Andy believes that advanced Internet applications are necessary to push the IP Telephony space beyond 1.0 to a type of 2.0 world.
True, there will always be users who only want cheap calls. But since cheap Internet-based calling is, I believe, on an unstoppable trajectory toward free calling, the competition is- and will continue to be- shifting from calling costs to calling features.
The premise of this is that your 1.0 phones and networks are OK to make and receive calls, but what you can do with those calls, and the information derived from patterns associated with those calls, is really what is going to matter.
In other words, it isn't just about putting up a friendly softphone GUI, signing up as many users as you can, and then try to make money in the ultra-competitive, transitioning-to-free phone call space.
It's about features such as Sightspeed's video conferencing (shown above), iotum's collaboration-enhancing Relevance Engine to be deployed soon with AIM Phone LIne, WebDialogs' Unyte platform for web conferencing over Skype, and the enhanced calling organization features of GrandCentral.
"What this means is you don't need to throw away the old to have the new," Andy writes. "With a little imagination the old and new can coexist and make for a better phone world.