Sunday, July 16, 2006

Will Hack force Skype to Open Protocols?

With the alledged hacking of Skype's proprietary protocol is Skype's best long term tactic now to publish that protocol and enable developers to create alternative clients and hooks in other products? Will the efforts of the Chinese techies, who have built their own client to operate over the Skype network, open the floodgates?

Skype's first thoughts will be around panic, verifying the story, possible legal action and taking technical steps to protect their intellectual property and avoid instability on their network.

Should Skype turn this threat into an opportunity? Think of the extra users that 3rd parties could bring. Skype are probably the only VoIP player to be in a position to build a formidable barrier to entry by being integrated directly into a myriad of apps. If they can control the accounts, and therefore secure revenues, then this could be the opportunity of their lifetime.

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