December 17, 2007
Ribbit Introduces Web Telephone Development Platform
By Anshu Shrivastava, TMCnet Contributing Editor
Ribbit has introduced a technology platform expected to allow developers to put Web telephony in everything from business software to popular social network sites like Facebook (News - Alert).
The company is also planning to sell its own services directly to consumers in the first quarter of 2008 and is working with more than 600 outside developers who are using its technology to create their own voice applications, according to a press release.
Ribbit say the software serves as an interface between anything from Web sites, e-mail and instant messaging to mobile or regular phones, and developers do not need to be telephony experts to build services with Adobe's Flash software.
“A developer can take telephony out of our sandbox and bring it to where you live,” Crick Waters, Ribbit's vice president for strategy and business development, said in a Reuters report.
For example, he pointed out that about four developers are using Ribbit to build services that consumers could incorporate into their personal pages on Facebook. He said that these services could let members make and log calls and check their voicemail in transcript form without leaving Facebook.
Ribbit latest introduction is not the first of its kind. At present, eBay owned Vonage (News - Alert) and Skype already offer Web calling. However, Brett Azuma, analyst at Ovum, stated that Ribbit's openness to outside developers and its plan to offer new types of services could help it stand out.
“We're talking about a new type of phone company,” Azuma said in the Reuters report. “The other Web telephone companies such as Vonage are offering the same old stuff with a different technology.”
Azuma thought that the business applications will be the ones that are most attractive because this will save time for users. Azuma said, “The consumer applications are a little less clear. I don't know what consumers are willing to pay for yet.”
Anshu Shrivastava is a TMCnet Contributing Editor. To read more of Anshu ’s articles, please visit his columnist page.
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