About telovations

Telovations is a next generation communication company that innovates the way you communicate.

New Year, New Beginnings

For last year’s words belong to last year’s language
And next year’s words await another voice.
And to make an end is to make a beginning.
~T.S. Eliot

This New Year’s Eve post truly signifies a new beginning…a changing of the guard if you will.  As you may, or may not know, we have been acquired by Bright House Networks, and the acquisition is effective as of January 1st.

Image

As we look back, we are proud of the hard work and dedication by Telovites, past and present, that opened the door for new beginnings.  We are grateful that almost all of us are walking through that door together.  Looking forward, we are excited for this new opportunity.    Bright House shares our commitment to customers, our commitment to providing the best in customer care, and our commitment to innovation.   Combining our cloud-based unified communications with Bright House’s fiber network and broader portfolio of managed services means that we will be able to provide our clients with the most advanced business communication capabilities in the nation.  For that, we are humbled.

As for now, this little blog is going off-line.  It may just be temporary through the transition, it may come back as something a little different, or it may not come back at all.  We want to thank you for reading and sharing our passion for technology and telecommunications.  We hope that you enjoyed our posts and maybe learned something new.

From our family to yours, we wish you peace and prosperity in 2013.
ImagePhoto by David Lee Thompson

Happy Holidays from our Family to Yours

Image

It is with a heavy heart when we think of the families in Newtown, CT.  We hope their spirits are lifted every time they hear of a random act of kindness being performed in honor of their loved ones.  26 people we have never met have instilled in us a renewed sense of what this season is truly about.  What a gift they have given us.  It is an honor to spread a little kindness in return.

If you are looking for some ideas of random acts of kindness – the Today show put together a list of ideas.  Sometimes though, the most powerful act of kindness doesn’t even cost a penny – it can be a smile and a kind word to someone who feeling down, it can be shoveling out your neighbor’s driveway, or it can be inviting someone without family to your holiday dinner.

Image

“To give pleasure to a single heart by a single act is better than a thousand heads bowing in prayer” ~ Mahatma Gandhi

We wish you love and happiness this holiday season, and a new year filled with peace and prosperity.

ImageImageImage

ROI on Hosted Voice vs. Premise Based PBX

In a recent meeting, we were discussing the current state of the economy, the time value of money, our services, and the return on investment (ROI) between Hosted Voice and Premise Based PBX (click here for a brief description of both).

Our Sr. VP of Sales, Sean Burke offered us the following insights:

Let’s say the charges for our service is $3,000/month.  You may look at that and do the following calculation to determine the ROI on our solution:  $3,000 x 36 = $108,000.

That is merely tells you how much you are going to spend on our service over the next 3 years, but speaks nothing of your ROI.

The best way to determine the value of your investment is by looking at your investment taking the time value of money into consideration.  Let’s look at this from a strict money comparison (which does not include the value of added features, innovation, support, etc.):

Here are 2 examples:

  1. CONSERVATIVE – If your company received a small business loan today from the  Small Business Administration Loan (these are actually pretty hard to get too given the economy)- the rates range from NY Prime (3.25%) + 2.25% = 5.5% to NY Prime (3.25%) + 6.5% = 9.75%.  So let’s use 7% to show a middle ground calculation.  A $3,000 monthly payment over 3 years with a 7% rate is VALUED in today’s money at = $97,159 for a difference of about $10,000 (from what was calculated above based on total $’s spent). But even this calculation is extremely conservative and here is why…7% interest is a very conservative estimate of the value of a growing companies future value.
  2. A FAST GROWING COMPANY (REAL EXAMPLE) – The average growth rate of the Inc 500 companies is 46%.  If you use this number the value of $3,000 paid monthly over 3 years is = $58,057 for a difference of about $50,000. From a business perspective/cash flow perspective – leaders of high growth companies should understand that deferring your payments to monthly amounts so that you can free those dollars to invest in your high growth entity is ALWAYS a smart decision.  Think of it this way…the company is growing by 46%.  Which means each dollar you invest in growing your business is worth $1.46 in one year; in two years it is worth $2.13, in year 3 it is worth $3.11 – so there is a much larger value to them in investing their money INTO growing their business vs. buying PBX’s.

