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Skype Gripes About Closed Wireless Networks
Says last week's comments by execs just empty lip service
by Karl Bode 01:27PM Tuesday Sep 16 2008
Last week saw wireless industry executives pay lip service to opening up their networks at the CTIA Fall 2008 trade show, but it became relatively clear that their idea of truly open might not match up with everybody else's. The carriers warned against wireless networks where any device could connect and any application could be used, arguing that this could lead to a "wild west" where the "customer experience" would be degraded. Also degraded of course would be wireless carrier content, SMS/MMS and voice revenues.

Skype was apparently annoyed with all the comments, and wrote a critical letter to the FCC highlighting how so far, talk of openness has been just talk:
quote:
Skype wanted to bring the comments to the commission’s attention, should they be under the impression that the market was speeding toward openness. What’s actually happening in some cases is carriers are introducing more restrictive terms to service, he said. For example, carriers occasionally cripple services such as Wi-Fi on devices, which affects the ability to conduct VoIP calls with services like Skype. And regardless of how carriers enforce restrictions, the message they send to the market and consumers by imposing restrictions is not a positive one for developers or consumers, he said.
Since last year, Skype executives have been trying to get the FCC's consumer broadband principles (pdf) -- which state you can use any software or hardware you like on broadband networks -- applied to the wireless industry. Last fall, Verizon's promise of an open network made many media outlets weak in the knees, but the promises have thus far yet to materialize. It's speculated that Verizon has been hung up on the testing front, or is waiting to dual-launch the initiative alongside their first Google Android offerings in order to maximize marketing punch.

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broccoli

join:2007-11-29
Portland, OR

2 recommendations

Look who's talking

And just how open is Skype's own network?

funchords
Hello
Premium,MVM
join:2001-03-11
Yarmouth Port, MA
kudos:6

Re: Look who's talking

said by broccoli:

And just how open is Skype's own network?
Skype doesn't have a network, it has a networking application. That's a big difference.

Skype is also not complaining that it is being singled-out here, but that innovation across the board is hurt when carriers limit what can be attached to the network.

Related link: Carterphone (Wikipedia)
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Robb Topolski -= funchords.com =- Hillsboro, Oregon
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broccoli

join:2007-11-29
Portland, OR

Re: Look who's talking

said by funchords:

said by broccoli:

And just how open is Skype's own network?
Skype doesn't have a network, it has a networking application. That's a big difference.
Deep down it's just another P2P network, much like ED2K. There's a central server that tracks the clients, and clients connect to the server to find out which peers they can connect to.

How many third-party clients are there for Skype? Where can I get the API to write my own client?

swhitney2003
Premium
join:2003-06-13
NH

Re: Look who's talking

said by broccoli:

said by funchords:

said by broccoli:

And just how open is Skype's own network?
Skype doesn't have a network, it has a networking application. That's a big difference.
Deep down it's just another P2P network, much like ED2K. There's a central server that tracks the clients, and clients connect to the server to find out which peers they can connect to.

How many third-party clients are there for Skype? Where can I get the API to write my own client?
Last I knew skype was a VoIP service
rpstom
Premium
join:2007-03-08
Cumming, GA

1 edit

Re: Look who's talking

Thats what they want you to think but guess what...All those calls are going over someone elses computer connection using p2p.
I have a t1 and had to stop using them after I noticed that skype was crippling my network. Anytime I had it running it would max out my connection.
Their whole model is based on using YOUR bandwidth and computer not thiers.
I have never used vonage but they have their own technology that does not work in this manner. If I was to ever use voip again it would be them.

funchords
Hello
Premium,MVM
join:2001-03-11
Yarmouth Port, MA
kudos:6

Re: Look who's talking

I'd love to hear an explanation on how Skype managed to max out a 1.5 Mbps (T1) connection. Something else had to be going on.

Yes, it's P2P. Yes, your node can help firewalled connections connect. I've never caught it using more than 10 KB/s when idle.
rpstom
Premium
join:2007-03-08
Cumming, GA

Re: Look who's talking

I wish I could give you the explanation but I am no expert so i won't pretend to be. What I do know is that if skype is running and I check the traffic graph of my router (only me online with no other programs running) it is maxed. As soon as I close skype there is no traffic. This has been replicated many times on different computers.

funchords
Hello
Premium,MVM
join:2001-03-11
Yarmouth Port, MA
kudos:6

Re: Look who's talking

I'm open minded, but I just don't understand why that would be. Is there any chance that traffic graph is dynamic?

jmn1207
Premium
join:2000-07-19
Ashburn, VA
kudos:1
Skype has tons of various 3rd party plugins with millions of downloads. Use of their API can be found in the EULA.

»www.skype.com/legal/eula/

Nobody is claiming to want to rewrite their own wireless network here, they just want to be able to use their own ideas over the existing networks in a fair manner.

Skype adheres to this fundamental belief as can be seen in 3rd party applications used on their protocol.

»about.skype.com/2007/04/skype_ex ··· ads.html

swhitney2003
Premium
join:2003-06-13
NH

+1 For openess

I have verizon as my cellular provider, and sometimes I get sick of their phones having features locked out. At least having an open phone would be a good start for providers.
chemaupr

join:2005-06-06
Alexandria, VA

Re: +1 For openess

same here. was is the point to pay so much for new PDAs when most of the nice features on it are locked out.

Simba7
I Void Warranties

join:2003-03-24
Billings, MT

Re: +1 For openess

One reason I'm with Alltel. I can use Skype on my PPC6800 using my unlimited data plan or when I'm near, WiFi.

..then I have my regular Alltel number.. Not to mention "My Circle".. *sigh*

SSX4life
Hello World
Premium
join:2004-02-13
kudos:3

Re: +1 For openess

EU data carriers are much more open, take a clue guys! You can have your cellphone and go from one carrier to another and not be tied down by red tape and other bullsh!t.

