Resolve to Keep Your Customers Happy in 2016

Omni-Channel Customer Engagement, Omni-Channel, omnichannel, omni channel, customer engagement, self service, multichannel, mobile customer care

PREVIOUSLY PUBLISHED TO TMCNET’S OMNI-CHANNEL CUSTOMER ENGAGEMENT

As productivity literally falls into our hands, and technologies allow for better integration of our most precious business tools, cloud contact centers are working hard to plan their roadmap for 2016. While some of us have been working diligently through the holiday season, many of are returning to the control boards for the first time since last year!

As we enter 2016, many of us are ambitious and excited about what is rumored to come. We have set goals through resolutions of things we are inspired to achieve – and we will. Aspect (NewsAlert), a developer of omni-channel customer engagement solutions, did their homework. And, they offer us a list of 6 common denominators for contact center resolutions in the New Year:

Reinvent “Cool.” + Become More Available = Enhance the Customer Experience.

These three resolutions play a major part in the potential of one another. In fact, becoming more available on mobile and through social media, the customer experience will be enhanced, improved and more gratifying to the brand enthusiasts.

We are living amongst millennials – those young professionals who never sleep and hate living within the confines of tradition and “normalcy.” For them, it is normal to pick up a phone at 3 a.m. and call customer service. But, customer service isn’t usually available past 8 p.m. on a regular business day. Allowing customers to connect to work-at-home individuals at these hours, however, is not just cool – But, man, is it convenient!

Cloud contact centers are resolving to become part of the conversation. They are building their “cred” in social media, while adjusting to the needs of their most valued customers – even acquiring a few strays in the process. In 2016, if you aren’t listening to your customers, you’re already #failing!

Instill Confidence.

Build brand advocates. Brands that include do-it-yourself tutorials, troubleshooting tips, videos, easy-to-read user manuals and customer portals for live group discussion will notice an uptick in the way their brands are consumed by those who matter most.

Take Apple (NewsAlert) for example. Each new MacBook Pro comes with paperwork that the average customer would never read. This material breaks down care and handling of the new device. It also includes installations with picture and diagram, highlight with easy-to-read directions.

Users can find their way to a support page and be addressed by a customer service agent directly, or can find additional help by brand enthusiasts sharing similar experiences of the past. Thanks to search engines, these tips can be “Google’ (NewsAlert)d” and brand loyalty continues.

Apple finds that many loyalists have created their own help forums in dedication to the brand, often selling Apple products, as a third-party carrier. On the other hand, for a subscription fee or onetime payment in store, customers can be serviced over the phone or at a live store.

Apple has instilled the “do-it-yourself” mentality by allowing consumers to learn their products inside out and provide tips to better maintenance and repair of their complex machinery.

Because consumers feel they know their product, they are most likely to accessorize, tell a friend how “easy” a product is to use and how they should be using that brand, while upgrading their products and purchasing surplus repair parts – directly from the brand. Customers will also be able to better voice concern with a product, knowing exactly what is wrong with their item – and feeling more confident that their issue will be handled immediately.

Retain More Customers. Bring the Old Ones Back!

Probably one of the more difficult of industries, the Tech World finds innovation, trends and the evolution of technology can sometimes shift response by consumers in support of your brand. So, how do you keep those consumers? It’s simple!

Be their lifeline. Advocate on their behalf. Listen.

When it comes to customer service and often experienced when work is outsourced to individuals with frequent turnover ratios, customers aren’t being heard and call center agents are often treating customers as if they know not what they are talking about. This is a huge problem, especially if a customer knows exactly what they are talking about and where the root of the problem occurs. Not only does this lead to escalations after almost an hour into the call, but it leads customers to lose patience and trust in a brand. They go elsewhere…

Believe it or not, there are many loyalists that love a brand so much, that they stick around based on the customer experience and familiarity with the product. There are others, who simply are content with the product at hand and do not have the time to switch platforms or learn a new one. But if they are experiencing horrible customer service, they are also the first to “jump ship” and leave your brand in the dust!

Cloud contact centers are resolving to integrate features more often, saving time and complexity of resolving the customer’s needs – allowing for more time to be spent on listening to the customer, engaging in short, memorable chit chat and improving customer service. They retain their current customer base, while bringing back former clientele thanks to viral experiences that are shared over and over again.

Eliminate Escalations. Improve Service.

We really should consider our customers as people and stop playing “hot potato” with their issues. Making them call back over and over, dropping their calls, not solving their issues on the first point of contact is only pushing them away – and millennials, as social as they are, will let it be known!

