We had decided to skip over the story making the rounds about Google teaming up with VoIP Inc., most likely as a way to add a connection between its Google Talk product and the traditional (PSTN) phone system. It wasn't that interesting, because everyone knew they were going to eventually connect to the phone system, and the details of how or with whom didn't seem worth digging into... except once you realize what some of those details are. Credit goes to Om Malik for reminding us of VoIP Inc.'s... er... colorful past that we wrote about a few years ago. The company was run by a convicted felon (for robbery) (update: correcting a point here. We've been alerted that the old exec is no longer directly associated with the management team or the board of the company), began its life as a tea importing company, and eventually became VoIP Inc. through a reverse merger, and involves plenty of other questionable activities. Light Reading notes that the deal isn't officially about Google Talk, but just for Google's new click to call initiative, though lots of people expect it to eventually expand to the Talk product as well. Either way, it seems like an odd company for Google to team up with.
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