Truphone is one VoIP service I have always admired and it’s not just because they supply inexpensive, yet high quality voice calls. Their developers have also taken a serious look at the device integration to ensure that the user experience in making an "Internet" call is as similar as feasible to making a standard voice call. It is integrated into the native Nokia Contact directory; installation and provisioning of an account is quite straight forward. (In fact, as they told me would happen when at ceBit back in March, the recent release of Truphone 3 has made this user experience even more seamless.)
However, as discussed in an earlier post, Truphone has had an issue with respect to being able to communicate with T-Mobile customers in the U.K. For whatever reasons, Truphone’s reasonable efforts at resolving this issue did not come to a timely resolution; as a result late last week Truphone applied to the Royal Courts of Justice for injunctive relief. Today they won that injunction request with the result that Truphone numbers must be interconnected with T-Mobile by next Monday, July 23.
Truphone CEO James Tagg released the following statement:
- "The injunction is good news not only for Truphone but for every company trying to develop internet-era services and for every consumer wanting freedom of choice and lower prices. We are determined to bring better-value mobile calls, text messages and other innovative services to mobile phone users, and it’s right that we should not be prevented from doing so."
- "To be granted interim relief means we successfully demonstrated that we have an arguable case to make at a full trial."
- "We didn’t want to go to court but we had no choice: T-Mobile was effectively preventing the launch of the Truphone service so we had to take urgent action."
While only applying in law to the U.K., let’s hope it helps to establish precedent as VoIP services around the world come into the market. The bottom line message is that consumers need open access and consumers should make the choice for their telecom and other communications services.
In the case of my fellow Canadian Skypers, we would appreciate if the CRTC would open up competition by allowing SkypeIn services without the need for 911 services. Skype has demonstrated in other countries that they can provide adequate warnings to users to the effect that they have no intention of being a replacement phone service with 911 access.
Tags: Truphone, T-Moible, Royal Courts of Justice
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