avatar Benjamin Otterbach

Changing of the Guard – It’s time for a secure email rethink

By Benjamin Otterbach, Product Manager OX Guard, Open-Xchange

One of the main reasons for the enduring popularity of email is its speed and simplicity. Type your message, enter the address, hit send. That’s it. Neither the sender nor the receiver has to worry about anything else. Of course, those of us that work in the Internet industry know that sending a message or other data from point A to point B is a lot more complicated than that, but we’ve built products that hide the back end processes involved and take the pain out of messaging for the ordinary user.

So, sending a message is easy, but what about sending a message securely?

If we want to be sure that our email is only being read by those intended, then we rely on encryption. The problem is, however, that there is no truly simple way to send an encrypted email, and even then the recipient will need to know how to decrypt a message and have access to the correct encryption keys. By the time you’ve figured how to encrypt a message from your end, you can be certain that those in your contacts with the ability to open such a message will be in the distinct minority.

When only 17 per cent of those attending Europe’s largest information security event believe their existing secure information sharing system was easy use we know we have a large scale problem. This is a survey of those working closely with the information security industry, acutely aware of the issues and risks of unencrypted messaging. If this audience don’t think encryption is easy to use, then what hope is there for the rest of us?

A perfectly secure system that is difficult to use is pointless. It won’t solve a security problem because no one will choose to use it. Conversely, a simplified security system won’t solve the problem either – users won’t be convinced of its ability to protect their data so it removes any incentive to use it in the first place.

For encryption to become a viable option a balance needs to be struck: robust enough to deter those wishing to intercept this data, but easy enough for not only the sender to use, but also the recipient. It also needs to work anywhere, in any context.

That discounts two recent efforts by both Google and Yahoo to offer simple PGP encryption to their respective webmail products. Utilising a Chrome extension to automate the PGP encryption process, it allows the sender to easily create an encrypted message. Great – but it fails to solve the issue of what the recipient is to do with an encrypted message and also means that you can only use it from within the Chrome browser. In essence, it’s a bolt-on quick fix to the problem, and doesn’t solve the root of the issue.

For the last year, Open-Xchange has been focused on getting to this very root, and rather than taking the bolt-on approach to encryption, we’ve opted for the baked-in. Next month sees the launch of OX Guard, the name of our security solution, offering simplified yet robust email and data encryption for users of OX App Suite. It requires no prior user knowledge of encryption techniques, and will work inside the browser, without any need for special plugins.

Emails sent to recipients within the OX environment will be decrypted automatically on reading, while external email addresses will be sent a secure link to read the encrypted content in the browser. Instead of receiving the usual text-based email, external users are sent a special notification containing a URL to the secure message. By following the link and entering a password pre-defined by the sender, the recipient gains access to the encrypted content. With a range of more advanced security features available to users, customising levels of security is also designed to be simple.

Using OX Guard, it really is as simple as typing your message, entering the address, and hitting send securely. That’s all there is to it. No sharing keys, no installing plugins and no excuse not to encrypt.

If you are interested in finding out more information on OX Guard, you can attend an exclusive workshop on day three of OX Summit 14. Register now at summit.open-xchange.com to join leading names in the telco, cloud and hosting industry in Munich on the eve of Oktoberfest.

 

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How has the IaaS market changed and how does it impact hosters?

Guest Blog by Phil Shih, Structure Research

The competitive IaaS landscape continues to change and this has had an indelible impact on the hosting market. We take a look at the recent movements and discuss the key trends that are currently in motion and set to shape the competitive dynamics of the future.

• Increasingly uneven playing field

The biggest impact is an increasingly uneven playing field created by the massive-scale cloud. Amazon, Google and Microsoft have scale and resources that hosters will not be able to match over the long-term. They can drive unit costs lower than previously imagined, hire more development talent, procure more capex and even incur losses on an ongoing basis. The recent price cutting frenzy is indicative of where this market is going. Raw and low-cost cloud infrastructure is going to be an increasingly tougher market.