If you are interested in learning more, please contact us – we’d love to discuss this with you.

Also, for a calculator you can use to determine the time value of your money – click here.

ImageImageImage

Long Battery Life? See ya LaTEr

If you have made the switch to an LTE device, the first thing you probably noticed is the speed:  videos don’t pause every two seconds, sites load faster, apps download faster.  Then, you probably noticed was something else moving dramatically faster….
batterybg_3When I first picked up my iPhone 5, I was impressed with its speed, then a little shocked at how fast it drained my battery.  Depending on what I was using it for, I would get a low battery warning after just a few hours.  You could almost see the percentage of battery power ticking away.  It made me wonder why.  So I did a little research and here’s what I found out:

  • MIMO (Multiple Input Multiple Output) Technology – MIMO technology uses multiple antennas – at the transmitting and receiving end.  This increases speed by spreading the existing transmission power over multiple antennas creating an array gain that allows more data to flow through at a time.  This occurs by taking advantage of multipath.  Information reaches the receiving antenna multiples times, from different angles and different times.  How does this drain the battery?  An antenna requires a power amplifier in order to send and receive information – by doubling the number of antennas in an LTE device – the drain on the battery doubles as well.

mimovssisotechnology2

  • Years of practice – 3G phones use either GSM (Global System for Mobile Communications) Technology or CDMA (Code Division Multiple Access) Technology.  Both of these mobile service technologies have been optimized over the past 20 years to be energy efficient.
  • Towers– LTE towers are fewer and farther between.  Your mobile device needs to boost its transmission power in order to connect with the LTE network.  The distance between the towers also mean that are gaps in coverage, so your phone is switching between LTE, 4G and even 3G.  Every time your mobile device needs make a scan to connect with a network, or boost its transmission power to connect to a tower –  your battery takes a hit.
  • LTE devices are co-dependent – Currently, most LTE devices cannot handle data and voice simultaneously.  Your device may be using LTE for data, but will switch back to CDMA in order to make calls and texts.  Again, to keep up with all that switching around, your battery has to work overtime.

No doubt, future generations of LTE will address the issue of excessive battery drain.  For now though, make sure you keep a charger handy.

small-square-twittersmall-square-facebooksmall-square-linkedin

Thanks to Kevin Fitchard at GigaOm for the great info!

A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to Your Inbox

We’ve all experienced that heart-in-your-throat moment:  “Wait.  Did I hit Reply or Reply to All?

nervous on computerYou cautiously check your sent messages.  You want to look, you are afraid to look… you have to look.

Or even worse.

You don’t realize your mistake until the responses start pouring in.

reply to all cartoon

You may remember the student from NYU that meant to forward an email from the bursar’s office to his mother, but instead hit ‘reply to all.’  An event that became known as Reply-Allpocalyse.  This one was tame, the students joined in and had a good time with it; the only victim was NYU’s email server.

Then there was this poor guy.  His boss sent out a company wide email giving directives on a new project.  He meant to forward the email to a coworker in which he added honest assessments of their colleagues, and how valuable they would be on the project – but he hit ‘reply all’.  Everyone in the company received the email, including the colleagues he was speaking about.

We recently had an email mix-up at work.  While it was no ‘Reply-Allpocalyse,’ we all got a chuckle about it.  The main characters are Chris (a Telovite), Maja (who wasn’t supposed to get the email) and Christian (who was).  Here’s the story:

We had a couple of busy weeks recently, between Thanksgiving Holiday call traffic, vacation time and illnesses. This lead to a very hectic communications exchange and at some point some wires got crossed. Chris went to his inbox to respond to a recent email from Christian.  Instead of opening Christian’s email, he inadvertently opened an email from Maja.  He began to address Christian’s issue.

At the last second Chris realized he was supposed to send the information to Christian and his name was not in the To or CC field. He quickly added Christian’s name without any thought to Maja’s email address being in the To field.

The email was sent – and here’s what happened:

Maja:  I am curious, why did you CC Christian?

Chris:  I’m sorry, Maja. Please ignore my previous email. That one was not intended for you and was on a completely separate subject for another client.

