Search Engines Serve
Up VoIP Calls
VoIP is getting so hot that everyone wants a piece
of it, even the Internet search engines. Search engine
giants like Google, Yahoo and MSN already have commitments
to a VoIP future and just recently AOL has decided that
they want to be a VoIP VIP as well.
Google's venture into VoIP has been with their new
Google Talk program. With Google Talk, users can harness
the power of VoIP to contact others over the Internet
using email, instant messaging or by calling. What's
more is that Google Talk is free, cheap and easy. Google
Talk does use Jabber can be used to get on to GT with
GAIM, Trillian, iChat, and even Adium. It may not have
all the bells and whistles that other clients have but
early reports have been positive about the functionality.
has supported VoIP for a while now through its
Yahoo Messenger service. Yahoo Messenger with
Voice offers free PC-to-PC calling worldwide,
using just a headset, microphone and speakers.
Through Yahoo Messenger is it possible to use
a webcam, send photos and IM a friend on a mobile
phone. With Yahoo Messenger, you have many choices
on how you'd like to personalize your Messenger
window and experience online using avatars, images,
emoticons and audibles. Audibles let you send
some fanciful preset voice messages to the user
on the other end.
Not to be left in the dust, Microsoft has purchased
a VoIP company called Teleo and will wrap its software
into their MSN Messenger service. According to Microsoft,
"Combining the technology and expertise of Teleo
with Microsoft's existing VoIP investments in MSN is
expected to help advance efforts to connect people to
the information and people that matter to them ultimately
enhancing the integration of rich voice capabilities
throughout MSN communication and information services,
including MSN Messenger."
And, not to be left totally out in the cold, AOL has
announced its new TotalTalk VoIP service. Through TotalTalk
calls can be placed "
using a computer and
standard telephone hardware together by connecting a
telephone line and a cable or DSL modem to a broadband
router." Users don't even need to have AOL as their
ISP in order to use the TotalTalk service. AOL says
that TotalTalk will be a paradigm shift for many users
and that the next version, code named Triton, will allow
users to use their computers to answer calls to their
home phones and even forward calls to their cell phones.
| Just when you thought the big VoIP companies
like Skype and Vonage were fighting with the traditional
Baby Bells over telecommunications turf, the search engines
step in and start marking off their own pieces of the
VoIP pie. And to make matters even harrier, Ebay has acquired
Skype and has its own master plan for Internet Telecommunications
world domination in mind. These are exciting times in
the VoIP field and they are even going to get better.