Plenty of digital ink has been spilled covering the Vonage IPO. If this interests you I strongly suggest reviewing the articles summarized in a recent Seeking Alpha Post.
Here’s my take:
Verizon, AT&T, old-school telco is supposed to be killed off by ‘free voice’ from VoIP providers or ‘bundled voice’ from cable providers. This never made sense to me, but what is most remarkable that the premier VoIP company (Vonage), supposed to be the ‘tip of the spear’ through the Baby Bell’s hearts, is such a financial train wreck.
The dot-com flashbacks are really getting strong. Last I checked the ‘bricks’ (retail) were solidly beating the ‘clicks’. How many e-tailers other than Amazon.com can you say have really survived the dot-bomb? E-tailing allowed the incumbents to improve their businesses. The only time my wife goes to the mall anymore is to return merchandise she bought online.
Technology isn’t a business unto itself. Technology makes businesses better, provided they put it to use. New companies that represent themselves as technology plays only work out if the other guy fails to execute.
What happens when Verizon and At&T embrace VoIP? In fact, that may explain the recent quote from Seidenberg:
There are a lot of people in the world we don’t serve
It’s beginning to look and feel a lot like 1999. Depending on whether we are on the trailing edge or leading edge of Bubble 2.0, people will remember Google or Vonage as the poster child for irrational tech exuberance.