• Competing on pricing no longer viable strategy in mass-market

Competing on price will be a thing of the past soon than later and this pertains most immediately to raw compute and storage. Hosters are not going to compete on price against Amazon, Google or Microsoft.

• More specialization for hosters

More of the smaller independent hosters will become increasingly specialized. They will get out of tightening markets and find use cases, requirements and verticals they can serve well and that the larger players do not excel in.

• Pushing focus of hosters to value-add

The changes have forced the hosting sector to focus more heavily on value-add. Not being able to compete on scale and resources means driving value-add and margin on top of raw infrastructure. Margin is required to make up for the edge given up when it comes to scale and value-add is crucial for differentiation and solving problems and addressing use cases that favour the smaller more nimble provider.

• Creating new products that build on scale

The presence of massive-scale has created opportunity to build value on top of it. Hosters are doing this by taking on a more of an MSP role and managing existing infrastructure running on massive-scale platforms. They are also using massive-scale to build products.
For example, some hosters are backing up servers to S3 or using it to create DR products. Others are building hybrid environments: colocation and cloud for example. In these scenarios the common denominator is scale – provided by an Amazon of Microsoft – with the hoster building value and differentiation on top.

 

To continue the discussion, meet me at Open-Xchange Summit, Munich, on September 18.

 

*Disclosure: Open-Xchange is a Structure Research subscriber

avatar Maurice Hofmann, VP OX Performance Program - The Americas

Why Open APIs are a business and marketing issue and not just a technical one

OX App Suite in its latest version features even more openness and a greater integration potential for external products than previous releases. Sales, professional services and pretty much anyone else at OX will tell you how great that is– and all the benefits of those “Open APIs”. However, this is not about a sales pitch or a technical “brain assault” to try to persuade you to using these APIs.

Enter the Open-Xchange Performance Program. We see ourselves as partners, consultants and a technical resource to our clients, sitting on their side of the table. OXPP has the same values as OX clients working for the same target audience: the user, be it a consumer or a SMB / SME professional.

For OXPP, “Open APIs” is a topic where we help our clients to make the most of this set of technologies and to create a product or service that offers an experience that is as customisable as possible. “Open APIs”, are a gateway to a universe in which social openness and integration is the currency that counts (Lord & Velez, 2013). Integration of social accounts, the offer of unified email, calendars and storage quite simply is just the beginning — a mere example of what our clients can and should expect in the future.

Instead of looking to OX to provide more, they should take this as an opportunity and run with it and see what more can be offered to the customer. Frankly, OX does as much as it can to share knowledge of best practices to enable service providers. Our motto for furthering this knowledge is W&W– wiki and workshops. It’s good to refresh the memory as sometimes what’s important gets lost in the myriad of messages that are relayed during the sales pitch.

OXPP reaffirms the “same-side-of-the-table” mind set. OXPP continually brainstorms ideas with OX clients to discover what other applications could be added from the existing client portfolio. Access to the control panel, billing, website building wizard, TV schedule, parental monitoring and a hundred other applications and widgets that are important for the clients and, more importantly, for their users.

How much clients customize the OX App Suite portal to create a one-stop-shop for their users will define their success, and with that, our success. Creating value for the user must be at the forefront of all conversations around “Open APIs” much more than just wandering off into technical detail. Business and marketing groups have to own that topic and be the driver behind it. Those groups own the responsibility for retention, recirculation and revenue – The 3 R’s– the holy trilogy of OX and the topic of the next OXPP blog.

avatar Frank Hoberg, Executive VP - Sales

The Future Of Secure Communications: A Return To The Old Fashioned Way?

The infinite monkey theorem predicts that if a monkey hit the keys on a typewriter randomly for an endless amount of time, it would eventually type the complete works of William Shakespeare. Should the German government type all confidential memos using a typewriter rather than emails, how long would it take until the NSA found themselves studying copies of ‘Romeo and Juliette’?

