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Yahoo plans on Wednesday to activate Internet phone capabilities for Yahoo Messenger users in the U.S., a little more than three months after announcing this feature.
Since December, Yahoo has been doing a staggered rollout of the feature, which is now available for German, French, Spanish, Italian, and Singaporean users.
I bet all those telcom companies are still kicking themselves for laying ALL that fiber.
We see the same move now in the Netherlands. The largest telephone company has announced that telephony won't be their core business anymore within a few years. Since about 6 months they offer VOIP connections to business users without a normal telephone line. I.e. the company only has a DSL connection with the internet which handles all traffic, both data and telephony. The VOIP connections are connected at the telephone company side with the regular telephony backbone for calls with POTS subscribers.
An ISP which is a daughter of this telephone company started with a consumer test a few months ago where every private or business customer with an ADSL connection can get two VOIP telephone numbers for free (I signed up too :) ). These numbers are also connected to the national telephone backbone so it allows people with a VOIP connection to be called by anyone from anywhere. The system is based on the SIP protocol. Because it is a free subscription, it is not yet possible to make outgoing calls to POTS users or VOIP users with a different system (Skype etc).