Paul Erickson and Joyce Dorris, former MCI Consumer executives, who “pioneered many of MCI’s breakthrough innovations, including 1-800-COLLECT and The Neighborhood Built by MCI” have just launched a new company, SunRocket. The Vienna, VAcompany was started in early 2004 and Nokia Venture Partners led the company’s first round of financing. Nokia is putting money in a VoIP service company – wouldn’t that piss off cell phone operators? No details have been offered so far. The founders are hoping to bring VoIP to consumers in a new-improved fashion. No Gotcha Marketing! Oh really! (Now not to be dismissive of it all, I hope to chat with these guys soon, and perhaps learn something which would change my mind. )
Absolutely no one is selling a residential package “an all-inclusive price of $24.95 per month.” This wonderful package is now available in Washington, D.C., Baltimore, and Boston, SunRocket will be available in cities across America by the end of the year. Paul Erickson, chief executive officer of SunRocket says, “We recognize the mounting frustration that consumers have with escalating fees, add-on surcharges and taxes that turn an advertised $49.99 price into a $65 monthly phone bill. With SunRocket’s Bottom-Line Pricing, members get everything they need for one low monthly price which includes taxes.” And just when you are ready to sign-up, they will give you two numbers for the price of one. And infact, they will give 100 free minutes to any of 13 countries or 30 minutes or more to any of 75 countries.
The upside of ex-MCI folks launching this service is that AT&T, Vonage, and others like Lingo are going to spend more on advertising, and cut prices further. No one will make money, but some of us will pay a lot less for the VoIP service. As his royal purpleness sings its … 1999.