Profile of Paul Korzeniowski
News & Commentary Posts: 313
Paul Korzeniowski is a freelance contributor to InformationWeek who has been examining IT issues for more than two decades. During his career, he has had more than 10,000 articles and 1 million words published. His work has appeared in the Boston Herald, Business 2.0, eSchoolNews, Entrepreneur, Investor's Business Daily, and Newsweek, among other publications. He has expertise in analytics, mobility, cloud computing, security, and videoconferencing. Paul is based in Sudbury, Mass., and can be reached at [email protected]
Articles by Paul Korzeniowski
Open spaces, water cooler talk, and allowing employees to update Facebook are often more effective in creating a collaborative workplace than all the team-building exercises your consultants can dream up. Here's a look at what works in the real world.
A movement known as Ban The Box aims to have questions about criminal convictions removed from employment applications. The effort has led to regulations in 19 states and more than 100 cities and counties. Here's what you need to know.
Software negotiations often pit a customer against a supplier, each focused on his or her own best interests. To craft a sound deal, CIOs need to understand where potential contract potholes lie and steer around them. Here's what you need to know.
Insider threats run rampant, and cloud customers often find it difficult to pull back the veil and see what their supplier is doing with their data.
Microsoft's Surface tablets are bucking overall market trends by meeting enterprise needs, even as Apple iPad and Google Android-based tablets continue to fight for market share. Here's why CIOs and other IT leaders are embracing the Microsoft mobile devices.
CIOs need to rethink traditional cost justifications when making investments in big data projects.
These low-cost, Web-based devices are wedging themselves into the crowded device list for enterprise end-users. Here's what IT needs to know.
Businesses need to develop new security responses to address gigantic attacks, and the CIO is in the best position to lead the way.
A cell phone functioning as a credit card is a well known concept in South Korea and Japan. Now, it appears that the idea is about to change the way that U.S. consumers buy products.
Customers want their interactions with your company to be swift and easy. In response, EasyAsk developed a version of its natural language search and analysis software for the SugarCRM, Customer Relationship Management (CRM) solution.
Google Android systems have become the most popular smartphone platform, according to recent market research reports. Consequently, small and medium businesses need tools to manage those systems, and Webroot became the latest vendor to try to address that need.
Advances are coming fast and furious in the Unified Communications (UC) marketplace. Trying to keep pace with competitors, Mitel announced the Mitel 5000 Communications Platform (5000 CP) version 5.0.
Increasingly, many small and medium businesses are relying on Unified Communications (UC) systems to support their core business functions. Consequently, Zultys Inc. improved the desktop video, mobility, connectivity to Microsoft applications, and integration with Salesforce.com features available with its MX UC solution.
With IT applications now integral to business processes, small and medium companies can no longer tolerate performance bottlenecks or system downtime. To help firms pinpoint problem spots, Netoptics announced an integrated network and application monitoring appliance.
Cisco, Netgear, TP-Link, and Aruba increased their chances for long term survival in the wireless LAN market, according to figures released by market research firm In-Stat. On the other hand, Linksys and Technicolor would like to forget 2010.
Video conferencing capabilities, greater scalability, a more open architecture, and an improved user interface are the highlights in the Mitel Unified Communicator (UC) Advanced 4.0 solution.
The phone rings while you are speeding down the highway at 50 mph. Answering the call can be difficult and even illegal in some cases, such as returning a text. In response to such scenarios, iSpeech developed DriveSafe.ly, which now runs on the Apple iPhone.
With networks becoming more complex, small and medium businesses are finding it more difficult to understand how their applications are performing. In response, Correlsense, a supplier of monitoring solutions, enhanced its SharePath RUM line.
Smartphones have become key extensions to business communications systems. In response, 8x8 Inc., a hosted communications provider, added an Android application to its repertoire.
Monitoring tools typically arrive after a technology has begun to take root. With cloud computing gaining so much buzz recently, Keynote Systems threw its hat into the cloud application performance monitoring arena.
After years of talk, the move from IPv4 to IPv6 has finally begun to gain some momentum. While the evolution promises to relieve the Internet of potential addressing problems, it may create some management challenges for businesses. In response, SolarWinds has developed a new management module.
The benefits of HD video are often obvious to see. RHUB Communications, Inc. hopes that is also the case with Hi-Definition voice capabilities, which have been added to its TurboMeeting Web conferencing solution.
Mobile communications have become a prime option for executives. In response, Siemens Enterprise Communications expanded the mobile features of its OpenScape Office Unified Communications suite.
