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Comments from Frankston, Reed, and Friends

Wednesday, August 25, 2004

DanB at 11:39 AM [url]:

WSJ phone industry article

In today's Wall Street Journal there is a Page One article titled "Phone Industry Faces Upheaval" by Ken Brown and Almar Latour. Readers of SATN.org should be well familiar with the issues discussed. The basic idea is that the phone companies are in the same position as the canal companies were in the 19th century when trains became a main form of transportation -- the old circuit-style technology will be overrun by VoIP so join it or lose out. Becoming a VoIP phone company is easy and inexpensive (it gives numbers and examples).

The article included one anecdote that struck me as a great new example to use in discussions. New York City is known for the problems companies ran into when they needed to move operations out of lower Manhattan after 9/11 and telephone lines were destroyed. Here is an example of a large company needing to move out of Manhattan for a short time because of the Republican convention but not having such a problem because of VoIP:

"The Visiting Nurse Service of New York, which has about 10,000 employees, expects to slash its payments to Verizon and other phone companies by $250,000 a year by using Internet phones. Operators at the service's after-hours call center are next to the midtown Manhattan site where the Republican convention will be held next week. They have to move temporarily. Because they have Internet phone accounts, that will be relatively easy. Since the operators will have a high-speed hookup at their new location, they'll automatically have phone service too -- without the need for a service visit by a phone company."

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