Improving serving impacts the bottom line. Period! Aspect points out – and it’s no laughing matter – that “a third of consumers would rather clean a toilet, than talk to customer service.” Now, isn’t that just crappy? Seriously, though, how can we expect customers to trust our brand when they can’t even trust us to help them in a time of crisis? Furthermore, if they have issues with our products and services, do you think they will return for more – and at such a high cost to their pockets?

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A Case Study: Social Media Listening Needs to Be in Your Marketing Scope for 2016

Cloud Contact Center | TMC Net

Are you ready to listen, yet? As we enter 2016, our social media strategies had better include social listening. Otherwise known as brand monitoring, brands have been finding added value in social media by paying attention to what their enthusiasts have to say.

Whether seeking validation for our future marketing campaigns or looking to improve product delivery, brand monitoring has been benefiting brands across the web for some time now. Business 2 Community recently broke down ten ways social listening can benefit your business. As brands improve the customer experience, we need to improve our customer service strategies, as well. How else can we improve customer service without getting to know our customers intimately?

In early 2015, a telecommunications company (name withheld) lost many customers who were no longer locked into a two-year agreement, thanks to horrible customer service techniques. Not only did their service fall short of expectation, but they faced multiple overcharge and device failure – gaining the brand a bad reputation.

In many cases, refunds were in order for customers spending hours of talk time with customer service, repeating their nightmare to representatives, while pleading to be heard. They often received no follow-ups and were therefore never refunded.

As one of the top three service providers in the United States, they began losing the favor of a loyal fan base. On top of this, potential customers wanted no part of what the brand had to offer. We saw botched marketing campaigns. ROIs suffered.

Social media can be a son of a gun when it comes to marketing to the masses. Every campaign initiated via social media was flooded with negative feedback. Social commenting and storytelling put the brand into overtime and urged them to hire a cloud contact center that could fix their painful dilemma.

Per one negative comment, a minimum of two positive comments must be made to dissuade public opinion. In fact, a “no comment” is better than a negative comment. Negative commenting can bring irreparable damage to a brand via word of mouth experiences.

The brand didn’t listen to begin with. Social media led to further damage. But, when it was adopted as a tool, this brand found the power of social media to be beneficial in repairing their image. It totally turned around the experience for millions of customers, who have since been returning to the network and bringing friends and family with them.

Once the brand began listening, they publicly showed concern with the customer experience – earning back brand trust, bit by bit. They also learned what can be done to improve their brand and what the customer needs.

They learned that towers weren’t feeding devices the way that they should be; and customers were paying for services that they weren’t receiving. They learned that existing contracts with television providers were causing damage to service potential. This led to expedited contracts in fulfilling service plans. They were going to continue losing customers and owe for unfulfilled servicing of their plans.

Because of social media, they were able to identify common issues amongst a network of users. They also learned that their outsourced call centers weren’t living up to the expectations that they once had.

They avoided a PR catastrophe by simply listening. They were protected against competitors, who could easily capitalize off of their weaknesses. With a website that showed nothing but ways a customer would benefit from service, the full picture was gained through social media access. Competitors monitoring this brand could have easily intercepted customers by enacting social listening strategies and jumping into the conversation.

Listening and intercepting the conversation halted “bad mouthing” to friends and family, further allowing the brand to dissuade the conversation. They now control that conversation. This has allowed them to gain new customers. Positive experiences continue the flow of incoming sales leads for the brand and has been the turning point in major decision-making.

Since this experience, this company has become extremely social savvy. They have been showing appreciation for their consumer bases, making them feel special through social sharing of user-generated content and by joining in the fun with memes that their customers can appreciate.

They have been able to leverage key advocates and supporters, influencing new audiences for the better. With new product and service lines, plans have been maximized to better meet customer needs and provide consumers with the exact product that fits their lifestyles… especially those niche lifestyles… all of which lead to brand tenure and continued loyalty.

Social listening is very important and needs to be implemented immediately. If you’re not engaging in some form of brand monitoring in 2016, you will most likely fall behind. 

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A New Standard in CRM for Commerce, Healthcare and Remote Workforces

Video Conferencing, Google Hangouts, Vidyo, WebRTC, Unified Communciations, Google

PREVIOUSLY PUBLISHED TO TMCNET’S WEBRTC SOLUTIONS

A sharp increase in online sales shows that consumers are learning to trust brands through interactive experiences and online platforms. A “buy it now” mentality has influenced the demand for most brands to shift the way they do business and often changing the first point of contact between the brand and the consumer. Most importantly, this adoption has led to an increased need to meet the consumer “at the door” with a qualified sales specialist and customer service representative in assisting the consumer in an enriched shopping experience.

Last week, VeriShow released an integrated solution that benefits Salesforce Live Agent. This customer service tool allows companies to provide an enhanced live chat option in meeting their customers with a better in-store experience.