Since Snowden’s revelations about NSA’s actions and the resulting allegations that European leaders had their phones hacked by the US intelligence agency, suspicions over extreme surveillance and mistrust have been at an all-time high. So much so that in a recent interview Patrick Sensburg, the head of the Bundestag’s parliamentary inquiry into NSA activity in Germany has admitted that the German government is seriously considering moving away from modern communications technology and turning instead to the typewriter.

Regressing to basic ink and paper may seem an overreaction, although perhaps not if we consider the reason for the unease in Germany. It has been alleged that German PM Angela Merkel’s, phone was hacked by the NSA, sparking uncomfortable memories of surveillance within the country’s history. The shadow of the Stasi still hangs over the minds of many Germans who have experienced mass surveillance and state intrusion within their lifetimes. It is a situation that no one wishes to return to.

In order for countries trade, business and technology to move forward, trust needs to be restored in communication channels, and presently the only way for this to happen is for governments, businesses and individuals to implement more secure, ideally encrypted, methods for transmitting and sharing data. Snowden himself recently made an appeal for the development of easy to use encryption technologies for use by everybody, not just the technically skilled.

At the moment, while the majority of encryption products available on the market are secure and robust, they are too complicated for the layman to use; it takes a high level of knowledge and effort to encrypt emails or file synchronization, as well as cooperation from recipients who also need to understand the process and have access to your encryption keys.

What we need are solutions that are straight forward and require very little extra effort or knowledge to run. A solution that is very easy to use and doesn’t require the sender or recipient to go through multiple steps to ensure the message can only be read or accessed by those it was intended for.

Here at Open-Xchange, we are working on something that does just that. A product that offers robust, easy-to-use encryption and protection and, most importantly, peace of mind. On September 18th at OX Summit in Munich we will be sharing more details on this exciting new product.

Make sure you attend to get a first look. For further information and free registration, visit summit.open-xchange.com

avatar Chris Latterell, VP Marketing Open-Xchange

Happy Birthday, America. Germany Might Understand Freedom Better than You

You know what? John Oliver was right: “Apple could put the entire text of Mein Kampf in the iTunes user agreement and you would just be, like, ‘– uh, um: agree – agree’.”

It’s true. We want our Interweb. We want our SpotiTunes. We want our Lolcatz. And, short of immediate bodily harm befalling our beloved family pet or children, we don’t care what we have to do or agree to in order to get it.

And you know what else? You might think it’s funny that he references that infamous German text (and, even though that book still elicits profoundly sensitive reactions here in Germany, you’d be right). But he could have just as easily used The Communist Manifesto or Lolita (ok, maybe that’s a stretch), but he didn’t. He used a German text, and that’s also incredibly relevant at this moment.

The German Government recently said it will not renew a contract with Verizon Communications for Internet Services after it expires in 2015 specifically because “The ties revealed between foreign intelligence agencies and firms in the wake of the US National Security Agency affair show that the German government needs a very high level of security for its critical networks.”

Let that sink in for a minute. That’s Germany, a country who suffered under ubiquitous surveillance and extreme human rights violations from two different totalitarian regimes for more than half of the twentieth century, saying to one of the biggest companies in America “Fool me once, shame on you; fool me twice, shame on me; but I will not be fooled a third time – no thanks.” That’s a nation who has made terms like Stasi part of the world’s every-day lexicon telling a world superpower they no longer want to do business with them because they can’t trust them to protect privacy and freedom.

At this point, as you are reaching for that second Bud Light and the next bottle rocket with which to symbolically celebrate the explosion of freedom America brought forth on this day in 1776, you might be asking yourself “but wait – are things really that bad? Sure, Verizon may be sharing personal information from its users with the U.S. government, but it’s all in the name of protecting what this bottle rocket in my hand represents. Plus, I’m not a bad person, so this will never affect me.”

Well, funny you should ask, because, actually, it does.

In a document the NSA released last year, the agency says through its programs, where they are taking data from companies like Verizon and other major Internet companies, that it “touches” 1.6 percent of daily internet traffic. The document also says that the Internet as a whole carries 1,826 petabytes of information per day (One petabyte is equivalent to over 13 years of HDTV video).

