eBay-Skype: Three VoIP entrepreueur views

I thought it would be interesting to gather some views of the eBay acquisition of Skype held by a few informed figures in the VoIP community that other sources might not necessarily gather in one place.Here then, is a sampling:Bryan Martin, CEO of Packet 8 maker 8x8 writes in his blog:(The eBay-Skype) "news embodies what I believe will be a significant future trend in VoIP technologies.

I thought it would be interesting to gather some views of the eBay acquisition of Skype held by a few informed figures in the VoIP community that other sources might not necessarily gather in one place.

Here then, is a sampling:

Bryan Martin, CEO of Packet 8 maker 8x8 writes in his blog:

(The eBay-Skype) "news embodies what I believe will be a significant future trend in VoIP technologies.  While voice and video in and of themselves are applications that can be enhanced in significant ways through the use of IP, there is also an inevitable trend towards using VoIP as a component, or building block, in other applications. 

EBAY clearly believes that their current services will benefit from adding a voice component to the auction & sale process.  I can envision many other applications, some IP and some not, that will also benefit from this "building block" approach to application enhancement and service development.  Voice, video and business services are all powerful blocks that can be used to build new, better and bigger services, whether they stand on their own, or are part of the foundation of something new and different.

VoIP pioneer and Pulver.com chair Jeff Pulver writes in his blog:

"Until today, we looked at building communications networks and applications differently. Telcos never were the developers of applications – frankly, developing applications is not the telcos’ strong suit. Innovation happens at the edge. Now we have an example of how communications will be swallowed by the edge. eBay, because it comes from a place where it knows about community, how to build community, and how to enable end-users within its community probably knows how to harness the products and services that Skype’s technology will enable.

"Unlike traditional voice communications providers, eBay gets the concept of community and community building. Adding a rich IP-based communications capability -- including IM, voice and presence applications -- to its community should dramatically enhance the value of and services available to eBay’s community."

A contrarian note, however, is sounded by Michael Robertson, CEO of SIPphone, which makes the Skype-rival Gizmo Project softphone.

Robertson tells Engadget:

"eBay buying Skype is great to raise the awareness for VoIP, but both companies have closed directories and APIs that only let people access data on the periphery. Both of their “open-platform” initiatives are highly restrictive and do not promote the best experience for the user.

"The world does not want a closed commerce and communication experience owned by eBay. The world wants a product that can call anyone, anywhere without paying a toll to a gatekeeper. Only time will tell if eBay chooses to truly open Skype up to the world, but I’m not holding my breath."