CXTech Week 10, News and Analysis

Welcome to the CXTech Week 10 Newsletter. The purpose of this post is to highlight, with commentary, some of the news stories in CXTech this week. What is CXTech?  The C stands for Connectivity, Communications, Collaboration, Conversation, Customer; X for Experience because that’s what matters; and Tech because the focus is enablers.

Examples of what falls into CXTech includes: Programable Telecoms / Communications, CPaaS, UCaaS, CCaaS, open source telecom software, CPaaS enablers, Multi-Factor Authentication / Instant Authentication, Telecom APIs, WebRTC, Cloud Communications, CPaaS enabled services, omni-channel, telecom infrastructure as code, telecom service dashboards, the myriad of UIs making APIs and enablers and services useable beyond coders.

You can read more about why we’re testing out this definition in the following weblogs: TADSummit State of the UnionWhat’s in a Name Part 1 and Part 2 discussions.

I wrap up the newsletter with a section covering, “People, Gossip, Interesting Articles, and Frivolous Stuff.”

You can sign up here to receive the CXTech News and Analysis by email. Please forward this on if you think someone should join the list, I also publish this on my weblog. And please let me know any CXTech news I should include.

In CCaaS, Channel Remains Critical

This article from Sebastian Corriere, CEO and founder of VesuvITas Contact Center Solutions Group, caught my attention as it reflects several conversations I’ve had with enterprise channels this year. The evolution Sebastian’s opinion on Talkdesk is not uncommon.

Let’s face it, when Talkdesk made a 100% uptime Service Level Agreement (SLA), it was certainly attention grabbing. And more importantly its grabbing the attention of the enterprise channels. When looking at the enterprise-focused CXTech companies, channel strategy is a core leg of their business, especially in CCaaS. And the channels are much more available to new providers given the general increase in their competitive environment.

Claiming Cisco will just swat away these flies (by buying Talkdesk) is no longer accurate, as the flies are also the channels given how CPaaS enablers empower them in weeks to become CCaaS providers. You can’t swat away a plague of locusts, a poor analogy, but you get what I mean in the environment is different today than it was the ’80s, ’90s, and ’00s.

UCaaS Magic Quandrant Misses Many Providers

I know they set criteria for inclusion using market share, but the analysis does feel a little US biased. I wonder if Blueface is included in the Star2Star analysis? Their merger was at the start of 2018. I really like the Blueface management console, along with some of the tools they’ve built for dealing with legacy stuff.

Blueface do have a UCaaS offer, through carrier partners. And use the term IP PBX because that’s what enterprise buyers in Europe are looking for, see below, though that is now starting to change. I just struggle with the name Blueface, I keep thinking about someone holding their breadth too long.

CXTech week 10

Telecom Fraud tops $38B – CPaaS to the Rescue!

Telecom fraud has risen to $38 billion dollars a year, it’s estimated that the IRSF (International Revenue Share Fraud) accounted for 16% of that.

TeleSign’s Score uses data attributes from a phone number and assesses the likelihood of fraud. Therefore, if someone is using hundreds of virtual numbers to generate thousands of verification robocalls, TeleSign can stop it, just like the billy goat bested the troll at the end of The Three Billy Goats Gruff (their analogy not mine).

Furthermore, along with the behavioral and machine learning aspect of score, they have the largest database of IRSF and premium rate numbers in the world (50+ million) so are adept at keeping the bad guys out globally, not just in the US.

Beyond fraud management, Score can also be used for a variety of call center use cases. We’ll be investigating this more in TADSummit Americas, see below.

Greenkey Gets Series B Investment

IPC has made a strategic investment in Greenkey, completing their Series B round. Greenkey automates sales and trading workflows by leveraging speech recognition (ASR) and natural language processing (NLP).

GK is the industry leader in converting trading-specific audio and instant messaging into streaming market and customer insights that power downstream decisions. The results are new OTC (Over The Counter) market data feeds, new NLP APIs and the reduction of tedious administrative tasks.

GK were involved in TADHack Chicago and TADHack Paris, giving some great demonstrations of their ASR and NLP technology. Clarify are another company in this space that sponsored TADHack Chicago in 2015. Both have focused on particular bounded problems, to speed the adoption of their technology (survive as small companies).