Now, 1.6 percent certainly makes it sound like the NSA’s activities and the big tech companies’ cooperation with them isn’t that big of a deal. But, when you consider that last year 30 percent of the world’s Internet traffic was used for viewing pornography, and when you learn that “because large quantities of Internet data is represented by music and video sharing, or large file transfers – content which is easy to identify and dismiss without entering it into systems,” leading people like journalism professor and Internet commentator Jeff Jarvis to say that “the NSA’s 1.6% of net traffic would be half of the communication on the net,” the NSA’s reassurances start to look about as comforting as the fact that the Fourth of July is NOT one of the 11 days in the year when people in the U.S. watch the least amount of Internet porn.

But it was no secret that these companies were harvesting this data in the first place. Talking with friends and family back in the States, I see how comfortable people have become in how they use their personal profiles to enable companies’ advertising algorithms based on their habits. They seem not phased that Google knows what they’re planning to cook for dinner, when they’re thinking about buying a new pair of shoes, and the fact that they have $200 in illegal out-of-state fireworks in their basement.

Sure, maybe to most people that isn’t such a bad thing. Maybe it’s even desirable. As an ex-pat looking-in from the outside, it’s like a never-ending birthday party for government agencies who are daily given the gift of a pre-filled profiles that they can leverage as they see fit to pressure and control any activity seen as a threat (in secret). The ROI on the surveillance state and the 54 “cases of terrorism prevented” seem unsustainably bankrupt without check nor balance.

In addition to knowing your birthday and the fact that you rate The Backstreet Boys as the best band ever, Facebook also knows what your political beliefs are, if you sympathize with a particular cause, and if you are in contact with anyone of dubious character. It’s easy to see why any government would want this information, and in a way it could even be argued that it would be negligent of an intelligence service if they did not try to access this information if it is being stored in the first place.

And that is the real problem, and why we must return to Mr. Oliver’s quote from earlier and face the other reality of why we are so willing to click the ‘agree’ button on those terms of service:

It’s not just that we are a bit lazy, it’s that these big communications providers and tech companies have figured out the power of the terms of service agreement: “if you want to do something evil, put it inside something boring.”

The ‘terms of service’ that Internet companies provide today protect their own interests, and in many ways also, the government’s interests. Most Internet users don’t read them, and even fewer really understand them. And yet, they change all the time to suit the service provider, and rarely offer you the chance to opt out. When you click ‘agree’ you surrender any rights you thought you had and allow anything you do or say online to essentially become the property of the company that provided you with the slick app that you used to share it. There’s probably a data center in Nevada that has more legal right to your ideas than you do.

The root of the problem is not simply that governments have gained access to this data, but that this data exists in such a manner in the first place: to be stored, analyzed and re-used by whomever is the highest buyer (and with copies for sure). Yeah sure, we knew it was being collected, and that the profiles were being built, but have seemed to be willing to put up with it. Especially if it meant that Target could send you a deal on a nice pair of espadrilles just before you jetted off to Miami.

Citizens, and many businesses, are backed into a corner with these perversely out-of-control terms of service. Small businesses, for example, can’t afford not to have a good placing on Google search results, but changes as to how Google rates online presence are now heavily influenced by activity on Google+. If you want to feature prominently on the search engine, you have to accept all the terms and conditions that go along with that. There might be one small condition that you object to, but the all-or-nothing approach of these agreements means you must surrender your freedom of choice just to get the benefits on offer.

It’s time for us to reject these terms of service and work together to build new terms that work for the user, and not the companies that control and monitor how we use the Internet. An Internet of the people, by the people, for the people. A common set of rules that apply to every service or application, written for the user and not the developer or service provider. A set of rules that won’t lock out a user from the whole app if they don’t want to grant the app certain permissions, a set of rules that gives confidence and freedom of choice and expression to the user without worrying about future judgement.

But if the Internet giants won’t stand for your freedom and make these terms of service more transparent and user-minded, who will?

