For some Carrier Neutral are dirty words

A carrier neutral data center is standard requirements for many and they don't look at a facility unless it is carrier neutral.

What Is A Cloud And Carrier-Neutral Data Centre?

A truly neutral data centre provider is one that is independent of the companies colocating in the data centre, does not compete with them in any way, and offers no packaged services as part of colocation. Customers are free to contract directly with the providers of their choice.

If you open your eyes and look at those whose business model is not aligned with carrier neutral, then you may realize carrier neutral is a dirty word that is offensive.  The question you need to ask is do you want to work with those who find "carrier neutral" offensive.  If you do, then you should not make use of the words "carrier neutral." 

I made this realization 6 months ago, and it has allowed me to look at new business opportunities.  In Japan on vacation it even helped me see something that was right in front of me for years. NTT, KDDI, Softbank are the major carriers fiercely competing.

As the iPhone sweeps Japan’s smartphone market, NTT Docomo has shifted the competitive focus to calling plans with its new unlimited-talk arrangement. Meanwhile, pending changes in telecommunications regulations promise either to strengthen the position of the former NTT monopoly or to blow the mobile market wide open. Ishikawa Tsutsumu reports.

Since Japan’s leading mobile operator NTT Docomo joined its two major competitors in offering the iPhone last September, the nation’s mobile phone market has fallen into a state of virtual homogeneity, with little to distinguish the three main carriers in terms of handsets or services. This has set the stage for the kind of price war that all the providers are anxious to avoid.
Playing “Chicken” with Cash-Back Offers

According to data compiled by market research company Kantar Japan, iPhones accounted for 68.7% of smartphones sold between November 2013 and January 2014. With Docomo, KDDI (which offers mobile service under the Au brand), and SoftBank all offering the dominant iPhone along with Android handsets, customers were no longer choosing a mobile carrier on the basis of its lineup of devices.

If you dig deeper one of these companies would not only find carrier neutral offensive there are others in positions of influence who would also be offended.

Being offensive does work when you are among like minded people.  Below is George Carlin's infamous 7 dirty words skit.  It is funny to many and there is another group who find this offensive.

Qualcomm's Future Data Center Efforts built on Mobile

Barron's had reported on Qualcomm's announcing its data center effort in its latest analyst call.

Perhaps the most interesting and surprising part of Mollenkopf’s presentation was his discussion of how the company is finally entering the server market, riding the wave of implementations of new kinds of data centers, where entities such as Google (GOOGL) build their own servers. That should bring Qualcomm into direct competition with server-chip Titan Intel (INTC).

Said Mollenkopf, the kinds of requirements that have nurtured the architecture of mobile device semiconductors is becoming more and more relevant to the way server chips must be designed. “The high end of the smartphone and the tablet really are starting to merge with what would be feasible in the data center.”

In addition to the architecture of mobile coming to servers, Mollenkopf sees an advantage in servers in the fact that the company can get its chips made in the most advanced semiconductor processes. “Our ability to go to the leading node puts us in a unique position.”

“It will take us awhile to build this business, but we think it’s an interesting business.”

And the rest of the tech media referenced this post and one image.  Turns out there are 4 slides from the investor meeting. Let's start with one way far at the end slide #76 that shows where data centers are in other initiatives at Qualcomm for future growth.

As Dileep Bhandarkar presented in August 2014 on his life from Mainframe to Mobile, there is a movement from below to disrupt the data center industry.

Here is another slide from the investor review that shows Qualcomm's plan to come from its strength of high volume smartphones and move into mobile computing and data centers.

In this slide Qualcomm identifies the markets it sees for ARM - The cloud era and software defined data center.

And the last slide.  Well this isn't actually the last slide.  It is the 2nd slide in the deck that mentions "data center", but so many times I find the order in what gets presented misses the opportunity to tell the story.

This slide explains the vision of an integrated cloud.  It does make sense that an ARM mobile environment could support the development of an ARM server cloud environment.

There are some of you who are going to blow this off as just another anti-Intel (x86) initiative.

Here is something to think about.  What Qualcomm is explaining as the integrated cloud is being built by Google, Apple, Microsoft, Amazon, and Samsung.

iCloud connects you and your Apple devices in amazing ways. It makes sure you always have the latest versions of your most important things — like documents, apps, notes, and contacts — on whatever device you are using. It lets you easily share photos, calendars, locations, and more with friends and family. It even helps you find your device if you lose it. And iCloud does it all automatically. Just like that.

Using Talko, A Review by Two Technical Guys

Talko shipped on Tuesday Sept 23 and the first person I connected with is David D’Souza.  David shares a tweet with another friend using Talko.


friend's reaction to talko: it's weird talking to my phone

So what is Talko?  To some it is just iMessage copied.

Talko looks like a solution to the problem that iOS 8's Messages has already solved

Oh dear. On Tuesday, software giant Ray Ozzie launched Talko, an app that promises to “save the telephone call”—and basically copies Apple’s iOS 8 Messages feature in the process.

