Google Apps Fail During Cisco Keynote Announcing Google Partnership? (Not that simple)

Correction/Clarification: Had a quick conversation with Peder Ulander, VP of Marketing for Collaboration at Cisco, and appreciate his clarification on what happened: The presentation was created in Google Presentation, then converted to Microsoft PowerPoint (conference requirement) and moved to conference production PC which did not have the required font which caused the simple font failure. I’ve decided to post the correction in favor of just deleting the article and I’ll markup the changes I make in the below so you can still see before/after correction article. I’ve also changed the article title by adding “? (Not that simple)” at the end. So, it boils down to: Simple font fail + brilliant example of presentation failure recovery. So now the original article with corrections:

Cisco’s Rowan Trollope had a great keynote and some very good products to demo during the Enterprise Connect 2014 Keynote today. (which I plan to write about and comment on in a bit.) Till I get time to do that I had to chuckle just a little at Rowan Trollope’s brilliant recovery on a Google Powerpoint presentation failure during, irony of ironies, a presentation announcing a Google partnership. He is even manages to let Microsoft PowerPoint be the fall man, with a super well placed one liner! (Rowan, I’m taking lessons! ) Enjoy:

Around 7 minutes into the keynote a slide comes up with garbled fonts. Trollope responds without a skip: “Looks like we have some interesting words on the slide there. I think that means there is a font problem. [nervous laugh] PowerPoint? Is there anyone from Microsoft here? [laughter] Maybe I should have put this in Google presentations. I’m not sure, anyways. [laughter, applause] I can’t blame them, I’m just kidding.” (@ ~7:30)


Zoomed in Google Presentation font fail:


Just a few minutes later an even more pronounced font failure is nicely covered by what has to be the world’s slickest presentation snafu recovery.  A slide where the main word is obviously garbled comes up.[Trollope, turns to the audience] “This is a test,What does that say? See, so I come from the security industry…so we have some code going on here…” 11:00 (speakers, this is how to turn lemons into lemon juice like a boss!)


But noting that Google Apps was used is a point of the keynote speech and so is inevitable. At about minute 27: “We used Google Apps to build this entire presentation and all the speaker notes. So we use that technology with our own technology. Working together…” 27:00 (Correction/Clarification: While Google Presentation was used to build the presentation, Peder Ulander notes PowerPoint was used to present)

“…We used Google Apps to build this entire presentation…”


If Trollope can pull this off, watch out collaboration industry! Seriously, Cisco did have some very interesting gear to talk about and I’ll try to cover that a.s.a.p. Kudos Rowan, I’m scribbling presentation tips as fast as I can!

If you want to watch the excellent keynote, here:

Or on cisco site:

First Sighting: snom 7EM 7xx Series Expansion Module

snom showed the snom 7EM for the first time at CEBIT 2014.

Photo posted by snom click here. In this picture we can see “Tile View” and USB connector plugged into the side of the snom 715.


Better Photo via


Another Photo by

“The modules extensions for snom 715, 720 and 760 presented at Cebit. Up to 3 modules positions, USB connection”

Shows that buttons can be assigned any of snom’s functions (contact search, contact list, etc), USB connection and backlit LCD.


Details from twitter photos and snom blogs:

  • has a range of buttons (“…large number of self-labeling keys…” click here)
  • 18 buttons, (9 per side) photo above  (compared to older snom Vision’s 8 buttons on a side plus 2 buttons buttons at the bottom)
  • automatic button labeling
  • Tile or Line View shows Contact Name full width or 2 Line format click here
  • displays contacts & call status
  • USB connection to snom phones 715,720 & 760.
  • I think it can be presumed the tilt can match snom 7xx devices
  • Up to 3 7EM’s can be “daisy chained” with USB click here
  • will work with the $139USD MSRP snom 715 (see recent review), 720, and 760
  • No ETA given



Considering this unit works with the new snom 715 (not Lync Qualified as of this posting), this will likely be the lowest cost “console” setup available for Lync at this time.

