Friday, February 04, 2005

Watch out cell phone companies

The New York Times reports:
Today people take laptops to wireless hot spots in coffee bars and airports to check their e-mail messages and to explore the Internet. Soon they may pack a new type of telephone and take it along, too, to make inexpensive calls using those wireless connections.

The phones are called voice over Internet protocol over Wi-Fi (or, simply, voice over Wi-Fi) handsets. Like conventional voice over Internet protocol, or VoIP, services, they digitize the voice and send it as data packets over the Internet. But they do it wirelessly, over an 802.11, or Wi-Fi, network. …

Dual mode handsets, which can use voice over Wi-Fi and cellular services, are also appearing. … These phones are designed to work as cellular handsets when, for example, people are driving, and then switch to a local area network as people enter a building and transfer from the cellular network to Wi-Fi.
I didn't get a cell phone until last year. I like being connected not matter where I am. But I doubt that anyone likes their cell-phone carrier. With Wi-Fi VoIP, we will begin to have more leverage.

As discussed earlier (Microsoft continues its invasion of the living room. The search for equilibrium in communications also continues.), we are still very much in flux with respect to our communication infrastructure.

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