David D’Souza and I used Talko on Tues Sept 23, discussing the usefulness of the app.  David and I are both ex-Microsoftees and got to know each other during the Win95 days.  So we are of old guys who now focus on mobile and cloud now leaving behind the days of Desktop OS far in the past.  OMG, Win95 is going to be 20 years old next year.  David has an iPhone 6 Plus with 64 GB.  I have a iPhone 6 with 128 GB.  Talko is iOS only, but Android is the future. 

We both made the comment that Talko does what iMessage does, but given it is a Ray Ozzie project it is going to have Lotus Notes type of collaboration which is why there is the idea of teams.  Gigaom’s Barb Darrow highlights the notes and offline feature.

And — this is important — if there is no connectivity, you can still record whatever you need to say for later playback. “As you can imagine from my history, it’s important to have offline capability,” Ozzie said in a recent interview at Talko’s Boston office. One of Lotus Notes’ selling points was that users could work offline and then sync their changes to the workgroup mothership when connectivity was re-established.

The user experience is a bit awkward.  I accidentally hit the voice feature.  Switching between voice and typing can be hard.  We spent most of the time typing and discussed those users who don’t like to type.  What, there are users who don’t like to type?  Yes.  And these are the same people who liked the push to talk feature.  We discussed this user scenario in more detail as I focus on the enterprise market with another business.  Sorry not telling you the specifics on the users as it is too valuable to just throw out there.

One of the premium features to be sold is the long term record of discussions.  I mentioned some users I know like using voice because it supports future discussions of my word vs. their word and there is no permanent record.  If there is a permanent record then people could get stuck in my word vs. their word discussions.  Notice how few phone calls are recorded, and the few times phone calls are recorded are during discussions with financial institutions.

Ray Ozzie is most likely skipping the short term viral strategy getting millions of users and sell for a billion or two.  He is taking lessons learned from Lotus Notes, making mobile and cloud the platform, adding voice as a big feature, collaboration for teams.

Can you imagine what Ray would have had to do in the past to launch his service?  Now he can build on AWS and Azure.

As Ozzie has said in his few public comments to date about Talko, the availability of capable, inexpensive cloud services, open-source software and ever-smarter smartphones has enabled the creation of very rich services like this. Startups no longer have to sweat the plumbing whereas a decade ago new companies spent most of their seed capital buying pricey servers and commercial software just to get down the chute.

Next step is to try and use Talko with the family and see what they say.  David D’Souza and I are not fair representation of typical users. :-)

Jacket for your iPhone 6 Plus or Samsung Galaxy Note 3/4, Arc'Teryx Gamma Jacket

I have an iPhone 6 (well it is on the Fedex truck now) and a Galaxy Note 3.  As fall weather arrives in Seattle, wearing  light weight jacket is the daily routine.  What jacket works?  Being able to quickly reach the phone for either left or right handed is nice.  Must be zippered pocket as accidental drops are too often disastrous from chest height.  

The jacket I have found that works well is the Arc’Teryx Gamma Jacket.  It has two chest pockets.  Both big enough for an iPhone 6 Plus or Galaxy Note.  You can put the phone in either pocket if you are left or right handed.  I often carry both the iPhone and Galaxy Note.  Why? Because I work on mobile solutions and each has its strengths.


REI customers give it 5 out of 5 stars.

I use this jacket al the time when skiing.  The shoulder pocket is convenient for the RFID ticket card which if you place in the same pocket as your phone almost never works.

With the popularity of the iPhone 6 Plus more and more people are going to be looking for what pocket to put their phone in.  I like having the phone at chest height.  Seems better ergonomically.  May not be the most fashion conscious way to carry a device, but given how ofter you are using the phone I vote for ergonomics vs. looks.  Guess that is what makes me an engineer. :-)

I picked iPhone 6, my friend picked 6 Plus, Why?

A data center friend who is a loyal iPhone user and I both ordered iPhone 6s on Sept 12.  We were both going to order iPhone 6 regular, but then he decided to order the Plus.  I stuck with the Regular.  I tried logging on to the order websites at Apple and AT&T at 12:01a on Sept 12.  After 15 minutes of trying I gave up and went to sleep.  My friend stayed online and finally got his order in at 2:30a.  I was asleep.  :-)  Got up at 6a, tried ordering from Apple site. Got frustrated and went to AT&T.  

We both ordered 128GB models.  Why?  Because pushing GB of data on wireless to devices takes time.  So, we both said let’s treat the iPhone 6 as a storage device.  Besides with a 10GB data plan you can easily go through the data use quickly.  As one of my friends said he knows of someone whose daughter gradually pushed the data plan spend to $2,000 a month as she watched Netflix anywhere she wanted.  Dude, disable the use of cel data by Netflix.  I did.

My friend ordered the Plus when he realized his huge protective case for his iPhone 5 made it just as big as a Plus, and he figured why not give it a try.  Worse case he returns it or sells it.  He ordered at 2:30a and still has to wait 3-4 weeks.

I ordered a iPhone 6 regular.  Why?  I have been a user of Galaxy Note since 1, and have a 3.  So I am used to having 1920x1280 display.  I carry my iPhone with me all the time.  The Galaxy Note 3 is more like my work device.  Having a Phablet for 3 years I know what it is like to have a phone that people make fun of because it is too big.  Now that the iPhone 6 Plus is coming out, Samsung has chosen to say how it is being copied.