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Summary:

Michael Robertson, if nothing, knows how to get a new disruptive business model going. You know he is the Mp3.com and LinSpire.com guy. Making music industry mad, picking fights with Bill and these days with Skype, he is just a fun guy. So yesterday, his company […]

Michael Robertson, if nothing, knows how to get a new disruptive business model going. You know he is the Mp3.com and LinSpire.com guy. Making music industry mad, picking fights with Bill and these days with Skype, he is just a fun guy. So yesterday, his company SIPphone.com announced that it was launching an “unlocked” VoIP router. The router is made by D-Link. Unlocked, like in cell phones that work on any GSM network at the flick of a SIM card. “First VoIP Router From Top Tier Networking Company With No Monthly Fees Goes On Sale At SIPphone,” the press release screamed. But looks like Michael might have gone overboard this time. Boston-based Zoom claims that’s not true because it has been selling its ZoomTel products “unlocked since their release last summer, and the products are available in Comp USA, Fry’s, Micro Center, …, as well as retail outlets abroad.”

Zoom has always worked with any VoIP service, as well as providing our own through our Global Village service, and has always been useage based  – Zoom doesn’t require customers to sign up for a monthly plan or other lock-ins like other providers require.  Every other service provider asks users to pay a monthly fee for the “privilege” of having VoIP – Zoom’s rates are comparable to others but we don’t lock our customers into our service, let alone a monthly commitment. 

Now I know the market is getting crowded, and getting mind share even more fifficult, but this was just too much fun to pass up on!

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  1. PhoneBoy’s Blog Wednesday, December 31, 1969

    PhoneBoy didn’t get it right either.

    And I should have known better because I’ve seen these! Om points out that Zoom has been selling unlocked VoIP routers for some time. I believe they are an ADSL modem/router and VoIP device. I believe we got one of…

    COMMENT:
    AUTHOR: Aswath Rao

    Unlocked ATAs have been available for a while now. Now some have integrated it with a router. Good, but is it revolutionary? On the other hand, it would be newsworthy if an ATA allowed registration with multiple service providers concurrently. It would be page 1 news item if it ceases to be “Analog” TA and gives better user interface than the traditional 2500 set. Take Call waiting for example. VoIP is still stuck with flashhook. Even the Bellheads came up with a more sophisticated ADSI phones and enhanced call waiting. But the “smarter” Netheads are stuck in the mud, if not regressive.

    COMMENT:
    AUTHOR: lah

    I read the statement, “First VoIP Router From Top Tier Networking Company With No Monthly Fees Goes On Sale At SIPphone” as saying that SIPphone is selling its first VoIP router from a top tier company (namely D-Link). I didn’t get the sense that they were boasting to be the first company to sell an unlocked ATA router. If you looked at their hardware selection before this announcement, much of their devices were made by Grandstream (HandyTone 286 and 486) or some obscure Chinese manufacturer (Call-in-one)—so, being able to now sell a D-Link device fits with their claim in that sentence. In fact, I was corresponding with one of SIPphone’s technicians about using an unlocked Linksys PAP2 with SIPphone a few months back. He divulged to me that he was testing a similar device to the Linksys for SIPphone before it was made public. He, of course, didn’t mention to me that it was a D-Link router, but he did say to me that it was a device from “a top tier company”—and this was his exact words. For some, reading that sentence may sound like the typical Michael Robertson boast, but since I’m coming from a different experience and perspective, I didn’t see it as that.

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