10 Reasons why Skype Maybe the Biggest Web 2.0 Winner!

ReadWriteWeb has an excellent list of reasons why Skype maybe the biggest Web 2.0 winner.  I have to agree, the real winners are hard to tell until the end, speaking of which, is there going to be an end to Web 2.0?

  1. It has revenue, about $500 million in 2008. Ahem, only in the strange world of Web 2.0 is that considered remarkable. I love using Twitter, but without sustainable revenue their future has to be in question.
  2. It is profitable. We’re talking “high-teen margins,” according to eBay’s CEO at the Accel Symposium. That does put it in a different league. It means they can survive the harshest of economic climates. If Facebook is having to raise money in these markets their model must be fundamentally flawed, which means their time as an independent company maybe limited. To control your own destiny, you need to be profitable.
  3. Skype’s growth is accelerating in a tough market. Skype is publicly talking about growth rates of 30% to 40%. That’s not bad in an economy where flat is the new 30%. Skype has the perfect recession pitch: cut costs now! This shows in its most recent numbers. In the last quarter, Donahoe told us that Skype-to-Skype grew 73% and Skype Out grew 63%.
  4. Disruptive technology. Disruptive technology is an over-hyped term, but in this case it really fits. Skype’s peer to peer technology enables them to dramatically under-price the competition and still make money. New users don’t cost much money – compare that with Facebook and YouTube. Even better, each new user that comes on improves the service for others – the core P2P proposition.
  5. Viral marketing. Skype is the perfect viral business. I have lost count of the number of people I have told about Skype, for the simple reason that I want to communicate better/cheaper with them. Many of them are doing the same.
  6. Massive market with vulnerable incumbents.$2 trillion is a lot of money. That is the size of the global telecom market. As to vulnerable, how many people feel so loyal to their telephone company that they won’t switch to get lower prices? Yes, when Skype dominates the market it won’t be worth $2 trillion any more. Even if it is worth 25% of that, say $500 billion, that is OK for the dominant player. Faced with the Skype threat, incumbents have a horrible innovator’s dilemma. To really match Skype will destroy their current business even faster.
  7. Just wait until it bites into those cell phone bills.Skype on mobile phones – really native Skype you can use for free wherever there is WiFi – has been possible technically for some time. This has been held back by the mobile operator’s head lock on the device manufacturers. At some point the damn will break. Consumers pent up anger over nickle and diming cell phone bills will ensure that a real alternative will be welcomed.
  8. Skype is totally mainstream. This is not about being hip or early adopter. Just show the video conversation to anybody with loved ones in distant places. You will see the surprise and amazement that makes it seem like magic.
  9. It is a sticky service. Google still gets my business because they are better than the alternatives. But switching to an alternative will be totally simple. When somebody suggests using something other than Skype, I resist. I have my contacts in there, know exactly how it works and have integrated some external tools. Skype can continually add new features to make the experience better as our hunger for communication is pretty well limitless.
  10. Skype can do an IPO. For anyone younger than 30, we should probably spell that out: Initial Public Offering. We keep being told that the IPO market is moribund because of Sarbanes-Oxley. Baloney! The IPO market is moribund because we have lacked profitable high-growth companies that move into huge markets.

via readwriteweb

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