Friday, December 2, 2011

Telefónica takes another step over the top with fonYou

For a major operator, Telefónica is bold. We  wrote in October about Telefónica and its moves into digital, from buying – and making use of – American OTT voice provider Jajah to creating an entire stand alone division called Telefónica Digital.

Now Telefónica is the first operator to a mobile app from Spanish cloud telephony provider fonYou (the service has been in testing since the spring). Telefónica is calling it Segunda Línea Movistar, and it is available only in Spain.  From the article on the launch:

[The] XtraLine solution is now available to mobile operators as a white-labelled iOS and Android app … The solution … enables mobile operators to provide consumers with a second phone line bundled with a range of rich services like visual voicemail, call registers and advanced voice screening.

There is a lot of value to this:  a second number on your SIM card, protecting your primary number, and managing services “in the cloud.” 

Still, it is a move into OTT, which might make many operators nervous.  Here is a quote from fonYou CEO Fernando Núñez-Mendoza from the article:
“The initiatives that we see that are quick and courageous are coming form the mid-sized operators,” he said. “The large ones need a lot of time and processes to make decisions. That’s bad news for them; they have still not re-engineered the innovation process.”
Telefónica has made prominent its intentions to take the OTT players on in the market and is perhaps not typical of the large operator, Núñez-Mendoza said.

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