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Summary:

My colleague, Erick Schonfeld reports that Jeff Bonforte, president of SIPphone and the man spear-heading the Gizmo Project has jumped ship and joined Yahoo. Yahoo’s aggressiveness in the VoIP space is no surprise, but I wonder if Jeff’s departure leaves the two companies in a bit […]

My colleague, Erick Schonfeld reports that Jeff Bonforte, president of SIPphone and the man spear-heading the Gizmo Project has jumped ship and joined Yahoo. Yahoo’s aggressiveness in the VoIP space is no surprise, but I wonder if Jeff’s departure leaves the two companies in a bit of a limbo.

“I have to figure out how to integrate voice everywhere it should be—and to beat Skype,” he tells Business 2.0. Jeff will report to Brad Garlinghouse, and will try and figure out ways to take Yahoo’s VoIP beyond just a “VoIP+IM” client. Bonforte assured me that it was more of a personal decision and things are going well at SIPphone, and The Gizmo Project.

Michael Robertson wrote back in an email: “Jeff’s move was planned for some time because his fiance lives in San Jose. We were sorry to lose him, but love is thicker then VOIP. Jason Droege is now President.” Robertson says there have been some improvements in the software. “We’ve implemented new firewall penetrating code that is very effective at getting past troublesome routers and firewalls which is a big deal for SIP software,” he says. So far, there have been 100,000 downloads of the Gizmo software.

(Why do I feel it in my bones, that something is going to happen at Gizmo/SIPphone very soon? Maybe I am looking for shapes in shadows….)

  1. This firewall penetrating trick is a big mystery. First Skype claimed that they had licked the problem. Many others joined the chorus; but subsequent updates claimed improvements, as it is claimed here. It will be really nice to know some additional information and also some insight into how much of the problem is left to be conquered.

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  2. Anecdotally, I can tell you that Both Skype and Gizmo happily penetrate my work firewall without any configuration (Something that X-Lite won’t do), but Gizmo still falls over when I plug in to my Uni network, whereas Skype seems to have no difficulties, even behind the quite restrictive (HTTP only?) Firewall in our labs.

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  3. SIP needs to figure this firewall thing out. Kudos again to Skype.

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  4. What kind of thing is going to happen at the Gizmo project?

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