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Thursday, September 24, 2009

What is wrong with VoIP word?

Travels, talks and telephony! There is "a thing" thrown from a corner to the other, enabling fear for some, hope for others. That is VoIP and clear is misused.

Bloggers around the world chopped every news about VoIP providers failure -- let's not give names, searching web will reveal important Telcos or famous venture-capitalist backed up operators closing their VoIP offerings.

Therefore something is wrong, what the heck? Everywhere I get the technology is heavy used. But hated in the same time. In my opinion it started with the way VoIP was brought to the market, since everybody contributed to it and mixed the technology with the service, building FUD, thus confusing environment.

Simply and in first place, VoIP is a telephony technology, on the same layer as TDM, ISDN. Not a service. The operator must not go to enterprise and end user selling VoIP, they must keep selling telephony plus new services. Digital telephony came as added value against analog telephony by allowing dynamic interaction via DTMF and more features to PBX-es. That was one of the attractions that made it worth to deploy and successful.

Today the operators simply fail to present the advantages VoIP brings to customers. In addition, Telco and Mobile operators perform anti-promoting actions to VoIP and they rely on it more than others for backbones and even to end customers -- just that they say it is either IMS based service or what so ever NGN-service.

Therefore I think everyone should review how they show VoIP. If I would be Telco or Mobile operator I would stop saying VoIP provides no QoS, is insecure, a.s.o. Simply that harms them, and I do it with every occasion asking what is what they use to route international calls, what is their new service based on, ...

So, they admit doing VoIP, but on private, secure network. Here we are! What they should better say? Telephony services on VoIP over public network cannot ensure YOU, the end user, QoS, security (well, here lot to debate, but not the scope of this post) and everything else they consider being atu of doing VoIP over their walled-garden infrastructure.

Pure VoIP service providers did the big mistake of advertising VoIP as service, and even worse, free service, thus they cut the main revenue stream, trapping themselves in traffic generation for termination, strongly tied to Telcos, rather than new services business. While a I see it "free as in speech" and not "free as in bear". The freedom I see is I, the customer, have the liberty to choose my terminal and use what ever functionality I like from what VoIP enables.

Everyone should promote what VoIP enables YOU, the customer, to access hell-out of many new services, like presence, instant messaging, video, integration with social networking sites, mobility, multiple identities on the same wire, a.s.o.

First, the average guy does not care what is VoIP. He needs to communicate and businesses should focus on that demand. Look at car manufacture, nobody promotes the technology behind new models, but the better fuel consumption figures, speed and acceleration, a.s.o. -- exactly what the end user cares about.

I, on the other hand, go to operators and sell VoIP solutions. And say, hey, VoIP is the technology to build the future of telephony, showing benefits of new services, maintenance costs, etc. I must promote the technology and scream in all direction VoIP, VoIP, VoIP.

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