March 2009

No Skype on iPhone for Canadians

by alec on March 31, 2009

I was a little irritated at all the Skype for iPhone news that popped up over the weekend.  After all, Skype usually at least gives me the courtesy of a heads-up, and the opportunity to test drive their new software. Not a peep, however. 

And then last night, at around midnight, the first twitter reports started to emerge that Skype for iPhone was available on the App Store.  No joy for me.  I couldn’t find it.  I put it down to Apple or Skype choosing a rolling launch – not an uncommon strategy.

But this morning?  Well, the IM nets and twitter were all alive with reports that Skype for iPhone was available globally… just not here in Canada.  And the culprit?  A lot of fingers pointed at Rogers Wireless, but in fact patents are the real reason.  TMCNet’s Tom Keating was able to eek a little more information out of Skype, including the details that the patent problem is codec related

There have been, over the years, a number of very sharp vendors of codec technologies in this country. It’s not surprising that some unique intellectual property has been deeveloped here.  It is surprising, however, that a patent might have issued in Canada, but not elsewhere, unless that patent is fairly recent.

And it’s irritating to be cut off from yet another piece of technology that everyone else in the world can access over intellectual property issues… again.

Humbug.

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Local MP Pierre Poilievre should be commended for the approach he has advocated to Google’s Street View project.  Cars with cameras are now on Canadian streets, taking photographs.  Whatever your opinion of the utility of Street View, Google is likely violating Canadian privacy laws in doing so. 

Poilievre is asking Google to testify before Parliament, as part of an effort to overhaul Canadian privacy legislation.  He’d like to know what happens to those photographs, where they are stored, and what is being done to protect Canadian’s privacy. 

As we speed toward the world of 1984, it’s good to see some of our politicians asking the right questions.  Poilievre’s committee should also examine the unrestricted use of surveillance cameras, internet service providers obligations, and a host of other privacy related issues that are cropping up as technology continues to advance at break-neck speed. 

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The Calliflower Affiliate Network kick-off call.

March 30, 2009

On Friday of last week, we started something new for Calliflower.  We held our first conference call for Calliflower affiliate network members.  It was short, and gave people the information they needed to go and implement a marketing program of their own to earn affiliate revenue from selling Calliflower.  It was also a great opportunity […]

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Microsoft commercials that work.

March 27, 2009

Finally Microsoft has some advertising that will appeal to ordinary people.  The gist?  PC’s are cheaper (a lot cheaper!) than Mac’s. Haven’t I been saying that here for a very very long time?  The campaign is very clever – pose as a market research firm, give ordinary people a budget to go buy a PC […]

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Will Skype on iPhone be great? I’m sceptical.

March 27, 2009

Rumour has it that Skype for iPhone will be unveiled next week.  I’m excited, because it would be great to be able to chat with my Skype buddies via iPhone, but I’m not super excited. If the rumour is true, there’s no reason to believe that Skype for iPhone won’t fall prey to all the […]

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Entrepreneur Magazine picks Calliflower

March 25, 2009

Entpreneur Magazine dropped me a line a few months back.  They were looking to speak with entrepreneurs who had built web apps.  The article just appeared!  Titled Yes, you can build your own web app, Learn from 5 Entrepreneurs who did it successfully, it profiles Calliflower, MedApps, Ustream.TV, Just Uptime, and OoVoo.  Here’s what they […]

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Skype embraces SIP; announces beta service for business users

March 23, 2009

Skype made a very welcome move this morning.  Their announcement of Skype for SIP beta simply means that PBX owners will be able to accept incoming calls from SIP users, and make outgoing calls using the Skype network to terminate them.  Jim Courtney has many more details in his post titled Business Long Distance: Death […]

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The view from my office

March 19, 2009

There is a crowd of Spanish speaking men top dressing the lawn beside my patio this morning.  Ottawa? March?  No.  For the last couple of weeks I’ve been in Mexico with my family for our annual vacation in the sun.  Frankly, with all that has been happening at iotum, I was worried about taking time […]

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Calliflower’s Free Conference Call service goes ad funded.

March 18, 2009

iotum today announced that the free conference calling version of the Calliflower service will add advertising. Calliflower Premium will remain advertising free, but Calliflower free conference calls will now be advertising funded.

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Tweet news from Calliflower

March 13, 2009

We snuck a nice little feature into Calliflower a couple of days ago – “Tweet This” — which is a tighter integration with Twitter.  It does three things: At the time you create a public conference call, you can choose to broadcast that event on Twitter.  Just press the “Tweet This” button.  Now your Twitter […]

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