Taking control of the sales funnel, VeriShow allows agents to lead the customer directly to a particular product or service of interest, as they are given the power to access consumer screens and better guide them through the sales process. This, of course, can be done in real time – and saving energy on behalf of the consumer, while better influencing the point of sale and reducing drop-offs to the sales funnel.

Providing effortless shopping experiences and instant gratification to consumers, customer service representatives and live sales agents will now be better equipped to encourage sales in real time, while translating customer concerns directly with the brand and tightening the sales process for maximized online shopping experiences.

An enriched CRM will lead to more productive sales potential, allowing existing models to evolve in ensuring a future that builds upon the direct needs of consumers, themselves.

The future of customer retention is now more controlled, predictable and able to be scaled, allowing for a deeper satisfaction at the time of transaction than we have ever seen before. Gaps in the sales funnel will now be better explained.

VeriShow demonstrates an added advantage with its current Salesforce integration. Video chatting and screenshares build off of conferencing mechanisms that promote collaboration and better overall communications strategy.

A customer will now have his or her own personal sales representative to assist in every step of the sales process. They can ask questions, voice concern and receive product insight without the need to leave a webpage for additional research. Brands will be paying less in obtaining market research, as well, with customer insight presented right in front of their eyes.

Once a consumer leaves a particular website, they may or may not return. They may find a better price outside of the system or lose interest all together. Shopping with a personal agent will ensure better sales performance and provide a better measure of control in future sales and marketing initiatives.

Vidyo is proving this more recently, holding a patent on the video conferencing experience through mobile cloud technologies in providing a better customer service experiences for millennial users.

As 2016 predictions continue to arise for the increased use of technology in the healthcare industry, HIPPA and human resource-related interests may better be served through tools like VeriShow and Vidyo, when verifying the identity of patients and remote hires.

Delivering added security to private matters, tools will now better assist human resource personnel in the filing and processing of important documentation in real time. Access may be more flexible and easier to grant through convenient online portals. This will reduce visitor wait times within lobbies and waiting rooms all over the world, allowing for better productivity and better accessibility to those we need to speak to the most.

As technologies join forces in creating better experiences for the end-user, we will see this become a trend in Salesforce integration for the 2016 fiscal year. In fact, this type of experience is sure to become a standard in how we do business remotely. Productivity is key, and better interactions help us to accomplish it. 

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TokBox, Polycom Leading to Faster, More Productive Tech & Conferencing Experiences in 2016

Cloud Computing Magazine | TMCNet, Technology Marketing Corporation

PREVIOUSLY PUBLISHED TO TMCNET’S CLOUD COMPUTING MAGAZINE

Recently, TokBox (NewsAlert), a Telefonica company and recognized leader in WebRTC, announced the release of yet another collaborator tool in mobile integrations. While companies are pairing up to bring the ultimate communications experience, TokBox makes its contribution to the overall customer experience, while eliminating some of the frustration that comes with tech support and strategic planning via remote interface. 

As businesses are adopting the ability to engage customers in video-enriched tech experiences, TokBox’s annotation tool allows for convenience in literally pointing out the problem.

Whether through screen sharing or screenshots, TokBox’s annotation tool allows users on either side of the conversation to engage in markup, calling attention to important points within the conversation. While this can already be done through standard mobile editing tools, TokBox allows for live screenshares and annotations through its OpenTok platform.

In tech support, customers can point out exactly what is broken, while specialists can direct customers to exactly which button resets a system and in which direction the switch needs thrown. There is no more room for a twenty-minute conversation trying to explain where on a device the customer should start looking. This cuts back call times, which directly cuts costs for tech support departments and promotes maximized productivity.

TokBox recently released a platform associated with FoxSports and college football. A coach could hold a meeting via remote delivery; strategizing gameplays and maneuvers, similar to what is done by commentators while a game is airing live to television. This would allow college students to be more proactive in their studies while maximizing their potential wins on the field. They would no longer have to skip classes or leave class early just to make a meeting on time.

Like many video conferencing platforms, OpenTok is recordable and able to be accessed at any time. This will benefit those who need a refresher course or would like to study what was discussed during the video conferencing. These platforms are available on both web and mobile platforms.

OpenTok’s annotation tools are currently in beta and have a long way to compete with some of the more advanced tools in video collaboration. But, they are off to an amazing start. Not too many platforms currently allow live annotations, but those that do are leaving our experiences fulfilled.

Polycom (NewsAlert), for example, calls their version of annotation “video whiteboarding.” They actually have created physical tools that allow “in-meeting annotation” and that enable participants to share those annotations on any standard whiteboard or LCD display to everyone on a call.

