Tuesday, October 9, 2007

VoIP over iPhone!

That day is not far when subscribers will be able to make VoIP calls from iPhone. The real question not whether iPhone will ever come out with an idea to provide VoIP services but eventually when and how much will it cost? A business plan to launch the VoIP services for individuals and house holds, though seems to be blurred in a distant future, is now clearly visible on the horizon of the next product line of telecom industry. At this time, when the telecom providers seems to have built enough infrastructure to provide such services, timing is going to be one of the important factors to reap the benefits.

An article recently published on PC World, which somehow did not catch much of the media attention, reported that British VOIP provider Truphone showed conventioneers how to use the iPhone's built-in Wi-Fi capability to make calls over Truphone's VoIP network. Truphone representatives demonstrated how a call can be initiated from a handset and then routed to Truphone's server via Wi-Fi. Though the Thruphone's spokesperson Mr. Smith asserted that the event was only a demonstration and was not intended to be a commercial launch, he also took the liberty to state, "This program doesn't do anything that Steve Jobs says not to do. and Apple is fairly neutral on third-party applications and they won't deliberately try to break them."

While Truphone regarded the event as a mere demonstration, the telecom market just seems right to launch such services. Telecom providers have upgraded their network to 3G and they have been laying wires all across United States to provide services which require, along with content, high speed IP network and a remarkable quality of service. VoIP products and services, which only existed on the desktop applications because of bandwidth issues, are now ready be deployed on the mobile phones.

Mobile VoIP, an application of VoIP technology to mobile handsets, requires at minimum high speed IP communications and the most common technology so far is Voice over Wi-Fi. Mobile VoIP, which uses SIP and Jabber protocols, can also be used over any broadband IP-capable wireless network connection such as the various 3G standards and WiMAX. While iPhone is only capable of connecting to Wi-Fi, some new phones in the market already have the capability to connect to the Wi-Fi network and make calls. T-mobile has already three phones in its pocket with such features and is aggressively marketing these handsets.

Estimations are that VoIP Mobile industry will grow to $12 Billion by 2010 in Europe alone. According to a study conducted by Gartner Inc, which was published in an article on PC World, by 2008, VoIP-enabled systems will account for some 97% of all systems sold. While all of this is still to be seen; potential yet to be demonstrated and VoIP services yet to be unleashed, it should be no surprise that year 2008 will bring an unprecedented era of IP phones in the world of telecommunication market.

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