Real Time Communications Featured Article

GM Roy Timor-Rousso Talks Kandy and fring: From A to Z

October 08, 2014

Delivering customers what they need to succeed is key for most leading companies today. When GENBAND, a developer of multimedia and cloud communications solutions, realized the OTT mobile IP communications services being provided by fring would help its service provider customers succeed, it stepped up and purchased the company.

Now, one year later, and with introduction of GENBAND Kandy to the world, there’s even more room for success.

fring started off as a consumer brand offering free mobile VoIP on devices about seven years ago and then, two years ago was converted from a consumer brand, to a telecom OTT enabler.

Behind this change was CEO Roy Timor-Rousso, who said in a recent interview that it was in fact the catalyst with which the company became acquired by GENBAND.

Roy is now the general manager for Kandy and fring and recently chatted with Real Time Communications World about the ways Kandy and fring work together.

In his role, Roy is responsible for not only strategizing and delivering the service and product offering, but also bringing it from A to Z – which includes positioning the product and working with outbound channels of customers as well as inbound with various departments in the organization.

Kandy is a cloud-based telecom OTT solution recently released by GENBAND to provide real-time communications capabilities for enterprises, services providers, and developers.

To sum it up, Roy said Kandy is, in a nutshell, “taking GENABND’s core real time communications assets into the cloud and breaking them down in to Lego-like blocks which enables developers and service providers to pick and choose the features and services they want.”

So how do they relate? “Kandy and fring are one because our team is deploying Kandy and at the same time starting to migrate the entire fring offering on top of the Kandy APIs and SDKs,” Roy explained. “So, in a few months, effectively, we will be using the Kandy APIs and SDKs to operate the fring services and the fring brand.”

“If you think about it,” he continued, “fring is the engine that is driving Kandy forward and we're utilizing the word engine because the fring development team, the fring operation team, the fring DNA – which is a cloud, OTT, application DNA, is the entity within GENBAND that materializes the concept of Kandy into an actual product and service.”

But that doesn’t mean all of GENBAND’s assets are within the fring realm. So they are still interfacing and integrating into different parts of the GENBAND organization Roy said. This way they can leverage the capabilities, features and assets, and bring them into the Kandy SDK offering.

Moving into the development and delivery topic, Roy explained that while Kandy by design is able to operate on pretty much any cloud, the company chose to start with Amazon because of its world-wide deployment, redundancy, capability and business model. While it’s not limited to only AWS, Roy said, and even though it made the most sense, the company will still comply with any strategic customers who have other needs.

Speaking about the successful launch and development of products like Kandy, Roy noted that they are working in an agile sprint mode where every four weeks or so they are dashing into a new sprint. That is designed to encapsulate both the product requirements roadmap as well as feedback from customers and enables them to react aggressively, and in a positive way to the business, market and user needs. This is a combination of more traditional telecom methodologies and is still new to GENBAND but something that will be reviewed periodically and adapted as needed.

What’s most important though, in today’s software development market when it comes to a ‘winning’ product strategy, is management. Like most everything in life, Roy noted, having the right management and team of people and attitude, can make it possible to achieve a lot.

The starts with clarity of mission Roy said and what needs to be done to achieve the end goal.

The team should also be professional and have integrity to not only deliver but also say what is not working and what should change. Part of this also includes the humility to learn from the competition Roy said.

“Do not to be shy to say a competitor is amazing and use that to think about how you can have the same or something better. You have to be proud of what you do.  Bringing all of this together is very close to a start-up mentality and what is very unique is you can experience the maturity and then have enough mileage under the hood  that will make whatever you do easier and more credible.”

Now that Kandy has been released, it will be interesting to see how this vision and strategy plays out and how service providers and developers use real-time communications.

In fact, Roy noted that within months we should see many new capabilities that in theory one wouldn’t think are part of real time communications – like IoT, wearable devices and clothing, etc. where the Kandy approach will be valuable.

Edited by Alisen Downey

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