It was time for me to head off to Asia with my family, and in the back of my mind one thought kept resonating (you’d think I would be worried about the usual things, do I have my passport, did we turn off the oven, did I bring the baby… err, that’s it, I forgot the baby!). No, actually what was running through my mind was how to maintain my business communications from the other end of the world.
I spend an awful lot of time connected to the phone, email, and IM, and while you’d think I’d try to relax a bit while out of the country, the withdrawals of being incommunicado would just be too painful. As many tech startup CEOs will confirm, there’s just never a good excuse to be unreachable. For me, the first line of communication is email. With it, I can keep my finger on the pulse of what’s happening, and get critical communications back to the company. And although email alone pretty much worked 10 years ago, at TelCentris (the company that built Voxox), my contacts expect so much more!
When I was traveling to Hong Kong, China, Thailand, and Singapore about 10 years ago, it was always an adventure finding a dialup connection to use in hotels. Today there’s usually wi-fi, although it is often grossly expensive and unreliable.
Back to 2009 — the first thing I did when I checked in was to buy a $50 wireless voucher card. That got me 30 hours of what turned out to be a horrific internet connection. Most of the time I had to wait an hour for my emails to send and then I’d turn the connection off to stop bleeding off the time I’d purchased. Naturally, while email was chugging along in the background at a snail’s pace, I had to try Voxox to make a call. I have to admit I was expecting the call quality over this terrible connection to be awful, but, when the call dialed, connected, and I was on the phone with full 2-way communications, I was surprised at how good it actually sounded. For me it was slightly crackly, but for the party on the other end, it was "perfect, crystal clear"!
And of course, while using Voxox to place this call (with my Bluetooth headset connected to my laptop, I should add), I was online and visible to all of my IM contacts. The instant messages started flying — ahhh, just like being at home…