Thursday, October 19, 2006

Another VoIP hype story

TheIndependent has a small article on fring's mobile VoIP service. I guess Nic Fildes like myself was at the Symbian Smartphone show at the start of the week and thought that this was the best PR spin he had all week.

Having worked for a few mobile VoIP start-ups I have to say that what stops most is that the Mobile Networks are finding way to offer ever increasing bundels which mean that you no longer need to find a way to cut costs. The tell tale sign that this is another technology solution that the market does not need is the opening paragraph that says it works on 3G handset. Take a look at the way such phones are sold and I would say it is almost impossible to use all of the minutes you had to buy in order to get the handset for free, so why do you wish to make free calls?

The last paragraph says that the company is considering generating revenues from advertising; this is just such a winner! So because I am a cheapskate and want to save money on my phone bill, I need to buy the latest handset and then accept spam to fund my free calls. Guess I should get over to the companies VCs because it looks like they might just need someone capable of adding sense to the due dilligence process.

1 comment:

bz said...

You are right, saving money on mobile calls using VoIP technology is not going to last.
However, you may look at fring mobile-VoIP as a social-communication application that brings presence data, chat and voice into a unified domain.
In this respect, it is similar to Skype role in the communication market, people are using it even though thwir wireline fees are usually flat.
My assumption, and I will be happy to lay my hands on a scientific research, is that application like Skype, MSN and others are coming on top of regular voice calls and not instead of it.