[EAS] Skype

pjk pjk at design.eng.yale.edu
Thu Mar 18 22:06:29 EST 2004

Subject:   Skype

(from NewsScan Daily, 18 March 2004)

     Skype, a California start-up created by Niklas Zennstrom and
Janus Friis (founders of the Internet file-swapping service Kazaa),
is developing software to make it possible for free phone calls to
be made anywhere in the world. Swedish-born Zennstrom and Friis, a
citizen of Finland, decided to adapt peer-to-peer technology to
telecommunications: "We sat down and we had talked about this for a
long time. Where can we use this technology to solve some real
problems and take advantage of the competitive advantages of
disruptive technology? With peer-to-peer, whether we have 1 million
or 10 million or 100 million users, our cost is pretty much the
same. We can provide it for free, because we don't have any costs
for it." Venture capitalist Timothy Draper says, "This is a major
phenomenon that's going to spread throughout the world," and he
predicts that Skype will have "a really tremendous business."
Independent telecom analyst Daniel Berning says that "the basic
technology that they're applying, that's the way phones will work in
the future." (San Jose Mercury News 18 Mar 2004)

The entertainment industry is still trying to "put the toothpaste
back into the tube" in the wake of Kazaa and its kin. 
The Internet will continue to be a disruptive technology, this time
in long-distance communications. Do read the story though, because
Skype is not on a heads-on collision course with long-distance voice
services as we know them now.  --PJK

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