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Wednesday, March 16, 2011

I Don't Think Skype has a Bright Future

Years ago, while other IMs could only provide text messages, or few of them add really poor quality voice services, Skype brought phone-quality Voice over IP to us.

So, I registered an account and using it till today. But I don't think the company has a bright future.

First, the advantage of technique is not reliable. Voice-quality is the only advantage of Skype, the disappearing advantage -- others company like Google, their techniques are improving fast, and now high-quality VoIP are provided everywhere. (i.e. Even in web games like World of Warcraft ... )

Second, people do not like their basic IDs be controlled by commercial company. As I have noted before, Why I Don't Like Google Wave ( Written by Chinese ), people always prefer to control their IDs by their own, and remain the right of choices. For example, why email is so popular and is the base of internet? Not because it cool, fashion technique, but people with a email could:
  • Own their own email address by their own domain
  • Changing their email host / software freely, but remain the address no changed
  • Sending / Receiving mails from different email providers
So email is people's own ID, and go cross all-platform.

But Skype is operated by a company, it could only communicate between Skype users, and if you want to change to other service you have to rewrite all your contacts.

In the years of lacking high-quality VoIP services, I could bear that, but now there are so many choices.

Google's talk / voice is another commercial one, it opener than Skype, to allow 3nd-part clients.

And the real open-structure is provided by Linux community, like Ubuntu One, Ekiga ... their goal is to provide cross-platform IM ( whatever software you using, could send/receive message from any IM software ), and also including voice messages. For me, one problem is still, user can't have a real own ID, like domain / email.

Third, for Chinese people, the Skype forcing them to use a spyware-edition of Skype called Tom-Skype, I hate this, details may be read at Wiki.

So I don't like Skype, but I still using it, just because changing contacts is very boring. Good news is for me, every important contacts is given as email -- I never treat Skype as a formal contact method.

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