Just last week, in a unanimous decision that many are calling hugely important for protecting citizens against unauthorized use and collection of their personal data, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that the vast amount of data contained on modern cellphones must be protected from routine inspection.

Personally I can’t decide what’s more ironic: that 9 highly politically-polarized Americans could agree on anything at all; or that more than a quarter of a millennium after declaring independence from a British government that was seen as overly regulatory, that perhaps America’s greatest hope for continued freedom and independence on the Internet is expanded regulation.

You want independence? You want freedom? You want the right to watch Perez Hilton “80’s celebrities: where are they now?” slideshows in blissful anonymity? Yes? Do you? Then after you’ve lit that final bottle rocket, honored your nation’s founders, and thought about the freedoms that America represents, pick up the phone.

Who you call – your congressman to demand regulation, or your Internet provider to demand a new terms of service – is entirely up to you. And that choice you still have, for now.

avatar Chris Latterell, VP Marketing Open-Xchange

Have you got the message yet? The modern messaging landscape still includes email

Email, as we know it today, is just over 20 years old – and has only been in widespread use for considerably less than that. But there has been no shortage of those wishing to tell us that as a medium it is dead and buried. Most recently, two UK Universities have said how students no longer want to communicate via email and are focusing efforts on answering queries via social media channels instead.

“For this generation, this is a normal way of communicating and their expectations are very high,” said Katie Connolly of Birmingham University in an attempt to write email’s obituary. “You can’t leave things a week or two. Email is slower.”

Communication is constantly evolving, and it would be hasty to say that social media will replace it entirely. But the evidence suggests that more and more people are actually moving away from email – not to social networks – but to a new breed of messaging applications. Perhaps the main reason why Facebook agreed to purchase WhatsApp for $19Bn – no small pocket change, that’s for sure.

In just a couple of years, OTT messaging services have grown exponentially in use. A recent report in GigaOM shows that six of the most commonly used services now handle tens of billions of messages a day and have over a billion users. WhatsApp users alone send over 50 billion messages a day. A staggering figure.

So, what does this mean for email?

With 3.9 billion email accounts worldwide today – and an annual growth rate of 6% (more than 4.9 billion accounts by 2017) – email is still entrenched in how people work and communicate. Just like the TV and Radio were reported of dying, the truth of the matter is: the eyes of the partners we talk to get wide when they understand the options they have to go beyond email (both in financial terms and extending reach of online services) partnering with Open-Xchange.

What sets email apart is that it was the first electronic messaging protocol that we could all own a piece of. Almost everyone has at least one email address now, and that’s not likely to change any time soon. It’s still the preferred method of communication for business, and for all the benefits of OTT messaging services, it’s not quite the right medium for long form, nuanced official messages.

Email, social networks and OTT messages all form part of a rich tapestry of communications. Let’s not forget, either, the role that video and voice can play, or even managing appointments for face-to-face meetings.

One thing that is sure not to change in all of this is the user, and while channels of messaging increase and become more fragmented, the need to centralize communications becomes greater than ever. It’s the evolution of the webmail platform that has been driving this change in centralizing communications – pulling in different messaging streams into one home, accessible across a range of devices.

This is where OX App Suite comes in: we’ve mastered email, and are advancing how integrating social feeds across the communication cycle are changing how people work. Next up, is voice and video — powered by Voiceworks – and meshing-up productivity work flows and how we daily keep in touch stay private. And with our open architecture, there are no limits to what else can be integrated within OX App Suite: making people’s creation and sharing of personal content a more seamless part of a secure web experience. What software do you trust to deliver you this experience and value?

avatar Rafael Laguna, CEO, Open-Xchange

Breaking down the Internet’s walled gardens

It’s no secret to those of us in the open source community how open technology brings a necessary visibility and transparency that creates countless opportunities to improve and enhance technology. Yet, despite the obvious (to us) industry-wide benefits of open source, many leading technology companies are still taking a “walled garden” approaches to their products and services that stifles innovation.

