Sunday, May 15, 2005

Pulver on The FCC

Andy Abramson - VoIP Watch


Jeff clearly has a viewpoint worth reading. While I know the big boys want to slow down the rapid encroachment of the upstarts, Jeff's points are rather interesting. But I have a slightly different view.
First, VoIP is going mainstream. The MSO's in the cable business all set out to deliver a fixed line replacement and have. That puts them in the same bucket as the RBOC's when it comes to E911. That also gives one heck of a lobby in DC between the two all focused on a common rising enemy.
For the next gen carriers who are defining the new wave of telephony, like nomadic softphone or TA travelers, they (the carriers) are the ones challenged by the E911 issue, while at the same time, developing the breakthrough that are forcing change to how people communicate.
Everything from instant messaging based services like Skype to phone company offered packages like CallVantage, Vonage, VoicePulse, Broadvoice, Packet8 etc., have been pushing the envelope to deliver better services at lower prices. Now they are getting around to addressing E911, something which was on their roadmaps but never a front burner issue for the most part in an era of customer acquisition oriented efforts.
The good citizen in me who is concerned about public safety understand the FCC's possible logic that Jeff lays out, but at the same time, the technology driven person that I am has me also realizing that Jeff's last paragraph may be where we end up, with a caste system that widens the digital divide instead of narrowing it.
The next few weeks will be very interesting, but I don't think anyone should throw in the towel just yet.

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