It took about eight years but it seems like SMS has finally come to home phone service
In 2004 in a piece about VoIP 2.0 I wondered why home phone service hadn’t progressed and suggested that they allow instant messaging/SMS. It’s obvious the market would love such a solution and Comcast will be one of the first to bring it to market. In fact, now included with its ‘Xfinity Voice Unlimited Nationwide’ plan, customers get access to free text messaging from the Xfinity Mobile app for iOS and Android devices. In addition these devices the apps allow the ability to receive transcribed voicemail messages that can be read instantly. Both features also can be accessed online via the Xfinity Connect web portal.
Here is what I said eight years ago:
I am not talking about MP3 over IP. I am suggesting the development or rebranding of a device to lure customers into buying a service. When I look at my home wireless phone and compare it to my mobile phone I can’t believe they were both sold in the same century. Home phones do basically nothing, while today’s mobile phones can record calls, download and play music, boast speakerphone functionality, have built in SMS, IM and e-mail clients, can take and e-mail photos, videos, and voice messages, can operate in a walkie-talkie fashion, can support bluetooth, can be a PDA, can store thousands of contact records, can have memory expansion slots, can store appointments, a to-do list, and more. Surprisingly the prices for typical cordless phones and mobile phones aren’t that different.
I believe that teenagers would give up their Xboxes this Christmas if they could buy a killer WiFi VoIP phone that let them talk for an unlimited amount of time, conference, IM, speakerphone, bluetooth, etc. I am just waiting for the brilliant service provider who brings it to market first.
You may also recall at MWC Neustar discussed the fact they power such solutions – they said we can expect to see many more announcements like this. I know all land line carriers will feel the pressure to follow suit and soon, VoIP service and SMS will likely be as closely bundled as wireless and SMS.