The Internet, as Tim Berners-Lee envisioned it when he created the World Wide Web, is supposed to be the great democratizer. But today, giant companies are still using gated ecosystems to lock customers in, inhibiting the potential to expand, improve and innovate the Web. Even more important than this innovation hurdle is the harm walled gardens create in terms of transparency, openness and security.

We have been lulled in to the state where we must provide more and more information to our captors to get the services they provide. In some cases, the companies that create walled gardens have become actual Data States, which hold all our data and are arguably more influential than most nation states. Along with organizations like the NSA, Data States threaten the democratic nature of the Internet.

But there’s hope. The closed off practices of many walled garden organizations are catching up with them as users are standing up to challenge the status quo and take back their Internet freedoms. The backlash against walled gardens has resulted in several recent changes of hears, with major companies reversing their traditionally closed policies in the name of protecting privacy, choice and openness.

For example, Apple recently revealed at its latest developer conference that the new iOS will be more open, granting developers access to key parts of the iOS code, creating a more collaborative Apple community. Similarly, Microsoft’s new CEO, Satya Nadella, is rapidly changing the company’s direction as they focus on mobile and cloud.

Formerly perhaps the best example of a Data State, Microsoft is to some degree embracing open source culture because it knows it is the best way to succeed in the more flexible world of the cloud, and is also key to maintaining trust among its users in the post-Snowden era. Just have a look at the debate that is now brewing over Microsoft’s Dublin data center and their legal team now gearing up to contest the ruling earlier this year to hand over one of their customer’s data wholesale.

This trend is spreading outside the software industry, too. Tesla Motors recently announced it will make its patents publically available, a step towards open sourcing the automobile industry as an effort to spur more innovation and growth for electric cars. For both the electric car industry and the software industry alike, steps toward openness and standardization are the best way to break down the walled gardens, which have too long promoted secrecy, undermined privacy and discouraged innovation.

The days of closed innovation models are going away; now we must focus on connecting human innovation and freedom across the ways we work and play. That’s why our claim to “Stay Open” is an important call we must unify around. When we don’t stay open to demand honest business models for our digital lives (vs. the exploitation of convenience), the walled gardens of the current Internet won’t have windows.

I recently wrote more on this topic in a post for WIRED, which you can read here

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Open-Xchange adds reseller deployment model; opex, time to market

Guest Blog by Phil Shih, Structure Research

Summary: Open-Xchange introduced a new deployment model for the App Suite messaging and collaboration platform called OX-as-a-Service.

Details: OX-as-a-Service is a hosted version of the OX App Suite run in third party data centres and managed by Open-Xchange. We confirmed with OX that the service will start in two data centres: one in Germany and one in the US. The German data centre is in Hamburg. In the US OX will partner with Hostway and house the service in a data centre in Chicago. OX will host and manage the service and customers can opt out whenever they want and host on their own if they wish.

New deployment model about options: The offering is for hosters, service providers and telcos that do not want to build out infrastructure and simply sell the service directly to customers. This will reduce time to market and lower upfront investment. They can consume in an opex model and avoid a capex outlay.

Partners: Telecom Italia Digital Solutions is one of the first partners for OX-as-a-Service. It will sell the service hosted out of the Hamburg, Germany data centre. Telecom Italia us using Parallels Automation as its delivery platform.

Angle: This is about knocking down barriers and making it easier for hosters and service providers to jump into this offering. The sales cycle can often be long and the technical implementation stage takes time and energy as well. OX is taking this out of the equation and reducing risk. OX is obviously highly qualified to run the service and this ultimately makes it an on-boarding tool. Hosters can continue to learn how to run the service while they are reselling it and gain the expertise over time rather than rushing into it. This makes even more sense for telcos and integrators that have very limited infrastructure delivery capabilities and resources. The model also makes sense for hosters that are probably concerned with using email and collaboration tools to build relationships with customers and sell value-add on top.

*Disclosure: Open-Xchange is a Structure Research subscriber.

avatar Rafael Laguna, CEO, Open-Xchange

Can WebRTC defeat the OTT?

