Listening to Bill Gates, Google CEO Eric Schmidt, Niklas Zennstrom, CEO of Skype and Cisco CEO John Chambers and moderator Geoffry Moore (Crossing the Chasm) in Davos at the World Economic Forum.
The podcast is a rich vein of deep thinking, too much to get into here but I will say the first thing that jumped out at me in regards to the dating industry was when Zennstrom said that Skype would be all about click-to-call form the web to initiate discussion between buyers and sellers. Aside from Google is getting into this space as well with Adwords, this got me thinking about what dating sites have in place to keep daters from using their Yahoo, AOL and IM chat clients for anonymous calling? Almost all chat clients have some sort of VOIP feature and there is inherent value to anonymous calling but what is the economic model that supports paying for it when you can get it for free?
“Membername is superflyguy, same on Skype/AOL/MSN.” the net-savvy men and women do this presently, but not at a large enough scale that sites take the time to effectively filter out the external reference. If members can do this, why would agree to use an integrated chat client?
Userplane has owned the chat side of the dating space for quite some time and new entrants like Vivox and some of the click-to-call vendors are poking around taking the temperature of the industry. I’m wondering if their reception will be as cold as it was for the background check providers, who could offer an immediate new revenue stream whereas the chat side of things is more of a stickieness factor.
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