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 by 1,000,000 PBX’s, and in Skype tears down more walls Dan York dissects the whole thing from the perspective of the technology.
#1. Four years ago I made the observation that a day might come when POTs users might pay to talk to VoIP users. As the scales TIP in favour of VoIP, people on the old telephone networks are going to be increasingly disadvantaged. Skype’s business model suggests that might never happen, given that they are selling local presence in many markets for just $60/month, but with this move they will certainly hasten the rate at which the cutover to VoIP happens.
#2. This is going to apply enormous pressure to international long distance markets. The bulk of overseas calls are still business related. Skype has just said that you can connect to any market globally for just $60/year.
#3. For the naysayers who say that Skype isn’t a business tool, I would observe that there are many folks, including myself, who disagree. In fact, today over 1/3 of Skype traffic is for business use.
Even the ordinarily sceptical Om Malik weighs in, calling it a marriage made in heaven. His only complaint – that users need sign up for a Skype for business account – is little more than the grumbled obligation of a journalist to find some balance in a story.