As they try to keep the company network functioning, IT technicians often move from place to place. Because many now carry smartphones, Spiceworks designed an iPhone application that helps them keep tabs on their networks and communicate with their coworkers.
Meraki has carved out a growing niche by offering businesses cloud based wireless network services. To maintain its momentum, the vendor added three items to its product line.
Movement from traditional to IP telephony services has been taking place for several years. A leader in traditional voice services, Virtual PBX has now broadened its offerings, so they work better with IP.
Sending and receiving information on wireless networks has been impossible to date because of their design. However, that could change because of the work of three graduate students at Stanford University.
Corporate use of video conferencing systems is on the rise. To widen its market niche, LifeSize enhanced its solution, with the highlight being support for HD content on mobile devices, such as the Apple iPhone and iPad.
Application stores have become all the rage in the mobile handset market. Rather than acquiesce all of the power to Apple, a group of telecommunications services providers have forged a different approach, the Wholesale Applications Community (WAC).
Since the turn of the millennium, open interfaces and support for industry standards have been the norm in all industries, except for video conferencing. But that is changing as Polycom has decided to support a Cisco Systems Inc. telepresence interface.
The thirst for faster speeds in IT is never ending. Consequently, wireless LAN suppliers are trying to boost the top speed of their devices from a few hundred M bps to 1G bps, a quest that market research firm In-Stat expects will be quite successful.
Cox Business has teamed with Cisco Systems Inc. to deliver managed IP PBX services to businesses with less than 100 employees.
Individuals seem to understand the potential problems that could arise if their wireless connections are compromised; however, many still are not taking all the steps necessary to secure their information, according to a survey conducted for the Wi-Fi Alliance.
Faster, faster, and even faster, that is the expectation among IT users. In response, Paessler boosted the performance of PRTG, its network monitoring solution, by 300 percent.
Does your company have a plan to support employees who are using various mobile VoIP services? If not, it better start designing one because the technology is accelerating into the mainstream.
Since the introduction of the Apple iPad, interest in tablet systems has increased. In fact in the last three months, AnythingIT.com, a website that tracks IT system disposals, has seen a 62 percent increase nationwide in businesses dumping their laptops.
A growing number of businesses are deploying cloud services – especially private clouds, according to research conducted by Osterman Research and Electric Cloud. However, a majority of companies report that these services are underutilized.
Many vendors try to revolutionize the IT industry. Apple is one who has done it: the company recently celebrated the 10 billionth download at its App Store.
Why is this application running sooooo slowly? Because small and medium businesses do not want to hear that lament from their users, SolarWinds unveiled a stand alone application performance monitor and purchased a virtualization monitoring company.
Virtualization has become a popular way for small and medium businesses to efficiently use their computing resources. Consequently, ManageEngine added Microsoft Hyper-V support to its management solution.
Cloud computing has become all the rage recently. In response, Aerohive Networks, a wireless LAN supplier, acquired privately-held Pareto Networks, which had developed Network as a Service (NaaS) offerings.
Meraki has carved out a viable business by delivering cloud based wireless network products, so the vendor is now extending its reach into the wired network equipment marketplace.
Surprise, surprise, Verizon is expected to announce that it too has become a reseller of the popular Apple iPhone. In addition to providing more choices for businesses, the announcement could foreshadow dramatic changes in smartphone pricing.
Small and medium businesses often do not have the physical real estate needed to deploy enterprise class networking products. In response, Cisco shrunk the size of two of its popular switches, so they now fit in constrained environments.
Competition in the wireless access market has intensified as it has matured. To try and maintain its current momentum, NetGear rolled out four devices, with an emphasis on support for higher transmission speeds and a wider variety of connectivity options.
Since 1994, Bluetooth has provided users with a simple way to send information over short distance, wireless connections. However, the standard's future could be usurped, according to market research firm In-Stat.
Managing data center resources has never been easy for small and medium businesses. DirectPointe, a nationwide provider of managed IT services, has taken to the clouds to deliver a new monitoring solution
What will the new year bring? Less of a focus on 4G services, browser based application stores, and at least one industry stalwart exiting the market were predictions from inCode, Ericsson's professional services division.
Cell phones have become more than an executive productivity tool. They are now a primary way that individuals purchase goods and services, according to market research firm ABI Research.
Data transmissions are gaining popularity and straining many carriers' networks. Wi-Fi has emerged as a way to offload traffic and alleviate congestion, and Cisco and T-Mobile have teamed up to ensure that such transmissions flow seamlessly.
Increasingly, security functions have been integrated into the corporate network layer. In response, ADTRAN unveiled its first suite of Unified Threat Management (UTM) appliances.