Fixed line telecom and cable providers have been faced with the problem of being a ‘dumb pipe’ for some time now, while mobile carriers have seen profit margins grow. But in an age of 4G LTE connections, mobile operators are now experiencing the same set of problems of fixed-line providers – OTT services can now be offered to a high enough standard to eat into the profits of the core voice product.

3G connections facilitated OTT short messaging apps like WhatsApp, which almost singlehandedly killed the SMS cash cow. OTT talk and video services such as Skype and Viber are now having a same effect with 4G connections, particularly in terms of devouring the market share for long distance and international calls.

Previous attempts by carriers at combatting these OTT services have failed because they relied on the use of native applications and proprietary protocols. Why would customers use an app that would only allow them to contact other people on the same network when there is already a service that anyone can access regardless of network?

WebRTC is different in that it is built on open protocols and APIs and can run in the browser – there is no need to download and install another app to run it. Depending on how the WebRTC deployment is configured, the person you wish to communicate to won’t need an app or an account to speak with you – all that is required is a link for WebRTC to open in their browser. This makes WebRTC more open and accessible than even the most widely used OTT voice and video apps and services.

The potential of WebRTC as a unified communications (UC) platform is enormous. It can easily be integrated by carriers into new or existing customer cloud services to add further value, potentially create new revenue streams or to simply offer an alternative to OTT services. Above all, it offers choice to operators and the ability to add innovative new services on top of their existing offerings, without the need to replace an entire communications ecosystem.

For WebRTC to succeed, all – or at least a majority of operators – need to embrace the open standards that it is built around. Without cooperation or standardisation, carriers will inevitably develop siloed apps or services that will offer customers no incentive to move off the OTT services in the long run.

4G mobile connections are still very much in the minority, so the battle hasn’t been lost yet. 3G OTT voice and video is still too flaky for users to have totally abandoned the core voice product, so carriers still have some time to combat the growth to offer an alternative.

Our newest product, OX Messenger, built on the WebRTC framework from Voiceworks, is a good example of a UC solution built on open standards. Using standards such as SIP, XMPP and WebRTC, OX Messenger works in most browsers without requiring any plugins. Additionally, because of the use of SIP, OX Messenger can integrate with existing PBX and UC systems in the customers premise, allowing the customer to pick up and answer regular PBX voice and video calls straight from OX App Suite.

OX Messenger is scheduled to be launched at our next annual customer and partner conference, OX Summit, in Munich on September 18. Don´t miss this opportunity and learn how to provide the next level of Cloud services with an open and trusted partner ecosystem.

avatar Jon McCarrick

South Beach Is Hot With All NEW OX Products to Demo

I know you are looking forward to Miami as much as I am.  It looks like HostingCon is going to have some really fun events and I hear lots of exciting news getting ready to come out at the show. I know that Open-Xchange is going to be sharing some cool new stuff.

Join us to hear Bob Krulcik´s keynote “Four Commandments for Trusted Cloud Services” at 9:00 am on June 18.

Come discover – at the OX booth (#736)– the new products and opportunity that our customer engagement portal is providing to hosting and cloud providers. OX App Suite is the unified communication, collaboration and productivity core Apps that providers are using to white-label, extend and massively scale their cloud-based portfolios and revenues.

In fact, we will be showing:

UPDATED- OX App Suite- HTML 5 based user interface for use on all devices including tablets has been updated for even easier use.

NEW!!! OX Spreadsheet- Our second cloud office app from the former Open Office Team after our OX Text product last year

NEW!!! OX Messenger- Add presence indicators, chat, voice and video conferencing to our already world class communications suite.

NEW!!! OX Guard- Add encryption to SMB email and file storage that anyone can use to keep snooping noses out.

NEW!!! APS 2 Module- Put OX App Suite right into your Parallels Automation interface

If you would like to schedule a meeting to get your own personal walk through, email me at jonathan.mccarrick AT open-xchange.com

Jon McCarrick, Director of Hosting Evangelism