Tuesday, June 14, 2005

It's Official Yahoo has Bought Dialpad

Andy Abramson - VoIP Watch

i just got off the phone with the Joanna Stevens of Yahoo's management team who confirmed Om's news account and my earlier opinion.
While Stevens was unable to release any details on the transaction, she was able to confirm that the deal was done with the Dialpad team and that the key reason for making the acquisition for Yahoo was for the complimentary Dialpad technology that quickly provides Yahoo with the ability to introduce PC to phone and Phone to PC services (i.e. compete with Skype) as well as the ability to scale and roll out other services that will initially be introduced on Yahoo Messenger the same way as it was done with British Telecom with the BT Communicator. Long term this is being positioned as an acquisition to enhance all of Yahoo's platform functionality across the Yahoo network, with the likely target areas to include gaming, groups, mail, shopping etc. Those core elements of Yahoo get enhanced by a big key to the acquisition, Dialpad's fraud management detection which can work initially with voice service transactions, but also could serve as prevention and detection tools to possibly other Yahoo business units.
Given how fast the deal came together Yahoo's Stevens wasn’t sure how long the integration will take or exactly which services will be rolled out when, as the plan has yet to be really defined. Yahoo obviously plans to integrate the Dialpad access into Yahoo Messenger first, but no pricing or plans are available yet.
As for Dialpad existing offerings, Dialpad users will be able to keep using and recharging their dialpadPrepaid, dialpadMonthly, dialpadUSA and Europe discount plans. Yahoo will also continue to accept new subscribers for these servicse. Dialpad CallingCard users will not be able to recharge their accounts, but will be able to keep using their minutes until their account expires, but Yahoo has cut off adding any subscribers as of today. That means the calling plans will still exist except PSTN-PSTN calling card, which is how Yahoo avoids offending SBC and Verizon.
As for other Dialpad offerings, the Dialpad analog tunnel adapter will be phased out while "for now" the Dialpad reseller relationships will be maintained for the time being but no long term determination has been made yet. I call that "dead man selling."
This still looks like a win for Yahoo and makes me wonder where it leaves MSN Messenger and how it one ups AOL, who plans to build a softphone into AIM at some point, but has yet to really pull that trigger.


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