One of the reasons I have my skype phone at home Screw the telecom companies and their duplicitous attitudes (yes duplicitous is a word go look it up).
--
»www.google.com is your best friend... please use it before asking your question.

MrMaster
jetsetter
Premium
join:2000-12-16
St Thomas, VI
said by Simba7:

One reason I'm with Alltel. I can use Skype on my PPC6800 using my unlimited data plan or when I'm near, WiFi.

..then I have my regular Alltel number.. Not to mention "My Circle".. *sigh*
and you know that Alltel becomes VZW Wireless effective Jan 1?

swhitney2003
Premium
join:2003-06-13
NH

Re: +1 For openess

does one lose 'my circle' at that date, or upon a renewed plan? just curious.
EPS4

join:2008-02-13
Hingham, MA

Re: +1 For openess

Alltel.com's Merger Information page claims that you can "continue to count on benefits that will provide you with the real choices and flexibility required to meet your calling needs", including MyCircle. Now, I'd hope that means that MyCircle will be extended across Verizon Wireless, but what it more likely means is that current Alltel customers will keep MyCircle as a grandfathered plan as long as they'd like, until they want to change their plan. It's similar in most cellular mergers IIRC- for example, when Cingular bought the old AT&T Wireless, AT&T customers could keep their plans (though I suppose those on TDMA had to switch eventually).

MrMaster
jetsetter
Premium
join:2000-12-16
St Thomas, VI

Re: +1 For openess

said by EPS4:

Alltel.com's Merger Information page claims that you can "continue to count on benefits that will provide you with the real choices and flexibility required to meet your calling needs", including MyCircle. Now, I'd hope that means that MyCircle will be extended across Verizon Wireless, but what it more likely means is that current Alltel customers will keep MyCircle as a grandfathered plan as long as they'd like, until they want to change their plan. It's similar in most cellular mergers IIRC- for example, when Cingular bought the old AT&T Wireless, AT&T customers could keep their plans (though I suppose those on TDMA had to switch eventually).
I honestly don't know but I assume this to be how it's probably going to work. I'm sure the alltel forum on howardforums.com will give the right answer.
--
One never notices what has been done; one can only see what remains to be done. -Marie Curie

Simba7
I Void Warranties

join:2003-03-24
Billings, MT
said by MrMaster:

and you know that Alltel becomes VZW Wireless effective Jan 1?
Not really. They will still be Alltel for at least 3 more years.
I've been looking into it and Verizon Wireless is borderlining Monopolizing the industry.

MrMaster
jetsetter
Premium
join:2000-12-16
St Thomas, VI

Re: +1 For openess

said by Simba7:

said by MrMaster:

and you know that Alltel becomes VZW Wireless effective Jan 1?
Not really. They will still be Alltel for at least 3 more years.
I've been looking into it and Verizon Wireless is borderlining Monopolizing the industry.
What are you smoking? No, they won't be. Give it six months tops after the merger and the Alltel name goes away. They need to divest some areas for regulatory reasons.

So no, it's not a monopoly in any sense of the word. Monopoly means 1 company. AT&T, T-Mobile, Sprint, US Cellular and several others would like to have a word with you.

Here is a map for your viewing pleasure:
»justsmog.com/divestl.gif

Simba7
I Void Warranties

join:2003-03-24
Billings, MT

2 edits

Re: +1 For openess

said by MrMaster:

So no, it's not a monopoly in any sense of the word. Monopoly means 1 company. AT&T, T-Mobile, Sprint, US Cellular and several others would like to have a word with you.
Excuse me? AT&T was a monopoly at one time (the 80's), and look what happened, it all came back together.
Alltel and Verizon are available almost everywhere. Why the hell would Verizon buy Alltel when they already cover the same area? The reason is so Verizon can have a stanglehold on the industry, since the rest aren't available everywhere.

..but who knows.. They might get broken up like AT&T once did.
--
Bresnan 15M/1M|Mine[P4HT 3.2GHz,2GB RAM,2x1TB HDDs,WinXP]|Wife's[P4 2.4GHz,1GB RAM,60GB HDD,WinXP]|Router[2xP3@1GHz,640MB RAM,18GB HDD,Allied Telesyn AT-2560FX,Kingston KNE100TX,2xDigital DE504,Compaq NC3131,iPro/1000DP,Blitz BWI715,Gentoo]
mmoon6

join:2005-12-03
Marietta, GA

Wild West???

There is no possibility of a "Wild West" scenario if the provider end were set up correctly...
tmc8080

join:2004-04-24
Brooklyn, NY
Reviews:
·Optimum Online
·ooma
·Verizon FiOS

cripple voip packets

voip is killing off the plain old telephone subscriptions as it should, however telcos will draw a line in the sand for wireless broadband... voip over wireless threatens to kill off a cash cow that has the most surcharged telecommunications service in the telco industry (for which consumers roll over and gladly empty their pockets). they keep smart phones that have potential voip application either from being made or at such a high price, it would only go to those who would buy cell phone service anyway because they're so rich, it wouldn't matter.. it's just a value added application.

Verizon will not allow voip to replace cell service. It is their biggest profit ROI service-- almost as good as the hay-days of just after Ma-Bell broke up. Together, Verizon and AT&T are majority carriers in the cell industry. Sprint and Tmobile, and other minority share carriers get the scraps left over.

This still doesn't mean that wireless voip devices shouldn't be made... voip applications are already popping up in portable media players, proprietary wifi phones, gps devices, and probably digital cameras and cars next.
El Gaupo
Premium
join:2006-07-15
Buckhorn, NM

Network needed

Hey I got a great idea build your own network