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Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Microsoft spends $8.5 billion to buy Skype and VOIPGURUs IMHO

Microsoft spends $8.5 billion to buy Skype

Holy honeydrops looks like Google and Facebook won't be buying Skype anytime soon

So what is actually going on here?

Lets face it Microsoft has been dropping down the charts of innovation lately. Google is the biggest search engine, FaceBook is the biggest social network site, Android has become the fastest growing mobile device (including tablets) operating system, Microsoft owns the corporate desktop and also the personal pc desktop, RIM still owns the corporate Smartphone, Apple is taking market share in the Smartphone arena, Skype is the biggest VOIP brand, and yes Apple owns the tablet and portable music market right now.

So in the emerging post PC world i have no idea what to do with the legacy companies like AOL , Palm, and Hayes the modem maker but i can assure you the disruptive innovators are feverishly working in a garage in Palo Alto, Trento and Ottawa right now.

So Microsoft has somewhere like $50 billion in cash and generates another $15 billion in free cash so they can really afford the purchase. Do like Cisco - its cheaper to buy an existing platform and bring to market a lot faster than building from scratch.

Skype has about 100 million active paying users and over 600 million registered and using it occasionally for free. It’s available on practically every Smartphone, PC and tablet device worldwide. It is the world’s best known brand for free or cheap internet based VOIP telephony and video based calls. It also includes instant messaging and presence as a bonus.

Microsoft now has the ability to integrate Skype into their desktops and the Windows Phone 7 very easily. Just imagine having a truly integrated Skype client that can receive calls from your cousin in Bulgaria as easily as receiving a local call. Sure we have it today but its still not truly integrated the way it could be when you own the source code.

Microsoft would also seek to introduce Skype into the Xbox (probably a platform with more IP ports than Nortel ever had) , and why not Outlook, Word, or even do a click to call through PowerPoint.

Avaya has already arranged a partnership for a Skype client for their Aura IP telephony platform. Imagine calling an Avaya based contact centre through Skype on your Smartphone or tablet while at Starbucks sipping a Pumpkin Soy low Fat Latte with double foam and free Wi-Fi.

Imagine Skype embedded in Microsoft’s Lync Enterprise platform and integral to OCS. Now maybe we have a game changer in the business enterprise space. Every business grade IP telephony manufacturer has shifted their R&D to software based SIP applications that will replace today’s touch tone telephone. More and more are hanging up on the Telco’s and cancelling their copper based service.

If Jobs doesn’t do it with the iPad 3 then Ballmer better hurry up and get Samsung on board for the WindowsHomeControl smart screen on their washer/ dryers and refrigerators. "mommy the dishwasher is ringing. ......Get the phone...pick it up...mommy ...get the phone!"

Its coming folks and ya’ll laughed when i predicted Wi-Fi technology would change the internet forever

So Microsoft has accomplished many things with this purchase:

• Access to over 600 million registered users with a global brand
• Shut out their competitors from buying Skype
• Speed to market with a communication app that works on everything already

So hopefully Microsoft wont screw it up like EBay did. The bought Skype for about $2B 6 years ago hoping that it would be ideal to connect EBay sellers with EBay buyers in the auctions but this never worked out and EBay took a big loss. Hopefully they won’t change the Skype brand name to Zune or Vista either.

The egos wont allow it but RIM and Microsoft should partner up next! And take Yahoos to the altar as well for an interesting 3 way play.

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