• United States
by Steve Taylor and Larry Hettick

The best part about VoiceCon

Mar 15, 20042 mins

* The best part of VoiceCon was the participants

We recently had the chance to participate in the VoiceCon conference and exhibition in Orlando. Today, we would like to award our unofficial “best in show” and make a few observations.

We’d like to give our best-in-show award to the conference attendees.

That’s right, we thought the coolest thing about this show was the participants. Not to suggest that there weren’t some interesting announcements and cool demos, but we think the level of interest and engagement was superb. While being in Orlando did help out a bit, we noticed a few changes from the decreased participation many industry trade shows have suffered from in the past two or three years.

First, participants were serious about the topics. Standing-room-only crowds attended keynotes and breakout sessions alike; exhibits had lines queued to speak to the vendor representatives. We saw more suits than “business casual” attire – and the attitudes of conferees reflected the unofficial and unannounced change in the dress code.

Second, the “hallway conversation” was visibly intense and focusing on the topics at hand. Seems businesses are actually beginning to take this IP telephony stuff to heart.

Third, the usual questions about quality of service (QoS) and security were not so much about, “Well, I heard VoIP can’t give good QoS.” Rather, discussions were more sophisticated, with a focus on how to engineer QoS and security into network designs.

In our sessions on VoIP applications and integration, the audiences “got it” that VoIP isn’t just about cheaper telephony; it is an enabling technology to improve employee productivity and customer service.

Seems folks are getting serious about buying this convergence stuff. We applaud the trend. We believe that convergence is helping the technology sector move up from the past years’ downward spiral, and most of all we applaud the VoiceCon participants for giving us proof that the sector telecomm may have really turned the corner.