RealTime IT News

Internet Telephony To Take Off Next Year, Analyst Says

Acceptance of Internet telephony has grown since Jerusalem-based voice over IP company Deltathree was founded in 1996, hot on the heels of fellow Israeli startup VocalTec, a technological pioneer in the field whose share price was a less-than-promising $5 on Monday.

Now voice over IP (VoIP), or voice over the net (VON), as it is variously known, employs a great many people, a not insignificant number of whom work for Israeli VON infrastructure players such as AudioCodes, RADVision and P-Cube. The prices of AudioCodes' and RADVision's shares on Monday were $18 and $16 respectively.

"For the first time in the history of telecommunications, the opportunity truly exists for the same protocol (IP) to run end-to-end between the equipment at the customer's home, the service provider's office and the office premises of the called party," said VON industry analyst Jeff Pulver in his November report.

"It is my belief that 2001 will be known as the year 'VON becomes the Establishment'," he said.

However, on a less positive note, he cautioned that there have only been a few successful initial public offerings from within the industry this year, leading to greater caution on the part of investors.

"During 2001, look for some of the killer apps to appear inside the presence and instant messaging industry," he said. "Those who are able to build bridges between the various components of the IP communications industry will be best positioned to succeed."

See related story on InternetNews.com, Deltathree's Shares Sell for $1, But "Business Is Great", Dec 4th 2000.