Christian:  Just an FYI, you sent this to another client as yours as well. Not sure if this was meant for her, for me, or both.

Chris:  Thank you, Christian. I was working Maja’s issue around the same time and started back up with the wrong draft. I’ve emailed her an apology. Thanks for catching my mistake.

Christian:  It’s ok, I actually know her from a past job so if anything that was a fortuitous mistake as we are now catching up.

And Maja also wrote me back:

Maja:  I only ask because I worked with Christian 12 years ago and last week I wanted to look him up on LinkedIn. When I saw his name, I thought to myself, I wonder if this is the same Christian? And then I got below email……life is crazy sometimes.

Christian included this in one of his replies:

From Christian to Maja:  Not sure why Chris sent this to both of us, but your name rang a bell and after a quick look-up I realized I did in fact know you. Way back around 2000, I was consulting at Student Resources I think it was called, and we worked together for about a year. I want to say Diana was our coordinator.

Anyway, glad to see your doing well. I enjoyed our time there together, not so much the work but the conversations. I still go to all the good Croatian bakeries you told me about. And in fact I have been to Croatia several times since then, along with Slovenia, Montenegro and Serbia.

They continued an email exchange, catching up as old friends.

Maja is right – life is crazy sometimes.  It’s the unexpected moments, like reconnecting with an old friends, that make it so sweet.

small-square-facebooksmall-square-twittersmall-square-linkedin

Survey Says: Work from Home for the Win!

Wrike, a social project management platform provider, conducted an on-line survey; the respondents represented organizations of all sizes.  The goal was to gather information about the respondent’s current and expected future work practices and the role virtual collaboration plays in the work habits of remote teams.

There is no disputing the mobility of today’s workforce.  Helping business maintain the highest level of productivity while working remotely is a big part of what we do; it’s very prevalent in our day-to-day business lives.  What about your industry?

telecommuting-infographic

What are your work habits?  Do you work from home?  If not, do you wish you could – and what would you be willing to trade for that flexibility?

small-square-twittersmall-square-facebooksmall-square-linkedin

A special thanks to Mashable for putting together the infographic.

Our Favorite Google Apps Add-ons for Your Business

We are getting back to our review of our favorite Google Apps add-ons.  Last week, we were a little distracted, by the role big data and data mining played the election.  A couple posts back we discussed our favorite add-ons for Google Mail – this week our focus is on the business apps found in Google Marketplace.

YouCanBook.Me

This app is great for anyone that sets up regularly scheduled appointments, such as accountants, hair stylists, professors or therapists.  It provides you with a dedicated web page that allows your clients, students or colleagues to book appointments directly to your google calendar.  They will be able to view which time slots are available and with a click of the mouse and a few short questions later – their appointment is booked.  The event will appear in your calendar and you will also receive an email alert.

You control the aspects of your bookings:  the start/end of your workday and the appointment length.  You will be given the option of adding a logo to the top of your schedule as well as instructions.  YouCanBook.me can also be embedded in your blog or on your website.

Click here to learn more about YouCanBook.me

RapidTASK

RapidTASK is a powerful tool that makes it easy to collaborate with, and delegates tasks to, your employees and your peers.

Features include the ability to:

  • create unlimited to-do lists for yourself;
  • share lists to let anyone collaborate on a project;
  • delegate tasks to anyone’s email address;
  • track progress with email alerts; and,
  • sync with Google Calendar, Contacts, and Documents.

Click here to learn more about RapidTASK.

TripIt

Have you ever returned from a business trip only to discover that you and a colleague, that works out of a satellite office, were just in the same city, at the same time?  With TripIt groups, your business will allow your employees to see where and when their coworkers are traveling.  It makes it easy to coordinate travel plans, schedule meetings and events, and share rides to and from the airport.

It allows users to collaborate on shared itineraries.  It is also integrated with LinkedIn and Facebook so you can see how your travel plans overlap with the folks in your social networks.

Click here to learn more about TripIt.

What Google Apps add-ons do you think benefit your business the most?  Please share!

To explore all that Google Marketplace has to offer, click here.