The Big Question For IBM's WebDialog Acquisition

Burning up the Internet waves is the acquisition of Web conferencing and Skype Extras supplies, WebDialogs, for an undisclosed sum. You can read the press release here and there Reuters report here.

Burning up the Internet waves is the acquisition of Web conferencing and Skype Extras supplies, WebDialogs, for an undisclosed sum. You can read the press release here and there Reuters report here.

The move is good news for WebDialogs and for IBM. On the WebDialogs side, they gain. IBM''s resources and expertise, which will be needed to compete with the likes of Cisco (WebEx) and Citrix (GoToMeeting and GoToWebinar). More than just a low-end Web conferencing solution, IBM acquires one of the premier Skype partners in the industry.

Read about WebDialogs' pioneering experience workiing with the Skype Developers Program here. (Thank you Andy for that link.)

Burton's Mke Gotta raises some interesting questions on his blog about the acquisition and whether or not IBM will integrate its federate presence and IM information with Skype.

"IBM needs to do this," he writes, "and I believe it will happen. Skype is hugely popular and this type of interoperability would further differentiate IBM from Microsoft (re: IBM's federation with Google/XMPP). I'm not sure that eBay/Skype will get all that closer to IBM though but the technical interop makes sense....."

The technical interop has long made sense, but Skype has studiously avoided federating with other services in the past. Given the recent failure of the Skype network, businesses may be even be more gun shy around the network.