While basic tools and free form shapes are being made available through these platforms, colleges, such as Harvard’s MIT (NewsAlert), are searching for new ways to make rich annotations available – which would mean encoding more complex algorithms and allowing even more people to join the conversation simultaneously across a variety of streams and a variety of platforms.

In technology, only one’s imagination limits progress. You may not see a need for rich annotation at this point. But in the future, you may wonder how you got along without it. We can thank companies like TokBox and Polycom for their contributions to innovation and for making productivity a forefront of our video conferencing platforms.

This is perhaps an unpredicted and overlooked trend to hit 2016. Will we see more in-conference possibilities that help our business and tech support efforts become more productive? Rumor has it that Elliot Associates’ billionaire, Paul Singer, is pushing for a Polycom integration with Mitel to do just that.

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Health Apps Show Rapid Adoption, Promoting a Healthier Lifestyle Through Usage

Healthcare Apps, Unified Communications, WebRTC, IoT, RFID, Healthcare Solutions

PREVIOUSLY PUBLISHED TO TMCNET’S REAL-TIME COMMUNICATIONS

According to PricewaterhouseCoopers, “Smartphones, connected medical accessories and apps have been underutilized by the healthcare industry.” But, not any more! Recent studies report a shift in the way consumers are caring for their health, as usage soars for health-related apps and technologies.

In 2016, it is predicted that we will see an even larger shift in consumer access to personal records, video diagnoses and even monitoring of our own health. Many of us have alarms set up on our phones already, reminding us to stay hydrated. Others are connecting smartphones to small devices that clock sleeping patterns and restlessness in the night.

This year alone, ensa introduced International audiences to a HIPAA-Compliant app that allows individuals to access healthcare records at any time of day, whenever they please. Most recently, a “Good Habit App” was released by ORCAS to curb bad habits by monitoring cause and effects on health conditions, while instituting good habits in developing healthier individuals. In late 2015, GreatCall acquired Lively, Inc. in supporting the health needs of our growing niche of tech-savvy senior citizens.

For years, consumers have been heading to the Internet to research every sneeze and every scratch that we encounter in our daily lives. Now, we have the capabilities to provide ourselves with the same “anytime, anywhere monitoring, diagnosis and treatment” that we can expect from visiting a healthcare professional in-person.

As healthcare companies are becoming hip to a consumer desire for improved lifestyle decisions, they are seemingly partnering with technology companies to delver solutions and provide a jumping board for promotion of their product and service lines. And, we are loving it!

Taking charge of our lives, a growing consumer niche is moving away from prescriptions medicines as much as possible, while working towards natural healing through diet and exercise, discipline and monitoring. Others are finding life too demanding to visit a physician during office hours and are finding it easier to consult via smartphone.

Forbes reports that one in three consumers have at least one health app on their smartphones. This number has actually doubled over the last two years with an increase of viable solutions in the app marketplace. This also has increased with growth in consumer proficiencies during that time.

The Walgreens Boots Alliance app was first released in 2009 and is now one of the most downloaded apps on the marketplace. It has led to a heightened interaction with consumers via mobile platform, as Walgreens is now showing an average of one prescription fulfillment per second – ordered by mobile app!  Now, how is that for productivity?!

You can run, but you can’t hide. If you are one in two-thirds the consumer base not already using a smart app to monitor health or encourage healthy choices, you may very soon become just that. Innovations are being seen every day, as the health industry leads new technologies in promoting healthy lifestyles to a global consumer base. Now, whether or not you become part of this culture, the question truly is – are you actually going to use it?  Let’s hope so! Here’s to a wonderful New Year full of health, happiness and innovation! 

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Hashtag MoorishLivesMatter: The social media movement towards an awakening

The Sabir Bey Show | #MoorishLivesMatter

PREVIOUSLY PUBLISHED TO EXAMINER

In an era of hashtags and memes, it is somewhat more effective to create a social campaign surrounding a hashtag in order to promote your cause to the World than it is to send out brochures and e-mails, promoting your cause. Statements made through hashtags on Social media are more personable this way.

People are able to connect to those with similar interest by simply clicking hashtag phrases for similar conversational results. Or, they may understand an unfamiliar phrase in a more in-depth matter. These statements are short and simple. They are able to speak their mind in few or minimal words.

In many instances, hashtags actually work as a silent protest and petition. They act to connect users in conversation surrounding issues in their communities or lifestyle. Some hashtags actually gain interest based on the “support” they receive by the social networks that host them.

Take Twitter, for example, they use trending topics to continue social conversation in their system platform. In representing a specific cause or movement, hashtags are simply a way to take a stand, state your opinion and gain awareness while branding a cause with more information. It is a new era. It is our era!

