How we did on our predictions for 2004

* Hindsight is 20/20

Well, here we are again with another new year - so, as is our custom, we’ll review our predictions we made a year ago for 2004 and in our next newsletter make some predictions for 2005.

Last year, we predicted AT&T would come out in a big way for VoIP. With AT&T’s successful deployment of CallVantage, we hit that prediction on the nose.

Next, we predicted that three major companies would ditch their PCs in favor of server-fed, display-only desktops. If they have, they’re keeping pretty quiet about it so we’ll set this prediction on the back burner.

We predicted the Supreme Court would take a stand on VoIP taxation. Looks like the FCC beat them to it, but there are important decisions about VoIP taxation winging their way through the court system.

We correctly predicted the wide-scale adoption of IP PBXs and the acceptance of softphones, although it looks like the softphone acceptance may have more to do with remote access to the corporate voice system (or to Skype) than with an on-campus love-fest for the enterprise.

On the wireline/wireless front, we accurately predicted the introduction of dual-mode 802.11 and cellular phones, and we could otherwise tell you that we’ve seen it with our own eyes - except then we’d have to shoot you.

We also correctly identified unified messaging and wireless LAN as important drivers for VoIP deployment.

We’re not sure if we hit or missed the target about earning frequent flyer miles for using a video-over-IP conference, but we’ll get back to you if we hear one way or the other.

And finally, we didn’t see or predict the big effect the UNE-P ruling would have on consumer VoIP (to AT&T and MCI’s detriment). Perhaps after 20 years of FCC and court rulings, we just became numb to the whole issue. Nor did we predict the rapid competitive threat from cable companies to incumbent carriers.

All in all, we’ll give ourselves a grade of B-plus for 2004, but then again if we could get straight A’s on the scorecard, we’d probably be wealthy retirees and not writing newsletters.

Next time, we’ll make our predictions for 2005.


Copyright © 2005 IDG Communications, Inc.

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