CXTech Week 7 2020, News and Analysis

The purpose of this CXTech Week 7 2020 newsletter 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.

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Carriers broke law disclosing customer location data, FCC says

An interesting scandal from the US carriers selling location data. But to bail bonds people? Come on carriers be nice to your customers.

Carriers need to focus on selling services, like trust ratings, where their customers’ data never leaves the carrier and their customers are protected across their online transactions. I consider this a prime example of the mis-focus on APIs rather than services.

We’ve covered such trust and authentication solutions from Telesign at TADSummit Americas 2019.

Sangoma Announces the 17th Annual AstriCon Expo & Conference

Sangoma, the world’s largest provider of open source communications solutions, Asterisk and FreePBX, is now accepting submissions for speaker topic and talk concepts for 2020. Speaking abstracts must be submitted for consideration by May 4, 2020. Abstracts can be submitted at this link.

AstriCon contains multiple tracks with more than 45 sessions, offering attendees a variety of options during the three-day event. Topics include security, tutorials, case studies, and growing your business with open source. In addition, WebRTC, speech technology, and how to build scalable and resilient solutions, IoT and other related open source projects such as Kamailio, Homer, and OpenSIPS will be covered.

Two new additions this year are the co-location of TADSummit Americas (website coming soon) and FreePBX World. TADSummit is the leading independent event where leaders in the programmable telecoms/communications (CXTech) meet to share experiences and insights. FreePBX World will be focused on the FreePBX roadmap and community.

This will be our second TADSummit Americas. We’re excited to be part of Astricon, the leading open source programmable telecoms project.

After giving the 2019 keynote at Astricon, I was impressed by the diversity and practical focus of the community. From end customers, through the variety of channels, service and API providers, to the ‘high-priests’ of open source; its a diverse, can-not-miss event in programmable communications.

My hope with collocating TADSummit Americas with Astricon is to create a no-BS destination for everyone involved in programmable communications / CXTech across the Americas.

TADHack-mini Orlando

After TADHack-mini Phoenix, our focus is now TADHack-mini Orlando, made possible by Apidaze, Asterisk, Inference Solutions, Intelepeer, Sangoma, and Simwood. Bots (intelligent agents) played a critical role in Phoenix. And in Orlando we also have a focus on intelligent agents / assistants (also known as bots) using conversational interfaces.

We have the support of renowned expert Dan Miller, Opus Research. Who will be joining us for the judging on Sunday, and supporting us in the run-up to the event.

Intelepeer are a sponsor of TADHack, they have a good case study on using programmable telecoms with Real Estate. And a nice intro to CPaaS video below.

TADHack Orlando

No Jitter Roll: TADHack-mini Winners

Thank you Ryan Daily for covering us in your weekly post. TADHack-mini Phoenix ran on the 1st and 2nd February, just before Avaya ENGAGE. You can read more on the TADHack weblog.

What? It’s a hackathon about using the Avaya and Google dialogflow resources to solve problems in Education, Healthcare, Energy / Environment, and St. Mary’s Food Bank (Phoenix based charity).

Who? Anyone who’s interested, web dev skills will help.

Why? To showcase the power of Avaya OneCloud CPaaS and Google’s Dialogflow, network with great people, and possibly win some of the $15k in prizes plus other goodies (excellent stickers from Github, t-shirts from Avaya, access to the Avaya welcome party and Avaya ENGAGE).

Twilio wraps up a great 2019, but again its outlook disappoints Analysts

For the fourth quarter of the year, Twilio’s revenues grew 62% to $331.2 million, ahead of the market’s forecast of $315 million.

For the full year 2019, revenue was up 75% to $1.13 billion with $177 million coming from SendGrid since its acquisition in February 2019.

Among key metrics, its Q4 base revenues grew 65% over the year to $306.6 million and full year base revenue grew 79% to $1.06 billion.

For the first quarter, Twilio forecast revenue of $335-$338 million at a growth of 44%-45% and a loss of $22 to $25 million. Non-GAAP loss per share is expected to be $0.11 to $0.09.

While the revenue outlook was in line with analyst estimates of $326.7 million for Q1 and $1.46 billion for 2020, analysts were expecting slight profitability of $0.03 per share for the first quarter and $0.23 per share for fiscal 2020.

The lower profitability comes from increased investment to flesh out its complete enterprise communications offer. I’ve covered many times why labelling it as CPaaS is incorrect.

And some good advice from another analyst, “Even though Twilio is terrific, evidence shows it’s difficult to beat the S&P500 by investing in widely followed richly-priced popular names.”

RingCentral and Zoom’s Stock Pop

RingCentral stock is up 29.6% in 2020 and up a whopping 111% for the one year. Similarly Zoom is up 31.8% this year. Given covid19 and events being cancelled, expect to see Zoom report results ahead of expectations.

People, Gossip, and Frivolous Stuff

Congratulation to Martina Saric who is not an IT Sourcing Manager at Magenta Telekom in Austria. She’s been leading service innovation for close to one decade in Telekom.

Well done Richard Appleton who is now Business Development Manager at TrellisWorks Ltd. I’ve known him for over 20 years, since his Lucent days.

Kostiantyn Bigus is now Co-Founder, CEO at PetSensus.

Jeremy Perlman is now Vice President, EMEA Sales at DataStax. He was previously with Apigee, Chet Kapoor was CEO of Apigee, and is now CEO of DataStax.

Scott Johnson is now Telecom Industry Practice Lead at Adobe. I’ve know Scott since his AT&T days.

Remote as a way of Working. Running a fully distributed remote organization. By Jean Deruelle, Telestax.

Jean has been AWOL for a while, it’s nice to see him emerging into the public eye again. Though he’s still ignoring me on Skype 😉 Telestax has been a fully distributed remote organization from the get-go.

I’ve been working remote for 20+ years; I work with remote, hybrid, multi-site, small, medium, large, and global organizations.

For people learning the business, and office helps them learn all the ropes, from admin through sales, marketing, and development. Remote can work for those with more experience, where the focus is principally delivery.

But it depends on the person, their stage in life, where they live, even if they have an office space at home. Many people struggle with the issues you raise, loneliness, maintaining focus, even excessive snacking.

Investors remain nervous about distributed teams.

There is no definitive answer to this question. The trend is towards remote working to attract the best talent. When that talent must work as part of a team, it also depends on the team. Sometimes hybrid can be the worst of both worlds, sometimes not.

Once you remote work, and it works for you, you can never go back.

All-remote, decentralized can work for particular types of businesses in the early stages, but as they grow quite often a physical core becomes necessary, whether that core be around development or the exec team.