VON Europe - Day 1 - No Limits

Just finished Day 1 here in sunny Stockholm. Today was pre-con sessions, so things don't get into full gear until tomorrow. Definitely looking forward to Jeff's opening remarks tomorrow, as well as perspectives from the leading players you'd want to hear from in Europe, namely Skype, Nokia and Ericsson. I'll be posting on these tomorrow.

Was only able to catch one session, titled Plug and Play Telephony. The focus was on peer to peer, and how this technology is starting to find its legs in enterprise markets. I strongly believe that P2P has the same kind of disruptive capacity as VoIP does. Two of the strongest voices for small business applications were on the panel - Mahshad Koohgholi of Nimcat Networks, and Dmitry Goroshevsky from Popular Telephony.

Their messaging was consistent in the sense that SMBs are not well served in terms of IP solutions, and P2P is a great premise-based approach. Enterprises will be drawn to P2P because it is simple to deploy, economical, and delivers a rich feature set. The value proposition is straightforward at face value, but as the moderator, Bob Emmerson said, "it sounds too good to be true". Certainly, at face value, P2P promises a lot, and if it can deliver, the upside is pretty exciting.

My take from the audience was healthy skepticism, especially for issues such as billing and security. These are certainly legitimate concerns, but the panelists feel these problems are in hand.

There's more to the story, but the venue is shutting down now. Will finish this thread tomorrow.

One last thing, though - watch for some interesting news tomorrow about Popular Telephony and Skype - this is a good indicator of how P2P and VoIP is finding common ground for business applications, and will be a great proof point for how well the technology really works.

And as Dmitry says, there are no theoretical limits to P2P!!! If that can be really proven, we'll definitely have a lot to think about. OK, they're cutting the connection, gotta go now...