First Impression Review of Polycom VVX Color Expansion Module


Below are my observations on the Polycom VVX Color Expansion module and Microsoft Lync.

Here is a photo slideshow of the device: (or click here)

Pro’s & Cons List


  • a lot of buttons in a compact unit
  • very easily add button by adding Lync Contacts to Favorites using the Lync Client
  • hardware fit and finish is superb
  • Physical and configuration Setup is extremely simple


  • no control over contact to button mapping/placement
  • button labels on VVX phone screen overwritten by Transfer screen



The VVX Color Expansion is very well done hardware. The 28 x 3 is a lot of buttons in a compact unit. The one thing some attendants may struggle with is the current rigid placing of contacts (alphabetical order only) and the contact labels on the VVX phone screen getting hidden by “transfer screen”.  Overall a very nice piece of hardware and I expect this device to be a hit.

New USB Lync Handset: Jabra DIAL 550 MS



Just noticed that Jabra has a new Lync Optimized USB handset device (similar to Plantronics Calisto 240 (P240-M)

Matt Landis’ Enterprise Connect 2014 Notes #enterprisecon


I’m not attending Enterprise Connect (March 17-20, 2014) in person, but I will be watching for Lync developments as a “remote worker” (of course!) and will scribble them on this blog article.

EC14 Posted Videos:
EC14 Photos:

Lync News

image image image
Cisco: Committed to Jabber / Lync Federation Working click here Sennheiser unveils compact speaker click here Tim Greene says: Lync Surging as PBX Choice in North America click here
image image image
Konftel 55 Firmware being tweaked to be Lync Compatible (Not Lync Qualified) click here Tech details click here snom Promotes Native Lync Managed IP Endpoints: Press release: click here
snom page: click here
Pexip Native Lync & Office 365 Integration click here
image image image
Plantronics Voyager Edge: Charge on go, NFC pairing, audio caller alert, more: 
click here
Acano was wowing attendees with Anyone joining Lync video conferences click here Audiocodes demos Better Together over Ethernet at booth click here


Other UC News

image image image
Cisco Keynote: SX-10 and Speaker 60, Google Parntership click here

#SpeakerTip: How to recover from a Presentation Snafu like a boss: click here

Cisco SX-10: POE, Easy pairing with Mobile phone  click here
Alcatel-Lucent new Green IP Endpoint: click here    

PreConference Lync Announcements

RedSky's E911 Anywhere Cloud Service V.6.3.5 brings a new level of E911 support to Microsoft Lync soft clients. E911 Anywhere can now "read" the PIDF-LO location object sent by the Lync soft client and route a 9-1-1 call based on the PIDF-LO. Compliant with i3 NG9-1-1 standards, an industry first.

SMART Technologies Inc. a leading collaboration company and global provider of interactive displays, announces several new additions to the SMART Room System for Microsoft Lync including greater interactive sharing with enhancedtouch and inking capabilities, unbound workspace, the largest display range and more support for implementation, ROI reporting and adoption.

ProtonMedia announces it will integrate with Microsoft Office Online in its latest version of ProtoSphere, a 3D virtual collaboration environment built on Lync and SharePoint.

Unimax will showcase its Lync Voice management toolset that includes massive capabilities for Lync Number Management and Lync migrations. Unimax will also demonstrate tools for single and multi-vendor end-to-end UC management and migrations including automated provisioning, employee self service and help desk capabilities for MACDs (i.e. voicemail password resets).

Damaka showcases Universal UCC, an Amadeo UCC solution that is cross-platform, uses existing legacy H.323 hardware & PBX/PSTN, and connects to WebEx, Lync, & Sametime meetings. Damaka's SDKs enable in-app iOS/Android integration of Amadeo, Lync, Jabber, WebEx, Tandberg/Polycom, and Sametime. Visit us at Booth 1139.


