I am looking forward to Tuesday …
… For Cisco, Nortel, Avaya and the other companies that make telecommunications equipment, this Tuesday is a sort of D-Day.
That day, Bill Gates plans to introduce Microsoft’s invasion into their business, with a new line of software for what the company calls “unified communications.” That means it is meant to integrate all the ways that people talk to each other: voice, video, instant messaging and more elaborate forms of online collaboration.
If it is successful, this software will accelerate the shift of communications from specialized devices and networks onto Internet-based networks, desktop PCs and microprocessor-based servers. And that, in turn, could challenge the economics of the remarkably profitable telecommunications industry.
There is a great deal of brave talk from existing players about being both a partner and competitor to Microsoft, but in fact they should be about as glad to see Microsoft as the minicomputer industry was to see the upstart three decades ago.
On Tuesday Mr. Gates and his lieutenant Jeff Raikes will focus on marketing three software packages: Microsoft Communications Server 2007; a client software application dubbed Microsoft Office Communicator 2007; as well as a collaboration program, Microsoft Office Live Meeting.
Now, he argues, the economics of the microprocessor and the Internet will alter the way we communicate.
“As more and more of our communications and entertainment is transmitted over the Internet thanks to e-mail, instant messaging, video conferencing, and the emergence of Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP), Internet Protocol Television (IPTV), and other protocols, a new wave of software-driven innovations will eliminate the boundaries between the various modes of communications we use throughout the day,” he writes in a memo that will be distributed as part of his presentation to be given in San Francisco on Tuesday. …
Source; New York Times