Microsoft's play for Skype for a pricey $8.5 billion isn't as concerning for Google as people might think, as Skype's peer-to-peer architecture feels dated next to the cloud.
tempting for media and analysts to look at Microsoft's $8.5 billion acquisition
of VOIP provider Skype as an assault
on the Google Voice cloud calling
has perhaps a few million users, while Microsoft would virtually own the VOIP
market, as Skype has some 700 million worldwide users. It is believed that
between 150 million and 170 million people actively use the PC-to-PC calling
analysts believe Skype's peer-to-peer architecture limits its scalability
Microsoft essentially paid a ton of money for a company that doesn't make a
whole lot of money. Gleacher & Co. analyst Yun Kim said only about 8.8
million of Skype's users actually pay for the service.
So what has
Microsoft purchased Skype for? To take a page out of Google's playbook. Google
is gradually layering Google Voice throughout its Web services. The company added
Google Voice to Gmail last summer.
One day, you
might well expect to do a search on Google.com and see links to click-to-call
businesses with Google Voice. The mechanism already exists in Google's
click-to-call ads, though users are using their mobile phones to make those
shows an inclination to do the same cross-platform integration with Skype, pledging
to weave Skype throughout products.
starting point is augmenting Microsoft Lync unified communications for
businesses with Skype, but other services such as Live Meeting, Outlook, Bing,
Windows Phone 7 and Xbox could all benefit from Skype's communications
successfully stitches Skype into Outlook or Lync, it might provide a more
lucrative suite than Google Apps. Microsoft might also integrate Skype
capabilities into Bing, potentially drawing more users to its search engine.