The Ghosts Of Hotspots Past

from the where's-the-there-in-VoWiFi dept

Okay, there’s been a lot of hype around the idea of Voice over WiFi (for which I still can’t resist using the term VoWiFi), but this article from London makes some very good points about why VoWiFi-based systems are likely to fail if they don’t come up with some sort of “killer app” that makes them different from your everyday mobile phone. As much as I hate the term “killer app”, he makes a good point. He compares the idea of VoWiFi to the old CT-2 system in the late 80s, that involved a mobile phone that could only be used at specific “hotspots”. Right now, the only real benefit for VoWiFi appears to be routing around the phone company. However, as most mobile phones now offer huge bundles of minutes (to the point that it’s basically a flat-rate), the benefit doesn’t seem that big. However, I’m a little more optimistic that such a killer app will be discovered, as we don’t have to wait for the phone companies to do the innovating for us, but can come up with our own solutions. Throughout the article, he notes that the biggest problem with the old CT-2 systems like Rabbit were that they were run by telco guys. With VoWiFi, the people doing the cool stuff are people who are trying to get around the old telco guys.

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