IP telephony: Still happy?

Reg Reader Studies The benefits of IP telephony (IPT) are now increasingly understood, and as offerings proliferate, we are starting to see wider scale adoption become reality across all types of business. But has the move to IPT been all it’s cracked up to be? Are problems around service and call quality still causing major headaches? What model …
Jon Collins, 23 Sep 2009
Fight sticker

Chaos reigns as Coms plc CEO tries (fails) to stage boardroom coup

A senior level dust-up has erupted at Coms Plc with CEO David Breith trying to stage a boardroom coup, amid widening losses and a spat over Coms shares that he quietly bought. The acquisitive London-based comms biz, which swallowed certain assets from Redstone and telephony player Actimax, confirmed the chaos in a stock market …
Paul Kunert, 25 Feb 2015

DC judge rips into the NSA over mass surveillance

In an extraordinary opinion, DC judge Richard Leon has laid into the NSA and US government for its bulk collection of phone records, and issued an injunction banning the collection of metadata on several individuals. Railing against arguments made by the government to dismiss the case, claims it needed more time to make …
Kieren McCarthy, 09 Nov 2015

How does a global corporation switch to IP Voice?

Not so long ago I worked with a company that had more than a dozen offices around the world. Each had its own phone system – a total of five different makes – of which only two could handle IP telephony. As a colleague once put it, we used to “spend a lot of time phoning ourselves”. International calls to our own staff, …
Dave Cartwright, 04 Mar 2015

Pension quango's £18.5m project FINALLY goes live... 2 months late

Exclusive An £18.5m project carried out on behalf of the UK's Pension Protection Fund (PPF) has finally gone live - two months late. A comprehensive IT infrastructure overhaul and modernisation of hardware and software was due to be installed and running by 28 February. However, The Register has learned that CGI missed both the February …
Gavin Clarke, 01 Jul 2014
Tony Montana on the phone in Scarface

US drug squad cops: We snooped on innocent Americans' phone calls too!

The US Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) has admitted that for years it kept a secret log of phone calls made by American citizens calling overseas. Much like the secret NSA and FBI databases, the DEA got its information under subpoena from American telecommunications companies, irrespective of whether or not the target had …
Iain Thomson, 17 Jan 2015
Cellular antenna. Source: Vxla/Flickr

5G needs new connectivity methods, say Spanish boffins

While millimeter-wave radio frequencies are hyped as the future of high-speed wireless networks, they're severely range-limited. A group of Spanish boffins has proposed using user context information like location to help mobile devices get the best speed. As they explain in their paper at Arxiv, it's not enough just to run an …

Good news! Your job's not going to the Philippines

Vietnam is now outsourcers' preferred host nation, but Bulgaria is making a tilt for the top spot, according to real estate outfit Cushman & Wakefield's annual “Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) and Shared Services Location Index”. The study (PDF) ranks nations by costs, risks and conditions, with a 50/20/30 weighting for each …
Simon Sharwood, 22 Apr 2015

UK biz Six Degrees puts up 'For Sale' sign outside corporate HQ

A sales process is under way at mid-market managed voice and data hosting biz Six Degrees, with a corporate financier appointed to sniff out interested buyers. Private equity backer Penta Capital is eyeing up the exit route four years after stumping up £60m to back the former management team at SpiriTel to execute a buy-and- …
Paul Kunert, 05 Feb 2015