Today, December 23, 2014, representatives of The Sabir Bey Show on LA Talk Live spoke with Examiner about their current “#MoorishLivesMatter” campaign that has been taking over conscious communities around the World. While not as widespread overseas as it is in the United States and Canada, there is a growing interest in this movement, as seen in Europe, Africa and even Australia by many who are aware of their Moorish heritage and decent, especially in the wake of current racial tensions in the US.

Regardless of TMZs ignorance of the Divine Moorish Nation and the misrepresentation in the media and courtrooms of the community, awakened Moorish Americans thrive in numbers, continuing the traditions, practices, ideologies and sciences of their ancestry that was once hidden from them. The problem is that many Moors, today, still do not know who or what they truly are. In fact, those who call themselves “Black” or “Colored,” are doing themselves and their families injustices by not knowing who they truly are. That’s what the #MoorishLivesMatter campaign aims to rectify in educating the masses of their direct origins and rich histories that were stolen from them through unconstitutional highjacking of the law and domestic terrorism that plagues our neighborhoods today.

Many Americans today do not realize that Thomas Jefferson, Benjamin Franklin and John Adams had to sign a treaty with the Sultan of Morocco, Muhamad III, called The Treaty of Peace and Friendship, in order to establish the United States within America’s borders in 1786 and 1787 — The United States, being a trade partner with Morocco and publicly recognized first by the Sultan and then the rest of the World. They do not realize that George Washington’s “cherry tree” was a metaphor for the Moroccan flag of red and green or that The United States Constitution was actually based on Moorish Laws and Principles, as well as Islamic beliefs!

They do not realize that the Moors were the reason Europe became a civilized continent or that they created means for education, language, plumbing and just about every important part of our everyday life! Worst of all, they do not know that the Moors were here before Columbus set sail to the Americas and not all persons with melanated skin came here because of slavery! These are only basic points of interest, but they are important in realizing the dehumanization of a people and the domino effect of human rights violations on today’s communities.

Many people in society say that racism does not exist. They say that slavery has been over for 200 years, but they fail to realize that segregation, hate crimes in the forms of hanging and burning of flourishing cities and the monsterization placed by the media still exist today in some form or fashion, while formally being “ended” less than a century ago. Let’s try less than 50 years ago! They refuse to see that terrorism exists in the World by many authorities. But, what makes it worse, is that “terrorists” can legally get away with it.

#MoorishLivesMatter, as opposed to the popular hashtag #BlackLivesMatter is more meaningful and more likely to make change than the previous. The goal is awareness. Lessons of History, Civics and Law teach knowledge that has been unrealized.

By hiding true histories of bloodlines and dumbing down society, there is a lack of knowledge of the law. And while the Supreme Court has recently ruled out the need for the police to know the law when arresting you, there is no excuse for ignorance of the law. And, it is just that that has created an ongoing cycle of war crimes from physical to mental warfare. While slavery has been over by law, it is the same law that keeps the same people who claim to be descendants of slavery “chattel property.”

Laws and rights of Aboriginal and Indigenous people are very separate from those who are not of the land. It is based on Common Law. They abide by the laws of the land but are not held in the jurisdiction of the Nation who is creating those laws. Because the United States formed through the immigration of European settlers, their laws are separate from those of the people who were here before them.

Treaties in US law verify this and establish these boundaries. Some have worked hard, however, to find loopholes around them, including the creation of certificates to hold people as property, as well as laws that require these people to blindly accept alternative contracts in order to obtain rights given to them in exchange for their contract.

In the case of those who have the belief that they are crayons, based on the thirteenth amendment, they fail to realize that they are only counted as ⅗ of a person in law and are not entitled to anything unless given through process. Using the hashtag #MoorishLivesMatter, one will see the Dred Scott Case being referenced, whereas between the years of 1847 and 1858, Dred Scott fought for his freedom only to be denied by the Supreme Court that ruled out that his “blackness” meant he could never become a true citizen of the United States.

This is strengthened through knowledge of legal jargon (This can be referenced in Black’s Law Dictionary 4th edition and earlier.), whereas “Black” references “CIVILITER MORTUUS (walking dead)” in law and “White” basically means “free and legal status.” If you are dead, you have no rights.

As a matter of fact, #MoorishLivesMatter will also bring up term results for an immigration law that still holds effect today. This law is the Naturalization Act of 1790 that states that “Free White Persons” are not necessarily Caucasian and that those of Moorish descent are also “white” in law. This means that there is a nation to back them in the time of turmoil on this land, whereas there is no country called “Black” or “Africa.”