Lync 2013 CU March 2014 Update Details



  • Memory leak occurs during a video call or when you rest the mouse pointer on a video icon in Lync 2013


Matt Landis’ CEBIT 2014 Notes #cebit2014


I’m not at CEBIT but I will be watching for Lync developments as a “remote worker” (of course!) and will scribble them on this blog article.

snom 7EM Shown: 7xx series Expansion Module

Source: click here or click here (below photo source: click here)


Photo posted by snom click here. In this picture with can see “Tile View” and USB connect plugged into the side of the snom 715.


Better Photo via


Another Photo by

“The modules extensions for snom 715, 720 and 760 presented at Cebit. Up to 3 modules positions, USB connection”

Shows that buttons can be assigned any of snom’s functions (contact search, contact list, etc), USB connection and backlit LCD.


Summary of above photos:

  • has a range of buttons (“…large number of self-labeling keys…” click here)
  • 18 buttons, (9 per side)
  • automatic button labeling
  • Tile or Line View shows Contact Name full width or 2 Line format click here
  • displays contacts & call status
  • USB connection to snom phones
  • will work with the $139USD MSRP snom 715 (see recent review), 720, and 760


Ferrari Electronics is Showing New Fax2Lync Lync Plugin

Looks like @Ferrari_el Is Demoing a Fax2Lync Lync Client Plugin click here


Blync Busy Light First Impression Review

Here is my initial experience with Blync busylight:

Install quite simple: unzip .msi, run and click next 3 times.


If you try to run the tray config app before everything is happy (I had the unit plugged in, but it took a bit till everything initialized) you will get the following informative message as it did:


After installation you will have a tray app


The configuration screen


Lights seem to have 4 colors:



Bottom 3 rubber feet and standard USB cable




Designed in Australia, Made in China


Blync busy light is made in China like just about everything in its price range. What does this mean for build quality? @kevinwbird and others have noted that Blync has done some hardware revisions over the past few months that have improved areas such as USB mount.


Software Development Kit (SDK) click here


See Blync UCWA Remote Presence tool demo’d at LyncConf14


  • Nice big, bright indication
  • Incoming Call and Incoming IM indicator is great
  • Blync has a software SDK for 3rd party developers click here
  • Blync UCWA powered remote Presence application click here
  • Installer is .MSI for nice mass deploy
  • standard USB cable so it can be replaced


  • No ringer/audio alert 
  • My unit has something that feels loose/rattles inside (apparently mine only)
  • sometimes slow to go from InCall/Ringing blink light back to green (as seen in video)


BLync brings very visible presence indication and “on call” status to those who enter a workspace and at the same time alerts the Lync user to incoming phone and IM calls. Blync, in my opinion, is a nice and professional looking design aesthetically and for only $39USD you can hardly go wrong in ROI in making Lync users even more productive.

Video of What’s New in Windows 8.1 April 2014 Update


Below is my very quick update on what’s new in the next (April 2014) Windows 8.1 Update:

Microsoft continues to improve Metro/Modern vs desktop experience

  • Metro apps have a title bar, with close/minimize buttons and the ability to “Split left/right” when you right-click it.
  • You can keep taskbar visible while using modern apps
  • Control Panel item in metro PC Settings
    200% and 250% DPI scaling modes added to control panel (in 8.1 RTM, to get these values you have to go “custom”), 250% is the default on screens with more than 1800 vertical lines
  • Shutdown button on the start screen*, doesn’t show on less than 8″ tablets to prevent accidental shutdown
  • Search button on the start screen*
  • Instead of metro bars (top and bottom) a context menu appears when you right-click an app on the start screen*
  • Pinning metro apps to desktop taskbar*
    Internet Explorer Enterprise Mode

snom UC Edition Demo’s Coming Features: Meeting Join, Roster, & User Photos


snom UC Edition demo’s BTOE, Meeting Join w/Roster, 802.1x, user Photos. Scheduled for Q2 2014

An Update on Audiocodes 440HD, 430HD, 420HD Lync Phone Series


Audiocodes has been working at the Lync firmware for their new 4xxHD Series of IP phones. In September 2013 the entry level 420HD phone achieved Lync Qualified status. (see my review here)

I was interested to see the progress Audiocodes was making on their Lync line up, especially the high end 440HD model (which sports a unique button plus LCD arrangement) and their Better Together over Ethernet functionality. Recently at Lync Conference 2014 Alan Percy and Ran Inbar gave me a short tour of what Audiocodes has in store for the future.

