July 2012

Current State of Telecommunications

Current State of Telecommunications

An Interview with Dave Covert, NetworkStore

We’re talking to Dave Covert from NetworkStore about the current state of telecommunications and how NetworkStore is positioned to handle all the new technology on the horizon.

In the age of bring your own device how are manufacturers keeping up with all the new innovation and is the sky the limit?
One of the people that I follow on twitter is Robert Metcalfe. He basically invented Ethernet and started a company called 3Com. IPv4 was the standard of IP devices and it could provide let’s say 500 million IP addresses. Now the innovation of IPv6 will make IP addresses exponential. If IPv4 was the size of a golf ball then IPv6 is the size of the Sun. Basically everything we use in everyday life will get an IP address. I don’t see any limit; it will only get bigger and as things like the Smart Home and new technologies start to take off you will need more of those IP addresses. Bottom line is it’s all run on Ethernet. To answer the question specifically, no I don’t see any limit, especially when you see things like light switches and other everyday items coming out with IP addresses enabled. You can already operate devices in the home with your smartphone. I don’t see it slowing down at all.

What do you think about Unified Communications and The Cloud, where it’s going and how does NetworkStore have a presence with it?
What you see is UC will eliminate the need for a phone on your desk. The $500 phone on my desk will disappear. Unified Communications is really going to take away the need to have that equipment. That equipment will eventually go away and it will be displaced by everyone having ear buds.

Cloud Computing is different than what you’re doing on your traditional local area network (or whatever you may have) by storing data on a server in house. Traditionally you could have a DR (disaster recovery) site in another city where you have a pipe between this data center and that data center. You store all the data in the DR site too just in case your building was to suffer some extreme disaster. Remember, information is the value of business. All you’re doing with cloud computing is getting rid of those 2 data centers and you’re letting someone else do it for. You’re letting somebody else store all of your information. You’re keeping it out there in The Cloud. What it also does is it makes it so you don’t have to go out and purchase software for applications your business needs. All you need is a login and a password to access applications like SalesForce, etc. I don’t have to worry about programming issues and I don’t have to worry about anything crashing. As long as I have an Internet connection I’m able to access all of my information anyplace in the world on my smartphone or my hotel room or wherever I may be.

NetworkStore is sitting in the right position to be able to help customers as they go to The Cloud because a lot of what they need is a bigger data pipe. Increased hosted cloud solutions means they may need more T-1 modules for routing to the cloud and so on. At some point, customers need to replace equipment and NetworkStore is there to help them as they migrate to new technology as well as help them dispose of displaced equipment. As The Cloud grows and data centers get bigger, there’s always going to be equipment coming in and out. NetworkStore is able to supply it and we’re able to buy it back.

Dave is there a company out there right now that you think is offering something really innovative in the hardware market?
One of the companies I currently look at is Meru Wireless. Their strategy is to provide connectivity across the enterprise via wireless technology, virtually eliminating the wired aspect of desktop computing, etc. I see them growing, they’re out there hiring people at an accelerated rate simply because this is where communications is all going. For example, every time XYZ school system comes back from holiday break or whatever it might be there is another thousand devices that need to hook up to a wireless network. You have all these kids walking in with their iPhones, iPods and tablets and your wireless network will have to be scalable. With the innovation of IPv6 there is going to be an infinite number of IP addresses that will be available. Everything will require an IP address and wireless is going to be the kind of thing that draws a lot of that connectivity so that’s absolutely one of the companies I’m looking at.

Where does a company like Meru fit with NetworkStore?
NetworkStore is able to supply hardware, both new and used, as well as provide maintenance service on it. We also offer cash or credit for whatever equipment is being displaced. For example, most of the products being sold now in the wireless space are 802.11N products, which are rapidly taking the place of A/B/G product. By offering trade in credit for A/B/G product when purchasing N-Standard product, we are able to assist customers that aren’t early adopters of N, or who don’t have the capital to upgrade at this time.

With all of these advances in technology where is NetworkStore a year from now?
I hope to see us in a dramatically different place with our business. Currently there is a lot of Legacy equipment that we’re selling. More candidly some of these manufacturers like HP, Cisco, and Juniper are rolling out hardware at an accelerated rate because they want to keep selling new models. At NetworkStore we will be able to extend the lifecycle of all this equipment. We know a data switch is made to last and operate around 7 to 10 years without shutting it off. One of the things that we are great at is helping companies extend the lifecycle of their equipment. We are able to keep them with the equipment they currently have.

NetworkStore is an industry leader in buying, refurbishing and selling pre-owned network equipment including Cisco, Nortel/Avaya and Polycom. NetworkStore has $50 million in on-hand inventory, making us one of the nation’s largest resellers of used and new Cisco and Nortel/Avaya data and telephony equipment. They can be contacted at www.NetworkStore.com.