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Good Morning, Vietnam: Country Wakes Up To VoIP

While agrarian Vietnam remains firmly stuck in the Third World, its approach to telecommunications is very definitely in the First World, said an executive of the firm that is supplying much of the Southeast Asian country's Internet-phoning gear.

"Vietnam is embracing this VoIP technology well-beyond its neighbors," said Yonah Lloyd, of Net2Phone Global Services, in an interview. "The Vietnamese are really pumped up to be using VoIP." Net2Phone supplies much of the country's VoIP gear and services to the state-owned Vietnam Datacommunications Company (VDC), which is growing 200 percent a year.

Lloyd, who is Net2Phone's vice president of International Business Development and Marketing, believes the Vietnamese market will continue to explode at least for another 18 to 24 months. With just 1.6 million customers out of a population of about 80 million, VDC's 65 percent of the data-services market bodes well for Net2Phone and others working with VDC.

In Vietnam, Net2Phone has partnered also with U.S. -based VITC, which has telecommunications operations in Asia.

Net2Phone, a hosted provider, utilizes its central platform to provide a full suite of telecommunications services, including residential broadband, calling cards, and VoIP services complete with Wi-Fi for public call centers and Internet cafes. Lloyd noted that the company has a major hub--mirrored to its New Jersey home hub--in Hong Kong.

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