Tuesday, June 27, 2006

FREE SERVICES://GBuy and Jajah to launch

Microsoft and Vodafone plan to add (or expand) a new revenue stream: advertising. In itself, this requires changing to a new business model - no easy task. But it can be done, look at newspaper companies succesfully launching freebies. For users, this is good news: free services.

Enter Google and Jajah.

Google has a long history, or rather a strategy, of turning for-pay services into free services, supported by ads. Look at such services as Gmail and San Francisco WiFi. Now the Wall Street Journal adds some details to the upcoming GBuy trial launch (June 28?). The interesting thing is, the standard tariff (higher than PayPal's) could drop to zero for AdWords clients. The overlap with eBay sellers could be considerable.

Jajah (web-activated VoIP from regular phones and handsets) launches a free service, the Free Global Calling Plan. Free calls, fixed or mobile, for registered users. There is one catch: a 'fair use' policy, "which simply asks people to try to keep their calls within a reasonable amount of minutes. To this end, JAJAH will monitor the number of hours per individual user per day to assure that no single person damages the overall service."
I am curious to know how many minutes that actually is. The average phone call is something like 3 minutes for fixed and 2 minutes for mobile.

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