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Canada Gets Skype for iPhone, Not.

Tom does some handy investigative work and finds out that Skype has been banned from use in Canada due to a legal issue around what seems to be a codec related patent.

I then asked if other countries were affected or if it was just Canada and was informed it was just Canada. When asked whose patent it was or what category it involved (i.e. mobile VoIP), the representative told me, “I can’t go into many more details other than it’s codec related.”

That really bites. I was hoping to do some testing via Skype for iPhone on the new Skype for SIP on Response Point.

Skype for SIP, it's about time!


Back in 2004 I wrote a post relating to the VON Canada Panel I sat on with Niklas Zennstrom. It was an interesting debate on open standards (SIP in this case) and closed networks, specifically Skype. I was quite vocal about how silly I thought Skype was not to include SIP, a few of you picked up on that 😉

It looks like something good came of the eBay purchase as we now see a Skype pushing towards open standards, good stuff!

On a similar note, I heard a rumour that it’s likely Jason Fischl the current CTO at Counterpath (Xten) will be going over to work with Jonathan Christensen (General Manager – Media Platform) at Skype. Jason was an early advocate of SIP in the IETF and works with some of the best minds on the subject: Cullen Jennings, Robert Sparks, Alan Duric come to mind.

This could get interesting.

I will do some testing with SkypeforSIP & Response Point and post the results along with my comments on what this new offer from Skype might mean for Response Point.

P2P VoIP is Hot and Getting Hotter

With Avaya’s purchase of Nimcat and eBay’s purchase of Skype I think it’s obvious that P2P VoIP is one hot topic with investors and press lately.

Something that surprises me is the lack of Video in these offerings. Neither Skype nor Nimcat offer video. Yes, Skype has said it is working on Video but it would seem as though the technology needs work. At the recent VON show Niklas Zennstrom was supposed to make his keynote via Skype’s new video component but it failed and hence no keynote.

I think P2P VoIP has merit but in order for it to really take off it must be standards-based and offer all the features.

If 2004 was the year of VoIP maybe 2005 is the year of P2P VoIP.

P2P VoIP Player Nimcat – bought by Avaya

More proof that P2P VoIP is hot right now and getting hotter, first Skype now Nimcat. Should be interesting to see how this P2P landscape shapes up.

Excerpt from National Post:

“Embedding communications intelligence directly in the endpoints rather than the network will enable enterprises to implement streamlined peer-to-peer IP communications quickly and cost-effectively.”

The nimX software includes the most frequently used telephone features such as voice mail, conferencing and auto-attendant.

“All that is required for installation is to plug the IP phones into the same data network used by office personal computers,” Avaya said.

Interview: Cullen Jennings – Adhoc P2P SIP Meeting at 63rd IETF

P2P VOIP was made famous by Skype, but what does the future of P2P VoIP look like?

Cullen Jennings – Distinguished Engineer in the Voice Technology Group at Cisco, has some great insight into what just took place at the 63rd IETF Meeting in Paris.

The exclusive interview | MP3 | 8MB | 24Mins:

Cullen makes some great comparisons to Skype and talks about some very interesting applications for open standards P2P VOIP, disaster relief communications and security came up.

Some questions answered:
– What was this adhoc meeting on P2P SIP all about at the IETF?
– Do you think P2P SIP will have a profound affect on VoIP?
– How would P2P SIP compare to Skype’s P2P model?
– Is it better or worse than Skype’s model?
– Do you see P2P SIP replacing the SIP Proxy in traditional SIP networks?
– Will there be a P2P SIP Working Group in the IETF anytime soon?
– Where do we go from here?

Comments are certainly welcome.

I will be posting links to the mailing lists and other resources in the next few days.

UPDATE | Tuesday Aug 9 2005
P2P SIP IETF Mail List:

P2P VoIP using SIP and Open Standards

Every operator/portal/service provider/mso [Yahoo,AOL,Gizmo,Comcast, Verizon,EarthLink,etc.] out there are rushing to create, or recreate, an IM VoIP soft client that has all the appeal of Skype with open standard compatibility. Since the most predominant and most promising VoIP protocol out their is SIP [Session Initiation Protocol] we are seeing a migration away from proprietary protocols towards SIP.

The next significant phase in the growth of IP communications will include open standards P2P VoIP.

David Bryan and Cullen Jennings, along with a boatload of very smart industry leaders in the IETF, are working on new extensions to the existing SIP protocol. It’s called P2P SIP. After looking at the draft I would say it has a ways to go yet but I can see where this technology could become very useful to all VoIP operators like Free World Dialup operated by Jeff Pulver. & his new CTO Henry Sinnreich. Apparently they think so too considering they are looking for a response to their RFI which includes an earlier component of P2P SIP called Chord.

Even operators like Vonage or device manufacturers like PhoneGnome and Linksys PAP2 could make use of P2P SIP.

Everyone is looking for a new solution for P2P VoIP, I think P2P SIP is the answer, do you? Read the latest P2P SIP draft and tell me what you think.

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