Time to market has become a key consideration when businesses deploy new applications. In response, Bitrix has developed an ecommerce solution that can be up and running in less than one hour.
While it does not grab the headlines that it did at the turn of the millennium, demand for IP bandwidth and services continues to rise at lofty rates. Market research firm TeleGeography determined that carriers added 13.2T bps of new capacity to their networks in 2010, a 55% increase from the previous year's level.
The latest step in the Unified Communications (UC) market is to empower users, so they can hold Web and video conferences. Siemens Enterprise Communications added that component to its product line by acquiring FastViewer GmbH & Co., a Neumarkt, Germany collaboration software supplier.
The new year is not going to be kind to many high tech suppliers. Slow growth and intense competition will force many vendors to either be acquired or close up shop, according to market research firm In-Stat.
"For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction," Sir Isaac Newton's observation is evident in the mobile communications marketplace. Data services have been quite popular, but carriers are under duress to deliver sufficient bandwidth to support such connections.
Skype has been steadily making its way from a consumer to a small and medium business communications service. Consequently, add-ons, such as ClearOne's CHATAttach 160 speakerphone, have begun to sprout up.
Drive to the mall or shop from home? A growing number of buyers opted for the latter on Black Friday, underscoring the need for retailers to develop a strong online presence.
Faster networks have been an ongoing desire among small and medium businesses since the days of 50K bps modems. Trying to gain the high ground in the never ending speed war, Verizon boosted its top speed to 150M bps.
Competition has been intensifying in the cloud communications services marketplace. In response, Cloudnet has announced a promotion where customers receive free Voice over IP (VoIP) handsets.
Having trouble sorting all of the information in your In Box? Oasys Software's Mail Manager, which is designed to help individuals manage such data, now provides them with a way to capture screen data.
Unified communications (UC) hardware (basically IP PBXes) has become a losing proposition for suppliers as hardware has become commoditized. In response, Mitel continued its evolution away from hardware to becoming a software supplier with a series of announcements, including a cloud UC service.
Wireless networks are becoming smaller, more powerful, and less expensive. In order to keep pace with competitors, Meraki announced two 802.11n wireless access points.
As businesses extend the reach of their applications to customers and suppliers, pinpointing problems becomes more difficult. AppFirst is trying to make its mark in the application performance monitoring space with a free server monitoring tool.
Typically, vendors introduce new capabilities and only later do products capable of monitoring their performance arise. Now with SaaS services becoming so popular, Streamcore has enhanced its management tool, so it provides visibility into those applications.
Telepresence has been making its way down the technology ladder, with system pricing dropping and its customer base expanding. Those market dynamics enticed XVD Corp. to develop a new system for SMBs.
Corporations have been moving information from the premises to the cloud. As they make that transition, small and medium businesses want to ensure that only authorized individuals access their content, a need that start up Gogobeans is trying to address.
Significant growth in data transmissions is expected to force cellular network providers to make massive investments in network upgrades, according to market research firm In-Stat. The emerging requirements could stretch their pocketbooks as well as their network capacity.
Many IT markets have been caught in the doldrums recently, however, cell phones are riding high. Market research firm International Data Corp. found sales grew by 14.6% in the third quarter of 2010, the fourth consecutive period of double-digit growth.
Competition has intensified in the network switch market. In order to protect its position in the data center, Extreme Networks unveiled a new fixed Ethernet switch family that offers customers more capacity as well as longer distance transmissions than previous systems.
More is better seems to the axiom in the Unified Communications (UC) market, In response, BroadSoft enhanced its services with instant messaging, video, and Web collaboration features.
The number and size of video conferences that businesses are holding has been growing. In response, LifeSize announced a new 16 port conferencing bridge that promises to deliver HD quality images to participants.
Competition in the telepresence market has been intense as more companies look to the technology to streamline business processes and improve productivity. Vu Telepresence has become the latest vendor trying to grab a piece of that market.
In today's highly competitive, widely connected world, more than 2 billion calls will be placed from Wi-Fi hotspots this year, and that number is expected to grow to 11 billion in 2014, according to market research firm In-Stat.
The acquisition of 3Com had propelled HP into the number two spot in the Ethernet switch market, according to market research firm In-Stat. In addition, the market is constricting so a handful of vendors account for virtually all of the revenue.
Recently, smartphone vendors have been enhancing their devices' video capabilities, but Juniper Research projects that only a small percentage of users will take advantage of the new functionality.
A picture is worth a thousand words. GroudWork Open Source has incorporated that basic tenet into the latest release of its flagship product GroundWork Monitor 6.3.
