The PhoneBoy Blog


Simplifying Telecom, Mobile Phones, Gadgets, and More!

Let’s make some national policies on POTS over IP

Aside from pointing out a report from IDC on how many people they project will use VoIP (3 million by end of 2005, 27 million at the end of 2009), an article on IPInferno suggests we need to do something about the crazy quilt (and getting crazier) of state regulations governing POTS over IP. While I’m not big on needing more ineffective laws, I agree that something needs to be done to make this consistent on the nationallevel.

What is POTS over IP, you ask? It’s something Dan Brekke came up with that I think accurately describes the state of VoIP offerings today. The various players, Vonage, AT&T, Packet 8, VoicePulse, BroadVoice, and a host of others are doing little more than replicating the services I can get from my local POTS telco. Oh sure, they have some features I can’t get from my telco, but none of the features fundamentally change the way I communicate. They change the medium over which I communicate (an IP connection versus a hardwired PSTN line) as well as the pricepoint I pay ($20 for a PSTN line versus $20 for a PSTN line replacement with all US/Canada calling included as well as every telco feature in the book), but they do not shift too much from the traditional telephone call paradigm.

I think we’re several years away from an earth shattering paradigm shift when it comes to VoIP.


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