Feeds

Just one VoIP service to SIP from?

Gizmo scores Nokia coup

Boost IT visibility and business value

Serial entrepreneur Michael Robertson has learned a thing or two from competing with Microsoft. Life is much easier if you can get the dominant hardware vendors to bundle your software.

After founding MP3.com, and paying around a quarter of a billion dollars in damages to the record labels, Robertson went on to create the Lindows Linux distribution. Shortly after that, he was one of the first entrants in the SIP phone business with Project Gizmo.

We caught up with Robertson in Brighton on Friday, where he was being interviewed by Jim Griffin at MusicAlly's Digital Day contribution to The Great Escape festival.

Gizmo is basically a proprietary wrapper around SIP. It began life on Windows, Mac and Linux, migrated to smartphones, and since February, even runs embedded in a web page. It might not grab as many headlines as his music ventures - orbiting around MP3 tunes - but it appears to have stolen a march on its rivals.

In particular, Gizmo's close alliance with Nokia is finally paying off. After 18 months of graft, the Gizmo client now integrates tightly with Nokia's S60 handsets. Robertson told us that Nokia plans to bundle Gizmo with all of its WLAN-equipped N-series and E-series handsets.

"You can't succeed if you're not bundled," is how he bluntly explained Gizmo's strategy.

When we mentioned the new wave of SIP start-ups in the UK, such as Truphone and AQL, Robertson was dimissive of their chances of success.

"What's the cost of acquiring new customers?" he asked. "You can put up a billboard, but even that's expensive."

Gizmo, like Truphone and AQL, now integrates tightly with the handset's native address book and call log, an advantage of third party SIP add-ins such as Skype and Fring.

Then again, even if a SIP service is bundled, it still has to run the gauntlet of being kneecapped by the network operator en route to market.

Nokia made a beta of the S60 client available from its Beta Labs website last week [here]. Unfortunately, only versions for the N95 and N80 are so far available. Which is a bit pointless. If you have an N95 which has survived carrier sabotage, then you can download it from the catalogs application right from the handset. And if you have an N80, you really, really don't want to be doing VoIP unless you're a masochist. Here's hoping versions for a wider range of models will be along soon... ®

The essential guide to IT transformation

More from The Register

next story
Déjà vu: Virgin Media jacks up broadband prices
Screw copper phone lines, we're UNIQUE, bleats telco
UK fuzz want PINCODES on ALL mobile phones
Met Police calls for mandatory passwords on all new mobes
Netflix swallows yet another bitter pill, inks peering deal with TWC
Net neutrality crusader once again pays up for priority access
New Sprint CEO says he will lower axe on staff – but prices come first
'Very disruptive' new rates to be revealed next week
US TV stations bowl sueball directly at FCC's spectrum mega-sale
Broadcasters upset about coverage and cost as they shift up and down the dials
What's the nature of your emergency, Vodafone?
Oh, you've dialled the wrong number for ad fibs, rules ASA
EE network whacked by 'PDP authentication failure' blunder
Carrier is 'aware' of cockup, working on a fix NOW
ROAD TRIP! An FCC road trip – Leahy demands net neutrality debate across US
You crashed watchdog's site, now time to crash its ears
Google's so smart it's discovered SHARKS HAVE TEETH
Congratulations, world media, for rediscovering submarine cable armour
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
7 Elements of Radically Simple OS Migration
Avoid the typical headaches of OS migration during your next project by learning about 7 elements of radically simple OS migration.
BYOD's dark side: Data protection
An endpoint data protection solution that adds value to the user and the organization so it can protect itself from data loss as well as leverage corporate data.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?