Opinion: Going over-the-top, or not

(Image Credit: iStockPhoto/akrp)

Why do over-the-top (OTT) communication applications such as Skype, Viber, Line and WhatsApp exist? My view is, like most innovation, they exist to exploit inefficiency in a market.

If the world already had a service which provided ubiquitous, seamless communication with anybody, anywhere, at any time, across multiple media at a nominal cost, then there would be no need for OTT communication applications.

In the mobile...

By Paul Liesching, 23 February 2015, 1 comment. Categories: Apps, Content, Industry, Innovation, OTT Services.

To nobody's surprise, Indian telcos want to block WhatsApp OTT VoIP

(c)iStock.com/gilaxia

To the surprise of absolutely no one, telcos in India are objecting to plans for WhatsApp to launch VoIP and complaining about it to the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI). So reports The Hindu Business Line that includes this glorious quote from a representative of the Cellular Operators Association of India (COAI):

“Allowing the use of VoIP/ Internet telephony at...

By Dan York, 02 January 2015, 0 comments. Categories: Disruption, OTT Services.

Draft bill to bring OTT apps under government control

OTT apps are a threat to telecoms providers worldwide as most will offer equivalent or better services for free from which telcos have traditionally generated revenue. This turns the operators into "dumb pipes" as they are often referred – leaving them to deal with increasing amounts of data being passed through their networks by these services. 

In Vietnam, the telecommunication ministry is drafting a bill which would bring foreign messaging apps under government control...

By Ryan Daws, 05 December 2014, 1 comment. Categories: Apps, Disruption, Government, Net Neutrality, OTT Services, Regulation.

Over the top video revenue to reach $9.45bn in Europe

The total over-the-top (OTT) video revenue in Europe was up 51 percent in 2013 reaching $3.2 billion and is expected to grow a further 43 percent this year, according to the latest market study by Strategy Analytics.They predict that the majority of this new growth will occur within the online subscription VOD (SVOD) and ad-supported video business models, lifting the market above $9.45 billion by year-end 2018.The growth of OTT video suggests that the audience is shifting towards accessibility and availability over actual ownership of home videos on...

By David H. Deans, 17 September 2014, 0 comments. Categories: IPTV, OTT Services.

Why is Skype forcing a software upgrade on all of us?

Today when I opened up my laptop and switched to Skype, I found that I had been logged out:

Skype

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The text in that image says: "We've signed you out because you're using an outdated version of Skype. Download the latest version now."

Now, to be clear, I wasn't using an ancient version of Skype. My laptop had version 6.3.0.602 from sometime in, say, March 2013 - so yes, it was over a year old, but the thing with Skype is that it has had a history of always "just working", which perhaps we as users have gotten used to.

Community outrage

In a Skype public chat in which I participate a number of other users said they'd been logged out - and looking in the Windows Skype community and Mac Skype community web forums I see MANY messages from people who are experiencing problems over the past week. The frustration is even visible in the Linux Skype community (a community Skype has often ignored), where a staff moderator posted last Friday, August 1, this message:

From today, users with Skype for Linux version 4.2 and older will not be able to sign in to Skype. The error messages user will see during sign in may include “Can’t Connect to Skype” or...

By Dan York, 08 August 2014, 20 comments. Categories: Consumers, OTT Services, VoiP.

Indian operators take a stand on OTT players undercutting their revenue

Telecom operators in India have challenged the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) to provide a more level playing field for traditional operators against OTT players, according to reports.

According to the Economic Times of India, at a seminar organised by TRAI on “Regulatory Framework for OTT Services”, Vodafone’s TV Ramachandran said: “We want some kind...

By James Bourne, 07 August 2014, 1 comment. Categories: India, Operators, OTT Services.

Why UltraViolet won't halt the Netflix phenomenon

It's already apparent to most video entertainment industry analysts -- fewer people are interested in owning physical media and the recent results of DVD and Blu-ray disc sales in mature markets is a leading indicator of this growing trend. Other key trends are also emerging.Netflix helped boost subscription services to nearly 40 percent of the UK over-the-top (OTT) video entertainment market. The worldwide OTT video market reached nearly $11 billion in 2013, of which Netflix is also a significant contributor in...

By David H. Deans, 11 February 2014, 0 comments. Categories: Operators, OTT Services, Research, Smart TV.

Strand Consult: 2014 annus horribilis for telecom regulation

Amid the talk of IT growth in 2014, here’s a grim prediction for the coming year: Strand Consult predicts this year to be an “annus horribilis” for the telecom regulation industry.

In its yearly mobile telecom roundup note, the analyst firm has called out Europe as the problem area compared to the “strong leadership” of the US, adding that privacy, data protection and net neutrality...

By James Bourne, 06 January 2014, 0 comments. Categories: Broadband, Government, Operators, OTT Services, Research.

How to solve the second wave of mobile infrastructure

By Rajeev Tankha, Sr. Director Solutions Marketing at Oracle Communications

The fast pace of growth in the mobile devices market has seen consumers get closer than ever to their smartphones and tablets. A recent Gartner study suggested that tablet sales will increase by 70 per cent in the next year, and that over 2 billion smartphones will be in use globally by 2017.

These trends have placed more pressure than ever on Communications Service Providers (CSPs) to adopt full data networks to ensure the...

By Oracle Communications, 10 December 2013, 0 comments. Categories: Infrastructure, LTE, Operators, OTT Services.

Operators disagree on telco/OTT strategies #TTW

There's long since been an idea of collaboration between operators and OTT players. But some don't quite have that utopian view.

"Every day, every morning, every night, I'm thinking of how to compete with Fiber, Skype and WhatsApp," Giles Corbett, head of Libon at Orange, told the Telecoms Tech World audience in a lively debate. "I spend my time trying to compete with OTTs."

Orange's partnership with music provider Deezer was noted by all participants as an example of an OTT/operator success story, and...

By James Bourne, 26 November 2013, 0 comments. Categories: Networks, Operators, OTT Services.