VOIP services

Poll: Google Talk Heard Over Skype Hype

VOIP companies shrugged off Google Talk's debut, but our readers are convinced that Google's (Nasdaq: GOOG) instant messenger/VOIP application poses a big competitive threat to Skype Technologies SA and others of its ilk (see Google Talk Talk).

In fact, a snapshot of the results from this week’s Light Reading Poll shows that a full 38 percent of our poll takers believe that Skype is the VOIP provider most threatened by Google Talk (see Google Talks the Talk and Poll: Google's Shooting for Skype). But 32 percent of readers believe that Vonage Holdings Corp., AOL (Time Warner Inc.) (NYSE: TWX), and the RBOCs will also may suffer loss of VOIP business to the Google product.

Conversely, 14 percent of our poll takers say no one should feel threatened by Google's nod toward becoming a consumer telecom service provider. Should Google ever decide to connect its service to the PSTN, this may change.

Our poll's second question asked readers to speculate on Google's acquisition plans, now that the company has billions in cash at its disposal (see Google Backs Powerline Carrier).

Nearly 20 percent think Google will take Skype, and another 15 percent said Google would buy "a consumer VOIP company like Vonage." The most popular response, though, with 28 percent of the votes, was that Google would buy "something else."

More than 180 Light Readers have taken the poll so far, and the poll will stay open until Friday.

— Mark Sullivan, Reporter, Light Reading

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