Friday, May 20, 2005

Skype - building the standard of telecommunications

How is Skype going to fare now that everyone has decided to want a piece of the next big thing?
If you think about the online competitive landscape there are 4 major online players that will want to get a piece of this market:
1) MSN Messenger - just got enhanced VOIP capabilities
2) Yahoo! Messenger - just got enhanced VOIP capabilities
3) AOL - just launched a VOIP subscription service
4) Google - will likely want to round out product portfolio and offer IM, and VOIP in addition to email. After all, they are the only major player without a major desktop communication client

Vonage and the major telecom carriers. I think as of right now they are like the newspapers. They will not see the light of day until it is too late. Vonage? They are a hardware based vendor with a higher cost structure.

So, what about Skype? Can they go it alone? What other standars have been able to go-it-alone? The only application that comes to mind is PayPal.

So far, PayPal is on a roll in building the standard for online payments. However, there is a huge difference. PayPal really is going it alone, where as Skype has plenty of other competitors that offer PC-to-PC VOIP.

Granted, Skype is the only player that is offering PC-to-phone and now Phone-to-PC but for how long will they be the only player and is that enough? What else could give Skype a sustainable competitive advantage just like PayPal?
Blink It


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