#MoorishLivesMatter often asks, “Which country in Africa are you from, if you are African American? And, which country in America are you from?” They discuss how these continents are made up of many countries. When there are two nations in dispute, the United Nations may then become a mediator. When there are not two nations, the UN cannot interfere. This is one way much injustice is done on American soil, soil previously known as North West Amexem or Al-Moroc.

#MoorishLivesMatter intends to be a trend that creates awareness and saves lives, while creating opportunities for our future generations, predicted by the Prophet Noble Drew Ali to “come in with their eyes wide open, seeing and knowing” the truths of the land. It was Noble Drew Ali who brought this information to the attention of many in the 1920s in hopes of “uplifting fallen humanity” through the five “divine” principles of Love, Truth, Peace, Freedom and Justice, which are also symbolized in the five points of the green star in the Moorish American flag.

#MoorishLivesMatter reminds us that there is a unity to uphold and that many who consider themselves of the European race are actually of Moorish Descent, including Sicilians, Spanish, Irish and French persons.

There is often a misunderstanding that Moorish people are of Muslim origin, while it is true that many were and are. Even Noble Drew Ali stressed that first man must find his religious creed to establish spirituality with his creator, but only to find “Self-Knowledge, Self-Realization and Self-Revelation” and that this is the route to creating the perfected man. This is how unity is understood through multiple bloodlines of Moorish Origin, as well as the several different religious practices of all in this community.

#MoorishLivesMatter shares the same topics and subject matter as its originator, The Sabir Bey Show, bringing “Pure Edu-tainment” to the lives of weekly viewers in over 180-countries around the Globe!

While a collaborative of participants throughout the week, #MoorishLivesMatter is a hashtag that is most active on Tuesdays from 6:00-7:30PM Est on TheSabirBeyShow.com or at various places for “LA Talk Live” listening platforms, such as Tunein Radio, Live365 and Roku Streaming Video Players. The host of the show is Sabir Bey, a title (not a name) meaning “Patient Governor” or “Patient Teacher (depending on who is translating it).” Co-hosts include, Pilar Biggers Sanders Love El-Dey, Alberto Gaytan El, Salvador Dey, Shakim Williams and Carl Gilkey. Occasionally, the team is joined by Krysten Littles, Astrologer for The Cosmo Report.

Understanding that Black History is only a portion of Moorish History will lead you to an understanding that whether you are “So-Called Black,” “Hispanic,” “Middle Eastern,” “Native American” or any other “race” of melanated people, you are all family and from the same Asiatic and African roots. This is what the #MoorishLivesMatter Movement teaches Tweeters, Facebookers and Surfers all over the World!

DISCLAIMER: Jessica N. Abraham is no longer affiliated with the show or any creative assets, thereof. Since 2016, the site and all assets have been under new ownership. All designs, edits and administration to the official websites are no longer controlled by Jessica N. Abraham or Shorty Produkshins.

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Bell Labs Study Delivers Connectivity and Support Intel for Service Providers

Next Generation Communications, IP Transformation, Advanced Broadband Networks, Digital Lifestyles, Eco-Sustainable Telco Solutions, Dynamic Enterprise, Service Delivery Environment, Advanced Broadband Networks, End to End Transformation, Advanced Business Models, Business Transformation, Services Transformation, Service Delivery Platform, Killer Telco Environment and Managed Telco Services

PREVIOUSLY PUBLISHED TO TMCNET’S NEXTGEN VOICE

Faced with issues in connectivity, families are competing for signal strength in powering their personal and shared devices through Wi-Fi signals. Bell Labs (NewsAlert) recently released a study, informing consumers that simplifying digital home networks will lead to easier connectivity and reduce the need for technical assistance or home service repairs. Now, all fingers are pointing to the service provider, who currently holds all the cards to innovation.

In fact, skyrocketing service costs and rising monthly service fees are directly associated with complexity on consumer gateways. Instead, Bell Labs proposes that service providers can reduce operating costs by simply creating virtual gateways within a cloud and reduce operating costs by 40 percent.

While residential gateways are critical to home networks and connecting consumers to the Internet, they are somewhat old-fashioned and can be streamlined into a simpler format. This format will alleviate network congestion and allow consumers to connect multiple devices at higher speeds than they have ever experienced in a home-based network.

According to Alcatel-Lucent (NewsAlert), “A virtualized residential gateway (vRGW) addresses this issue by moving functions like IP routing and Network Address Translation (NAT) into the cloud, along with centralized management and control.”

Through “always-on” technology, our devices are said to demand more than 100 mbps of speed in just synching our data. Meanwhile, there are many households that are lucky enough to get 1 mbps out of their Wi-Fi connection through some of the Nation’s most popular service providers. Congestion leads to failure and has increased the cost of in-home tech support, impacting the overall pricing of service.

