SquawkBox Conference Call: Skype Over Verizon – What Are The Consequences

Announcement of the Skype – Verizon agreement certainly has generated buzz around both the Mobile World Congress and the blogosphere. Last Wednesday morning, one day after the announcement, several bloggers and mobile ecosystem players came together on a CalliFlower-hosted SquawkBox conference call to discuss both the triggers for the agreement and the implementations.

Co-hosted by Carl Ford and myself, participants on the call were Andy Abramson (who had been listening to the jungle drums on-site at MWC), Hudson Barton, James Body, William Volk, Alec Saunders, Thomas Howe and Moishe Maier.

Topics covered included:

  • Verizon’s history of invoking VoIP; the “game” for Verizon (Carl Ford 00:30)
  • Why Verizon finally had no choice but to do the deal. (Andy Abramson 02:15)
  • What were the competitive drivers? (Andy Abramson 03:20)
  • How does Verizon benefit from this agreement? (Andy Abramson 04:20)
  • Who are the real winners (and losers) from this agreement? (Andy Abramson 05:00)
  • How does this differ from what 3 is doing with Skype in nine countries (Andy Abramson 06:50)
  • Lost in the announcement: final release of Skype for Symbian (Andy Abramson 07:50)
  • Applications implications I: initial thoughts from Thomas Howe (08:15)
  • Is Verizon missing a market segment through their smartphone offerings (James Body 09:05)
  • Is this net neutral and no risk for Verizon? (Alec Saunders 11:00)
  • How this agreement is a win for RIM (Andy Abramson 12:50)
  • Dumb pipe or embedded intelligence: (Andy Abramson, Alec Saunders 13:50_ [Note that my last question to Russ Shaw was meant to be quoted as “When can I say ’Call Russ Shaw on Skype’?”, not “on mobile” as stated in this conversation; all four carrier friendly points referenced in this discussion can be found here.)
  • Perhaps the most informative commentary: Applications implications II: a very interesting perspective on the mobile application store market from William Volk who has several of the top selling games on the iPhone. Backed up with comments by Mr. Mashup, Thomas Howe  (17:25) Terminology: ECPM – effective CPM. Bill makes some very poignant points about the uniqueness of Apple’s app store and why Verizon’s Get-It-Now app store that has no appeal to developers.


Posts referenced during the call or subsequently relevant:

Thanks to Angelo Mandato at RawVoice for his assistance with getting my first “podcast” up and running using the BluBrry PowerPress WordPress plug-in. And, of course, our thanks to all who participated in the call.

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About Jim Courtney

Bringing over thirty years' experience in the sales, marketing and management of cutting edge technology businesses.

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