Ken has a nice post over there right now talking about new VoIP players getting a lot of attention currently like Rebtel and Jahjah. Not only does Ken reference Mr Blog (always a good way to get me to read your site) but he also expresses some contrarian positions – I’m all in now.
Ken sees Jajah, Rebtel, and others with similar products as short term businesses on the basis of the “Minutes are a commodity” argument. I have to agree with that, but I’d add a coupe of other points. First is addressable market. Both these companies seem to be serving a very small niche. How many people want to make lengthy (read costly) calls to international friends from their mobile phones? As Ken and a few others have noted, it’s just not worth the trouble for most of us. Secondly, there are few barriers to entry for new competitors. So not only are they faced with a weak value story out of the chute, based on existing competition, but anybody who thinks this is a good idea can copy Jajah or Rebtel pretty darned fast and so they could be faced with intense new competition going forward. Of course, all these are just results of the “commodity” aspect of these businesses., so perhaps I’m not adding anything.