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Pete Baldwin 12/5/2012 | 3:31:26 PM
re: Ooma Takes Aim With VOIP Device Oof. Ooma's raised another $16M.

http://tinyurl.com/3fodwz
DCITDave 12/5/2012 | 3:05:09 PM
re: Ooma Takes Aim With VOIP Device This is a weird one, eh? A VOIP service that makes all its money on the hardware sales up front.

Did I read this wrong or are they fine with having hardly any recurring revenue? And will they just eat support costs over the years following the sale of the first device?

Will they meet their Dooma?

Gotta admit, though, free calling even to someone who's not an Ooma user is a very attractive feature.

ph
DCITDave 12/5/2012 | 3:05:09 PM
re: Ooma Takes Aim With VOIP Device re: "Who wants to offer a commoditized service and compete on price?"

Have you seen what the telcos are doing in TV these days?
rainbowarrior 12/5/2012 | 3:05:08 PM
re: Ooma Takes Aim With VOIP Device
Phil,

If I understand this propely, then this is peer-to-peer model and the only way to dial out of the network is to dial into another user. So the "free long distance" only works if there is another user in the area you are calling who owns an OOMA box and a landline, and has allowed the land line to be used in this manner, and is not being used by another OOMA call.
So you would need very, very high market saturation rates to get this to work. And at $400 a box, is that remotely possible?

And then you would also have to assume that the peer-to-peer directory service scales.

And then there are security concerns. What if someone makes a call through my OOMA box that goes through my landline and the call is threatening or obscene. Do I have some exposure or liability since the call was coming from my house as far as the PSTN was concerned?

All this to save on domestic long-distance calls which are not all that expensive and getting cheaper all the time. $400 buys a lot of domestic long-distance.

But, if it doesn't work and you can't get calls through, well, you already paid your $400 so I guess your out of luck.

sathyaw 12/5/2012 | 3:05:08 PM
re: Ooma Takes Aim With VOIP Device Freeworld dial-up tried the same model may be 3-4 years ago, users should know that ooma is routing calls through their land lines. I do not know how they are going to make the line available if the user wants to use his land line when someone is on the line.

Bottom line is ooma is looking for usres who want to spend 400 upfront and then keep the land line + then have DSL. Call quality will also depend on what these other users are doing with their broadband.

Just a suggestion, how about paying back the users for the calls that are routed through their land line.
Ryan Lawler 12/5/2012 | 3:05:08 PM
re: Ooma Takes Aim With VOIP Device To answer a few questions: At least during the trial stage, the company is requiring that users who receive free boxes keep their landlines so that they can build out the network of PSTN connections in local exchanges. When the trial period ends and the company starts selling the ooma devices commercially in September, however, they are betting on a number of users keeping their landlines for 911 service, etc. If they don't have coverage in a local area, ooma says it will pay interconnect fees to the local carriers.

And finally, unfortunately the service won't work if the company folds.
Ryan Lawler 12/5/2012 | 3:05:08 PM
re: Ooma Takes Aim With VOIP Device To answer a few questions: At least during the trial stage, the company is requiring that users who receive free boxes keep their landlines so that they can build out the network of PSTN connections in local exchanges. When the trial period ends and the company starts selling the ooma devices commercially in September, however, they are betting on a number of users keeping their landlines for 911 service, etc. If they don't have coverage in a local area, ooma says it will pay interconnect fees to the local carriers.

And finally, unfortunately the service won't work if the company folds.
aswath 12/5/2012 | 3:05:08 PM
re: Ooma Takes Aim With VOIP Device #4: Quoting the CEO (from a podcast available at Techcrunch) with as much of a straight face as I can muster: Given that local calling is about 12 mile radius, it does not take much Ooma boxes to cover the country. So coverage is not the problem. But capacity is. The beauty of this proposal is as customers are added, the capacity increases naturally.

Of course nobody asked him what if a large proportion of users opt out to share their PSTN line?

It will be nice if the box will continue to offer features even if the service folds. This way at least one can continue to use it as an answering machine and provide distinctive ringing etc. But it is not clear that the box is designed so.
aswath 12/5/2012 | 3:05:08 PM
re: Ooma Takes Aim With VOIP Device #3: The international rates are that "very little". One can get the quoted rate to India from Reliance India that too from a PSTN line.
opticalwatcher 12/5/2012 | 3:05:08 PM
re: Ooma Takes Aim With VOIP Device Sounds like they still charge for international calls (though very little).

The thing I find fascinating is that they encourage you to keep a local phone line. They -use- this local line to route other customers calls to the PTSN in your area. They've found an interesting way of connecting to the PTSN.
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