VoIP Adoption Grows with Help From Facebook
January 09, 2013
By Mae Kowalke
, TMCnet Contributor
Recently I persuaded my father to use Skype (News - Alert) for the first time so he and the family in Northern Vermont could say hi over the holidays. It took a little effort to talk him into installing Skype and creating an account, but if he had lived just a little further north I would have had a much easier time.
That’s because Facebook is now offering VoIP in Canada as part of its chat service. It is one thing to persuade my family to try VoIP; it is another, far easier task, to get them logged into their Facebook (News - Alert) account.
Right now Facebook is only testing VoIP in Canada, but we know it will be in the U.S. soon; the company already is letting people who use its Facebook Messenger app leave little recorded messages along with the normal text chatting.
This just shows how far VoIP has come.
Image via CNET
Research by IBISWorld predicts that the VoIP market will grow by 14.2 percent this year, reaching $15.4 billion, as noted by unified communications provider, Teo.
IBISWorld thinks that digital voice as a component of other phone and internet plans is fueling much of the growth, wrote Teo.
VoIP is more affordable than ever before, according to IBISWorld, and many businesses are beginning to adopt VoIP because this affordability is now hard to miss. IBISWorld believes that VoIP will likely continue to become more simplistic, adding to the usability and affordability while still allowing for advanced communications.
Business fears of poor quality and reliability already are starting to fade away as the Internet grows increasingly robust.
Enterprise mobility and OTT VoIP are just adding fuel to the fire, according to IBISWorld. But if Facebook does roll out easy to use VoIP for all its members, “adding fuel” will be an understatement.
With a little thoughtfulness, Facebook could help VoIP reach new levels of mainstream adoption.
“[It] would be great if instead of a proprietary app Facebook used HTML5 along with WebRTC,” noted a recent blog post by Tom Keating (News - Alert) on TMCnet. “Yes, I know Facebook went down the HTML5 road before (unsuccessfully), but WebRTC makes this time different.”
Keating added, “Now just imagine a world with no phone numbers where someone's Facebook ID is their phone number. Sorry, Google+, you still haven't reached critical mass. As for Skype - should Microsoft (News - Alert) / Skype be $billions worried? Yep.”
While adoption of business VoIP is becoming more mainstream than ever, Facebook could add a boost that will make VoIP calling so commonplace that my achievement in getting my dad to use VoIP will seem not so special very soon.
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Edited by Rachel Ramsey