Monday, February 28, 2005

Teleo, Damaka, Peerio - if this is the best anyone can do Skype has already won.

I make time to try new VoIP services, particularily softphones or IM like products when they are released, and I have to say I really don't get what goes through someones head when they try to get into this market.

Neither of the aformentioned - Teleo, Damaka, Peerio (vaporware until the release something that actually does something), or Voiceglo have the feature list that Skype offers or will offer soon. Presence is an afterthought if even thought of at all, NAT firewall issues, install problems, the list goes on and on. Here are some words of advice to any other VoIP provider that wishes to enter the P2P telephony space. Skype has 150 000 downloads a day, if you want to compete with them then take your time and release a product that actually is as good if not better. Concentrate on your feature set, make the GUI a high priority and don't crash my PC. You only get 1 chance to knock Skype off my PC, cause' it works and everyone I do business with uses it. I am not changing unless you give me a killer app. that forces the change.

Skype is only vulnerable in the following areas and they won't be for long, concentrate here and you might actually disrupt the apple cart. Your app. would have to be standards based (SIP), P2P to keep your costs of new users at zero, firewalls have to be irrelevant, access to the media stream to people can build IVR's and use your network, offer a non-gui service versions for integration to other apps., have presence as one of your key selling features, non-proprietarty voicemail format, offer all platforms of OS both mobile and fixed as well as hardware enabled devices - and lastly whiteboard and video. Unless you hit the market with all of those features in release 1.0, you haven't a chance at this market, Skype has too big of a lead you have no time to "get better" you have to "be better". To give Peerio credit, they claim to be able to do this, so in my mind they have the only chance of upsetting Skype today by concentrating on the business market opposed to residential, but as I mentioned they haven't released anything other than promises and I have never spoken to anyone that has actually witnessed first hand seeing the product. I am supposed to meet with a biz dev. person in March from Peerio, I hope to have more info. about them at that point.

That is the word according to me, take it for what its worth.. :)

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