Below is video demo with Audiocodes CTO Ran Inbar:

I suggest to click close caption for better text

Audiocodes Better Together over IP

Audiocodes implementation of BToE will not require the controlling PC to be physically plugged into the Audiocodes 4xxHD phones’ switch. (snom UC Editon does not either, Polycom VVX does) It was noted that the IP phone will generate a unique Pin code that will be used initially to pair the phone and PC.


BToE on Audiocodes is slated to support

  • sign-in assist
  • call control like click-to-dial, hangup, hold, etc

Will not support video calls with phone providing audio portion of call.

Audiocodes 440HD Desi-Less Lync Contact Buttons

The clever DESI-less buttons on the 440HD will be assigned by adding a Lync contact to a Lync contact list. It was indicated to me that the contacts will be listed in alphabetical order like in the Lync client itself. If a user sets up a user definable button from the 440HD phone itself, the button will be added to the Lync client contact list as well.


As you can see in the photo above the buttons are tri-color LED (red, green, blue) lit and correspond roughly to Lync presence colors. The mono LCD is backlit and at this time seems to show the contact name.

Other Items

In a move that is not common with other vendors, Audiocodes plans to have white and black versions of the Audiocodes 4xxHD to accommodate different scenarios.

(Below you can see that the white version means that BLF button light up as a whole compared to black version)


It appears that there will be two different SKU fors the Audiocodes 4XXHD series:

  • UC420HD / UC430HD / UC440HD will be preloaded with Lync Firmware
  • IP420HD / IP430HD / IP440HD will be preloaded with SIP Firmware

Other options will be white/black or power supply/non.


Other Links:
My Review of Audiocode UC420HD (Lync Features) click here

snom 715 First Impression Review: Gigabit & USB Added


The new snom 715 is an enhanced version of the snom 710 so if you have seen the 710 you are already quite familiar with the 715.  The 715 brings several new features/enhancements: gigabit network switch, USB peripheral/add-on interface and RTAudio wideband to an IP handset set at $139MSRP.


snom 715

snom 710

GB switch




RT Audio Wideband



A video review of the 710 below (NOTE: be aware of differences noted above!)

A comparison of the side mounted USB port


Close up of USB port (which is mounted on the side like one of the snom 760 USB ports as opposed to near the Ethernet ports like the snom 720—apparently the side mounted USB is the future)

The blue tooth port can be used for WLAN or Bluetooth headset connectivity. (I did not test)


I could see no different in the appearance of the Gigabit switch on the 715 and the 10/100 switch on the 710. (There are no indicator lights on either—which some people see as a enhancement since on some older snom models they had indicators which in dimly light office shown down on the desk)


The screen resolution (same as 710 and 720)


Some observations

  • The LED’s are much more brilliant on the 715 than the 710 (at least on hardware I have)
  • The snom 715 (as all snom models) does not include power cord


  • Well built, low cost device (lowest cost Gigabit Lync phone at $139MSRP, compared to Audiocodes 420HD at $149 and Aastra 6721i)
  • snom UC Edition: very full featured Lync firmware stack: click here (FW not available at this time)
  • 5 dedicated definable buttons


  • If you need things like more than 4 accounts/identities, tri-color Lync Presence indicating buttons or more user definable buttons you may want to look at the snom 720/760
  • DESI labels may be a bit tricky to print?

Note: Qualification/Firmware Status of snom 715 as of 3/3/2015

  • Not currently listed as a Lync Qualified device: click here
  • Currently no UC Edition firmware list on snom website: click here

While the snom 715 does not currently have Lync firmware released, it looks set to bring a sizable feature list, Gigabit switch performance and current and future peripheral connectivity via the new USB port to the low end of Lync capable IP Phones. It also looks set to become the lowest cost device while bringing 5 user definable buttons.


715 webpage click here
715 Datasheet click here
715 Docs: click here