High resolution video has been making its way from the enterprise down to the small and medium business market sector. As evidence of this shift, Citrix announced HDFaces, which works with its GoToMeeting, GoToWebinar, and GoToTraining Web conferencing services.
Do you work outside a lot? Are you concerned about how well your smartphone can stand up to Mother Nature? If so, AT&T might have a product that interests you.
Mobility has become the watchword in corporations. As employees work with a growing variety of handheld devices, such as smartphones, tablets, and netbooks, companies need to put the proper network infrastructure in place to support such connections. Cisco has tried to address such issues by upgrading its Borderless Network Architecture.
Two of the leading voice communications suppliers, Avaya and Skype, have teamed up to offer small and medium businesses more calling options. The partnership has potential but may not be a panacea for companies searching for more effective voice communications systems.
Traditionally, network management tools have been complex, expensive, and difficult to deploy. Paessler, a German based company, has been one of the suppliers trying to address those limitations and unveiled a new release of its PRTG Network Monitor.
The use of video conferencing services has been on the rise. In response, Nefsis, whose focus is on small and medium businesses, has developed a free service one-to-one video conferencing service.
Recently, IT spending increases have been rare as black pearls in oysters. Well, that may soon be changing, according to a user survey conducted by Spiceworks.
Increasingly, employees are relying on smartphones to complete their work during the day. While this movement has increased productivity, it has also made it more difficult for companies to reach their target customers. Start up Adzookie.com is trying to fill that void.
Smartphones have been overrunning many small and medium businesses. Companies like the productivity functions that the devices offer but are not as content with their management functions. HP is working with cellular carriers to try and fill that void.
Increasingly, small and medium businesses are examining using social media tools to enhance their marketing efforts. Jive Software has enhanced its solution so it offers more robust integration with Facebook and smartphones.
Social networking tools, such Facebook, Twitter, et, al., have made a significant mark on how many software application are built. Consequently, Spiceworks has incorporated some of these products' design concepts in its network management and help desk system.
Have you ever completed an important call to a customer or coworker and needed to make sure what you gleaned from the conversation was what the person actually said? For those who find themselves in that position, VirtualPBX has enhanced its hosted services with an automatic recording function.
Hewlett-Packard Co. has emerged as one of the top IT suppliers to small and midsize businesses. To maintain that position, the company unveiled a suite of new networking, computer, and storage products - with many of the items focused on companies with 10 to 25 employees.
What's next with smartphones? Market research firm Juniper Research expects that vendors will add 3D functionality and switch to high end hardware features, such as dual core processors, in order to continue to drive interest high end smartphones.
While much attention is being paid to high end converged data center devices, many small and medium businesses still are searching for lower cost, higher performance network switches. In response, ADTRAN, which has been serving that market for 25 years, enhanced its 28-port Gigabit Ethernet switches, so they offer more bandwidth while reducing their size and power consumption.
Skype has been trying to branch out beyond its traditional consumer base and serve more small and medium businesses. As part of that strategy, the company rolled out Skype Connect, which enables companies to tie their Private Branch Exchange (PBX) or Unified Communications (UC) systems into Skype.
Late to the party. That may be an appropriate way to characterize Dell's push into the smartphone market. However, the company has some strong traits that may make its products a viable option for small and medium businesses.
Increasingly, companies are building applications that mix data, voice, and video communications. In response, AT&T has enhanced its virtual private network (VPN) service, so it now works with the firm's voice services as well as data offerings.
Taking note of the widespread success of Apple's iPad, Hewlett-Packard has become the latest vendor planning to deliver such a product line. The HP products may gain some traction among small and medium businesses, but their long term fate is unclear.
Ringio, one of many new players in the cloud voice market, enhanced its service by connecting it to PBX systems and improving its call routing features. The company is trying to differentiate itself in this highly competitive field by focusing on Interactive Voice Response (IVR) and Customer Relationship Management (CRM) functions.
Vendors catering to small and medium businesses' voice communications needs are becoming as common as dandelions in open fields. One new entrant, Bandwidth.com, which has been offering such services for a couple of months, enhanced its Phonebooth service by cutting pricing and adding new features.
Voice communications have rapidly evolved from delivering simple ring tones to sophisticated productivity tools. Many small and medium businesses have been having trouble keeping pace with the changes, so Intermedia is offering them some potential help via a hosted PBX service.
Increasingly, video conferencing has emerged as a way that business professionals collaborate. Since these exchanges can often occur on the fly, security has been a concern, one that Polycom and McAfee are trying to assuage.