Leveraging network function virtualization has a great adventure ahead of itself, as service providers will first need to adopt this concept and then work to quickly integrate this technology into the cloud and connect directly to individual systems. The solution is already available on the market with new capabilities due in early 2016.

“This is critical to operationalize the rapid introduction of new features and automate the delivery of new value added services for the home network, without having the necessity to upgrade the customer premises equipment,” states Enrique Hernandez-Valencia, Consulting Director at Bell Labs.

This move is said to lower costs tremendously and allow end-users to better understand the signal flow and process of their connection, as it relates to their in-home gadgets and devices. Service fulfillment, alone, will drop by anywhere between 7 and 12 percent. It is also said to speed up process for set up, activation and install.

This means no more waiting three days in a row for a technician to show up between 1 and 4 P.M.

Because over 40 percent of users are reporting connection issues related to something within the network, itself, techs will now be able to make repairs service-side, easily detecting exactly where in the system these errors are occurring.

Presently, the system is too complex to identify root cause without actually visiting the customer’s location and inspecting the connection directly. This will save the service provider upwards of 67 percent on average.

While we might not see a price drop in servicing, we most likely won’t see increases in cost any time soon. We will also see more durable connections and – actual “lightening speed” connections.

It’s funny how long it takes some technologies to catch the attention of the world it has been spawned from. In 2013, Huawei (NewsAlert) actually released to first software-defined networking (SDN) and network functions virtualization through a virtual residential gateway  (vRGW), the solution for the family, as revenues started to decline for service providers and customers were beginning to lose satisfaction with their at-home connectivity.

In fact, it was in 2013 that Christian Chua, Director of the R&D Department of Huawei’s Fixed Business Department, said, “In the coming ten years, the telecom industry will experience a new round of IT-based transformations. As this happens, ICT convergence and innovation will expand into various fields of the telecom industry.”

Almost three years later, we are finally seeing movement into this direction. Three years have passed and businesses chose to lose revenue by not keeping up with simple solutions.

Now that cloud-based technologies are everywhere, perhaps it is now we can relax to a nice movie on our smart TV without lag, glitch or loss in connectivity. Perhaps now, our last minute papers will actually be handed in on time. Here’s to the future!

Follow the link to learn how “Virtualized Residential Gateway is The Path to the Future.

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BrightPoint Security Enhances Community-Based Threat Intelligence Capabilities

Cloud Contact Center | TMC Net

PREVIOUSLY PUBLISHED TO TMCNET’S CLOUD SECURITY

It’s no secret that criminals will always search for ways around even the most advanced security, whether with the mission to takeover, destroy or steal. Cyber attacks are imminent for all businesses that find themselves doing well – or at least appearing to be. Early warning signs aren’t always there to shield businesses from threat; but when they are, BrightPoint Security can provide solutions, intelligence and protections amongst their IT infrastructures and partner ecosystems.

 BrightPoint Security’s Threat Intelligence Platform provides “automation, curation and the sharing of threat intelligence” amongst enterprises, helping them to shield against cyber attacks based on trends and vulnerability. In the latest Sentinel release BrightPoint Security has added enhancements to give IT security professionals better insight, almost immediately, for predicting when potential threats could strike, as well as the risk level that comes with it, enabling IT to enforce security controls.

Of interest here is the use of community-based threat intelligence which allows businesses to share experiences, providing insight to one another and awareness of current and emerging threats across enterprises, their digital ecosystems and infrastructures.  In this way community member will be able to at first assessment to remediate potential risk, while calculating velocity, time and frequency of future attacks.

An evolved technology from the already widely received Security Command Platform (SCP), Sentinel adds modules and deeper insight to how to avoid these attacks through Sentinel’s Trusted Circles. As BrightPoint Security notes, the solution is unlike other threat intelligence platforms that focus only on the tracking of popular, volume-based threats.  Utilizing early prediction forecasts, Sentinel is characterized as a weather map of trending threats to the digital ecosystem.

“An industry first, this predictive insight and threat trending dashboard gives organizations the solution to determine the urgency of response needed to protect themselves,” states Rich Reybok, BrightPoint CTO. Reybok continues, “Today’s offering helps customers drive security strategy and get the most out of their security investments and resources by now having the ability to respond to the most immediate and relevant impending threats and to mitigate exposure fast.”

The latest release of Sentinel allows integration with Carbon Black, scanning the environment for any and all internal threats to provide real-time insights within set perimeters. “Working with BrightPoint’s evidence-based solution enhances our support across customers’ ecosystems and infrastructures with predictive insights into risk-prioritized actions for remediation,” said Brian Hazzard, Bit9 (News – Alert) + Carbon Black VP of Technical Alliances. “Adding the endpoint into the mix of threat vectors deepens organizations’ overall view of the threat landscape of their organization and those with whom they share information in their ecosystems.” 

