December 07, 2005

FWD Could be a Platform for Voice 2.0

Less than three weeks back, I wrote about beta testing of Relevance Engine from iotum. At that time I mentioned that iotum need not restrict the beta to only those who reside in one of the few area codes if only they partner with a VoIP provider like FWD. Past Monday, iotum and FWD announced just that. They are scheduled to conduct the trial in January. So it is reasonable to assume that they have been working on this for a while now. In two recent posts, I had suggested other services like SlingBox and FolderShare can partner with FWD. Probably the partnership with iotum could be used a model for others as well. There is no risk of undermining the integrity of the whole system because of these trials. After all, trial participants can be isolated to a separate proxy. This way, FWD could be the laboratory where more and more Voice 2.0 (actually the label is myopic) services and features can be experimented, thereby earning the moniker “for geeks by geeks”.

Posted by aswath at December 7, 2005 11:41 PM
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Hi Aswath;

I very much agree with you that FWD is great test bed for Iotum. Sure, their initial trial was only for local area codes - that's a safe, low key way to go. FWD itself is really an IP lab environment, and with its interconnects with other VoIP and SIP platforms, it seems to be an ideal environment for Iotum.

Also, I believe Iotum is ahead of the VoIP/voice 2.0 curve, and it's too early to test this on a mass market basis, or with an ILEC. FWD users are exactly the kind of people who will "get it" and actually see some utility in the Relevance Engine. So, this looks like a real win-win to me. It's a chance to refine Iotum's platform and value proposition, and once that's done, FWD will also have a great value-added feature that could arguably put them ahead of Skype in terms of sticky applications.

Posted by: Jon at December 13, 2005 01:07 AM

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