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Microsoft Free VoIP App May Kill Mobile Operators

With little fanfare, Microsoft last week revealed it would release a free VoIP app that will let Office users to make free calls on Wi-Fi phones running Windows Mobile software. If I were a mobile operator, I'd be kissing billions of revenue good-bye right now.
The Business reports that the new application and service will be part of a mobile version of Microsoft Office Communicator that will be released this year.

The free app, it says, "will take the form of a voice-over internet protocol (VoIP) application that allows Office users to make free voice calls over wi-fi enabled phones running Windows Mobile software." The report adds that the app will also access e-mail, PowerPoint and other Office applications.

Wi-Fi phones right now aren't particularly common, so in the immediate future, there won't be a great impact. But ultimately, Wi-Fi will be everywhere. Just about every house with more than one PC will have a Wi-Fi network. Every major metropolitan area will have a free or for-pay Wi-Fi network blanketing the area.

With Wi-Fi ubiquitous, Wi-Fi phones will follow. And with the ability to make free Wi-Fi calls, why bother with a cell phone plan?

If I held any mobile phone stock, I'd be selling right now.