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Sean “Diddy” Combs launches luxury gifting service, personalized tequila arrives

Sean "Diddy" Combs introduces Deleon, personalized tequila -- a luxury Christmas gift.

PREVIOUSLY PUBLISHED ON EXAMINER

DELEÓN™ Tequila, a luxury-spirit by Sean “Diddy” Combs, prides itself on being “one of the world’s finest tequilas.” Commencing service Nov. 30, Combs announced the launch of a new personalized bottling service that allows more meaningful gift giving through the holidays. Esteemed for its grandeur, DELEÓN™ Platinum and Respado are now available for procurement during this Christmas season through the DELEÓN™ Tequila Combs Concierge Program.

In partnership with Reserve Bar, DELEÓN™ Tequilla is allowing consumers to take their gift-giving to the next level, providing engraved bottling and personalized delivery service, directly to the “of age” recipient. A centerpiece to upcoming holiday festivities, DELEÓN™ Tequilla is made of “100% Blue Weber agave sourced from the highlands of Jalisco, Mexico and achieves the highest level of smoothness and quality across multiple variants.”

“There’s nothing like a personal touch to show someone that you care,” states Sean “Diddy” Combs, Chairman of Combs Enterprises. “That’s why I developed the Combs Concierge program – to help people give the gift of luxury with a personalized bottle of DELEÓN™, the world’s finest tequila.”

A special delivery is enough to melt any heart. Accompanied by a high-end signature-serve cocktail kit and drink stirrers, deliveries will include a message engraved in a bottle and a personal note from Mr. Combs, himself. The bottle has been made from a top-grade fragrance-class glass, said to be a keepsake by designers of the brand. Combs Wine & Spirits was founded in 2013 and is privately owned, focusing on high impact growth, while promoting social responsibility.

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Instacard and Target partner for shopping, delivery in one hour or less

Instacart and Target team up to deliver groceries to your front porch

PREVIOUSLY PUBLISHED ON EXAMINER

Businesses, who are not catering to their Online audiences, have just lost a major chunk of the marketplace. As a matter of fact, with more consumers working from a home office, it is to be expected that a majority of their shopping would also take place Online. After all, there is no grocery store stop on their way home from work, when they already work from home.

Instacart and Target partner to capitalize on the ideal that many families find it more convenient to shop from home than traditionally visiting the grocery store to wait in long lines and deal with cashiers with bad attitudes.

Expanding their partnership into the Greater Chicago Area, Instacart and Target are working together in deliveries to their at-home consumers. In fact, they are working hard to ensure customers in many major cities, including Minneapolis and San Francisco, can securely order fresh food and produce through their Online platforms and have them delivered to their doorstep in under an hour. The timing was synched to provide shoppers with a “Target fulfillment option” during the holiday season, as cities become extremely busy – the at-home professional being no exception.

Our continued growth with Target in both Minneapolis and San Francisco has confirmed our customers’ demand for Target on Instacart,” states John Maslowski, Business Development Lead for Instacart. “We are very excited to expand our partnership to Chicago to provide even more customers convenient, same day delivery of Target’s great assortment. With the holiday season upon us and winter well on its way, we are happy to provide our customers with the opportunity to shop at Target through Instacart during this busy time of the year.”

Not only does Target ensure delivery of food-based products, they are also providing consumers with the ability to purchase health and beauty products, pet and household supplies – even baby items, which will come in really handy for the new mom in need of diapers – stat!

Instacart, founded in 2012, is one of the country’s fastest-growing companies, allowing consumers “to order groceries Online by connecting them with personal shoppers who handpick items at customers’ local, favorite stores and deliver straight to their doors.”

Operating out of over 18 metropolitan areas across the United States, Instacart has partnered with many of our nation’s top retailers and grocery chains to enable customers with the ability to “save time and eat fresh.” They pride themselves on being “the only grocery service that can meet today’s on-demand lifestyle by delivering in as little as one hour.” It was named by Forbes as “America’s Most Promising Company” in January of 2015.

Today, Dec. 1, 2015, Instacart’s partnership with Target has led to a “Giving Tuesday” in celebration of their new expansion into the Chicago territory. Customers shopping in the city will be helping a local food charity through purchases. Instacart will be donating one non-perishable food item per delivery made.

In addition to Target, shoppers can also shop at Whole Foods Market without membership, Petco, Mariano’s, Plum Market, Tony’s Finer Foods, Pete’s Fresh Market, Local Foods and Jewel-Osco grocery stores. In 18 cities already, Instacart is coming to a city near you!

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