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Summary:

Early adopters love VoWiFi phones, and disagree with me on the whole issue. I just think the ease of use and real good economic incentive is not there as yet. That doesn’t mean it will never be useful. Read the comments on my previous post. Andy […]

Early adopters love VoWiFi phones, and disagree with me on the whole issue. I just think the ease of use and real good economic incentive is not there as yet. That doesn’t mean it will never be useful. Read the comments on my previous post. Andy says, “Just like I look at Skype and FWD:Pulver Communicator as Internet Intercoms with the ability to dial out (and in the PC’s case, receive calls) I look at a softphone that lets you do VoWiFI as an extension to my VoIP service, not another line.”

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  1. If these VoWiFi phones ever do catch on, its time to short the you-know-what out of the wireless carriers.

    Best estimates are that almost 33% of current wireless voice minutes are vulnerable to VoWiFi substitution (via hotspots, the office, the home…)

    My best guess is that VoWiFi is late 05, sometime 2006 event, and the big pushers will be the MSO’s. But first they must hammer out resell deals with the (dumbass?) wireless carriers.

    Anyway the prospect of another 10-20% drop in wireless MOU yield should put a ceiling on these stocks for sometime.

    Plus, VoWiFi is the last opportunity for non-QCOM chip suppliers to grap a share of the very robust handset market, ie. cordless+cellular.

  2. Charlie, so do you think this is going to become a problem going forward? I am wondering how various different voice options are going to siphon off minutes off the voice network? elsewhere, Jesse suggests that this could be a great thing for the network operators if not consumers?

  3. To clarify, (hybrid cellular) VoWiFi means less MOUs for wireless carriers but it also means less need for base-station equipment and spectrum. Also, most existing office WLANs are not ready for voice and this gives carriers a chance to go in with a wireless office solution that leads to new/retained cellular contracts. VoWiFi is only bad for carriers if they let it be.

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