Will GoIP (Google's VoIP) make the telcos gulp?

Will GoIP (Google's VoIP) make the telcos gulp?

Summary: OK, I made "GoIP" up. Before a rumor gets started, there's no such thing as a Voice over IP offering (VoIP) from Google called GoIP (Googlevoice over IP).

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TOPICS: Unified Comms
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goipOK, I made "GoIP" up. Before a rumor gets started, there's no such thing as a Voice over IP offering (VoIP) from Google called GoIP (Googlevoice over IP). But that doesn't mean there won't be. This week, while at the Spring 2005 Voice on the Net conference (VON 2005), Google execs were apparently holding closed room discussions with several Net telephone service providers. The News.com report by Ben Charny characterized the activity as window shopping. News of Google's interest in Net telephony comes within 24 hours of AOL having announced at the same conference that it will be launching an Net telephone service within the month -- one that involves the connection of an ordinary handset (if you can really call it that) to a broadband connection.

So far, the major telcos have survived the VoIP revolution. But once Google, AOL, and other 800-lb. gorilla ISPs get into the game, my sense is that a rapid and total restructuring of the entire telecom industry -- an industry that already has had its fair share of restructuring -- is not far behind.

Lobbyists for the telecommunications industry will probably intensify their efforts to seek regulations and taxes to keep the massive erosion of their clients' businesses at bay, but such resistance is futile. Once VoIP has these big guns behind it, those lobby efforts could be easily neutralized by some equally financed counter-lobbying.

Resisting the weight of VoIP is like resisting gravity. In the course of doing my podcast interviews, where I must dial my guests into the recording, I have raked up hours and hours of VoIP minutes to make Skype-to-landline calls and it never ceases to amaze me at how slowly -- at the rate of 2.3 cents per minute for calls to the U.S. and the U.K. -- my Skype credit gets depleted. Skype-to-Skype calls are free. My wife was complaining the other day how our phone company (Verizon) sent out a note that it was jacking up the rates to call home to Europe, to which I said "just go use my podcasting studio and Skype them."

You know how your cell phone has the name of some cellco on it right now? Is it Verizon? Cingular? Sprint? Somewhere, in the not-too-distant future, our stationary and mobile handsets will have the colorful Google logo on them. In fact, it will be in a little exterior display and the logo will change by virtue of a Web services XML-RPC call when the logo on Google's home page changes. Wrapped into the handsets, the same way that Windows comes with technologies like MSN and a Media Player built-in (and people complain about it), will be direct access to all of Google's many online services from search to blogging to photosharing to shopping to e-mail to a music sales. Oh yeah, and voice and video calls. That day will come and it'll probably be sooner than you think.

Topic: Unified Comms

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9 comments
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  • Who cares

    With most mobile phones including long distance, VoIP will be dead before it starts. Most people I know don't even have home phones anymore.
    rengag40
    • What really makes VoIP Appealing

      For example, you can get a plan for calling overseas for free, or have a phone numnber from another country (for example, if you do business with a spanish company, wouldn't it be nice if you had a Madrid phone number?
      Or, on the other hand, wouldn't it be nice if they had a 469 TX number for you to call them from your cellphone, or wherever?

      Another real use for Voip is that of people travelling on business or pleasure overseas, and being able to take their phone number with them. The problem with taking your cellphone overseas is that it is outrageously expensive. instead, you can leave your cellphone back at your place, and have calls forwarded to your voip service phone number.
      SantiagoCrespo
  • VoIP

    I can just hope that some company somewhere steps on the major players in the telecommunication industries. I would be willing to pay $10.00 per month to call anybdy anywhere in the world and talk as long as I want. Till then I will just be without a phone.
    rhammock
  • GoIP

    I believe if Google can match their awesome clean & no frills interface with Vonage's (or Zipglobal's or whoever's) calling rates, it will be a killer.

    Iam a VoIP user myself, (bought it from a TX startup called USAfon.com) and have come to enjoy having an actual US phone number in South America, plus calling europe is only 1 cent per minute.
    Since Verizon is offering DSL without a phone line, I don't know why aren't there more people migrating completely out of PSTN and into VoIP
    SantiagoCrespo
  • Enjoy cheap VoIP while you can

    There's no such thing as a free lunch, on the Internet or anywhere else. VoIP is cheap now because the bad, nasty ol' telcos spent the billions required to install and maintain the infrastructure that makes the entire world-wide IP network possible. If their profit margins get slim enough, they'll start cutting back on the infrastructure costs. Who's going to maintain said infrastructure when that happens?

    Not Google, that's for damn sure.
    the_doge
    • I am amazed

      Enjoy cheap VoIP while you can
      There's no such thing as a free lunch, on the Internet or anywhere else. VoIP is cheap now because the bad, nasty ol' telcos spent the billions required to install and maintain the infrastructure that makes the entire world-wide IP network possible. If their profit margins get slim enough, they'll start cutting back on the infrastructure costs. Who's going to maintain said infrastructure when that happens?

      Not Google, that's for damn sure.

      You mean to tell me that you?re the only smart poster in the bunch.
      I am amazed at the amount of people that think everything just appears out of thin air.
      I hope the phone companies take advantage their infrastructure and make a killing.
      Pay me now or pay me later.
      thirstydog@...
      • VOIP

        I think thirsty dog is correct
        fkfred
  • Xten Delivers PC-to-PC VoIP in New Yahoo! Messenger

    eyeBeam SDK Licensed to Enhance PC-to-PC VoIP in Instant Messaging

    Xten Networks, Inc. announced today that Yahoo!, a leading global Internet company, has licensed Xten's eyeBeam software development kit (SDK) to deliver SIP-based PC-to-PC VoIP in the new Yahoo!? Messenger Beta (http://messenger.yahoo.com).

    "We are extremely pleased that Yahoo! chose Xten for this project," commented Erik Lagerway, COO and President for Xten. "The excellent call quality with Yahoo! Messenger's PC-to-PC calling feature is a direct result of the combined efforts of our engineering teams."

    "Providing a high-quality instant messaging service is our number one priority, which is why we choose to work with Xten Networks, the best-of-breed standards-based voice engine provider, to ensure our users have an exceptional PC-to-PC calling experience," stated Frazier Miller, director of Yahoo! Messenger.

    http://sipthat.com
    ErikLagerway
  • RE: Will GoIP (Google's VoIP) make the telecos gulp?

    More than 3 *YEARS* later... where is the
    google voip????
    HelpMeNow