Wednesday, August 31, 2005


Skypehas quickly grown huge. This free download has rapidly reached the 50 million level. The service has alot of neat features: voice quality is excellent; the service is free computer to computer phone calls and extra features including SkypeOut allows calls to any phone number for 2 cents per minute.

Google has started with an instant messaging service and will add a VoIP service. The key difference is that Google will use standard open source protocols. This means that other services will be able to connect with Google and vice versa. For example, the Gizmo Project is an excellent soft phone along the lines of Skype. In fact it offers a number of free features not offered free by Skype. Again, Gizmo uses SIP which means that Google's new VoIP will be compatible.

In the area of instant messaging. There is already a long list of compatible clients. These include:

TrillianPro $25

The "big boys", AOL, YAHO and MSFT all have proprietary programs. MSFT announced the purchase of a VoIP service today. The neat feature of this program is to integrate the MSFT contacts manager with the address book so that users can click on any phone number posted on the web to make the call.

The Google business model will probably be mimicked by most others. In other words, the click to talk will be free but there will be an advertising fee paid by the vendor. My wife and I would have loved to have paid per call for thousands of calls made during the past 20 years. Our web site helped us rent resort property but it would have been great to be able to talk to the prospects and customers at the same time that they were viewing the web. We could have help them navigate through the pages to the condo that fit their needs. Our increased sales would have paid for the click to talk advertising fees hundreds of times over the cost.

Download click to talk now, hook up a microphone and try it out. Call me to discuss stocks, bonds, economics or any topic of your choice. The call is free!