VoIP not ready for primetime?

No its not me who is saying this, but instead it is officials from Level 3, a company that has bet big on VoIP and is hoping for wholesale VoIP to rescue it from the low-margin life of a bandwidth wholesaler. Charles Meyers, group vice president of marketing for Level 3 said that the early adopter market is saturated, and perhaps that is why the market is growing much slower than expected.

Numbers back him up – In July, Frost & Sullivan lowered their VoIP forecast from $5.4 billion market in 2008 to being a $4.1 billion market in 2010. Meyers pointed out that – less than 1% of total voice revenue comes from VoIP, and less than 3% of U.S. households have switched. “And the next 97 [percent] will be a lot harder than the first 3.”

“People view VoIP as a cheap alternative, and that’s not how we get to the early majority and the mainstream …. This industry has to substantially increase its marketing sophistication, beyond focusing myopically on price.

I could not have said it better, and time and again, I have brought this point up. I think many get swayed by the “early adopter” market place, and start believing that change will happen overnight. Most of us, who don’t study history, forget that revolutions take “years.” VoIP is precisely that. I think from a consumer perspective, VoIP or PSTN, it doesn’t matter. What matters is that their phone works. Vonage, Sun Rocket, Call Vantage and others have yet to prove that they are bullet proof.

full report @ Telephony Online