It’s important to be aware of companies like these, as break-throughs often happen here not in the generalists, and quickly get snapped up into larger companies. And then when the options vest, the team come back on the market. And the cycle repeats.

TADHack–mini Orlando winner Koushik Chatterjee brings hands on end-customer experience to “Proving the value of Business Grade CPaaS” EC19 session

The week after next is Enterprise Connect 2019, the Enterprise Communications event of the year, covering UCaaS, CCaaS, CRM, collaboration, CPaaS, messaging, and much more. One of last year’s TADHack-mini Orlando winners, Koushik Chatterjee, previously CenturyLink now Deloitte, will be on the panel “Proving the value of Business Grade CPaaS”.

It’s great to see the flow of TADHack winners onto the EC19 agenda. With Justin Haefner presenting last year at Enterprise Connect. Their hard-won experiences are essential for implementation success.

TADSummit 2019 plans announced. The CXTech event.

The confirmed TADSummit dates are:

For TADSummit to remain relevant, to help grow the CXTech segment for everyone involved (not just the incumbents, but also the innovators / regional players), we must get deeper into the specifics of regional markets, to the country level in some cases, hence the focus on 3 events.

We’ve also made explicit our policy on diversity, openness, leadership and active participation. We’ve quadrupled the number of female speakers for TADSummit Asia 2019 compared to TADSummit 2018. We’re heading in the right direction, but with much more work to do.

If you’re looking for independent thought leadership in CXTech, TADSummit is hard to beat. And thank you to Wazo, VoIP Innovations, Apidaze, hSenid Mobile and CCPS.org for sponsoring TADSummit in 2019. And our media partners Mind Commerce and The Fast Mode.

Twilio is now an Underrated Stock

InvestorPlace have Twilio in the wrong category, CPaaS is only a piece of their business, CXTech better defines the breadth of their business. But given we’ve only just begun promoting this category, it’s not a surprise 😉 But you know when a technology acronym is reaching its peak when the financial analysts start using it.

Bandwidth beats Estimates

Bandwidith falls more squarely into the CPaaS category than Twilio. Its Q4 2018 revenue of $52.34 million for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $49.37 million.

UCaaS in retail market valued at USD 3487 million in 2018, and is expected to reach USD 13507 million by 2023

Ignoring the unrounded numbers (I even deleted a digit after the decimal point). This market size in retail for UCaaS surprised me. I’d not seen retail over indexing compared to other verticals. UCaaS has seen success where high cost employee collaboration is critical to business performance and the businesses do not have much of a legacy phone problem. While the focus of retail has been more omni-channel CRM, click to call, chat, and better customer data systems integration to avoid customers’ repeating the same information. I’m going to do more digging on this one, to determine if I’m missing a trick on where UCaaS is seeing traction.

People, Gossip, Interesting Articles, and Frivolous Stuff

Matt Loreille (a really nice guy) who headed up marketing with one of the original CPaaS / SDP companies called jNetx. Before the term CPaaS existed, there was SDP (Service Delivery Platform). jNetx was bought by Amdocs in 2009 for $50M. He’s now with Wildmoka that focuses on making live video editing and posting on social media easy. I can see how we’d use them at both TADHack and TADSummit.

LEGO are now offering their version of a bendy phone. The LEGO fold. Its nice to see others think phone marketing has all gone a little silly. I wonder if the LEGO fold will have the problem the Samsung fold recently announced. Given my extensive LEGO experience with my son, as long as you’ve bought genuine LEGO parts, you should be OK :)

This is sort of tangential to CXTech, but generated quite a few comments of support when I published on Linkedin: A 5 Step History from Big Data to AI.

  • Step 1) Let’s make a vast data lake and pay Oracle / Microsoft / etc. lots of $$$.
  • Step 2) Data scientists will shake their statistics voodoo stick at the data lake and magical insights will emerge to make our lives better. Oracle / Microsoft / etc. license renewals continue.
  • Step 3) Damn! The data’s a mess. Damn! Data scientists are human. Damn! Were’s the ROI? Oracle / Microsoft / etc. license renewals continue.
  • Step 4) AI to the rescue! If data scientists can not deliver the insights we need, machine learning software we do not understand will do a better job. Oracle / Microsoft / etc. license renewals continue.
  • Step 5) Damn!

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