VoIP Comes of Age (Again)
Voice over IP technology has quietly matured from its status as cutting-edge to mainstream. But that doesn’t mean the technology isn’t moving forward. Quite the contrary: recent advances point to VoIP as a technology to watch (yet again) in 2010 = thanks to moves by Google and others. Here’s why.
Take, for instance, the recent acquisitions of and by VoIP companies. Genband, for one, recently announced its bid to purchase the assets of Nortel’s Carrier VoIP and Application Solutions Business (CVAS) globally, for $282 million and a total cost of ownership in excess of $400 million – a bargain price for a business with a global reach.
Telefonica, meanwhile, has purchased JAJAH for $207 million (a purely European acquisition, but one worth noting nonetheless), and KPN is scooping up long distance and VoIP wholesale provider iBasis (or at least the remaining 44 percent of it) for $93 million in cash.
And Then There’s Google…
Add to the pot the companies looking to join the VoIP fray, most notably Google. The uber-search company recently purchased VoIP interface company Gizmo5, which has an application that looks eerily like GoogleTalk and (surprise!) works with Google Voice, and rumors abound again that the company will release the gPhone, only this time as a VoIP phone, not standard mobile technology. Speculation is that Google will make a huge play in VoIP in the coming year.
Mix that with a healthy dash of upgraded technology – including high-definition VoIP for business users from 8×8 and a new Premium Voice service from SRS Labs, which will come as a pretuned, preinstalled feature on various PCs – and you’ve got all the ingredients for a big-time technology power play, a leap forward which some might term the second coming of VoIP.
Such a boon can only be of benefit to solution providers, especially as customers look to further trim their budgets and control costs without sacrificing quality. The promise of a new, improved VoIP with an expanded cast of players is like a double espresso for communications resellers and may be just the thing to put VoIP back on the cutting-edge track.