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jehowe
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 07, 2007 4:01 pm    Post subject: Verizon vs Vonage Lawsuit Reply with quote Back to top

In connection with current patent infringement suit, Verizon is asking the jury for $197 million in damages, and also asking that Vonage be forced to pay Verizon $4.93 per customer per month if they want to continue using Voip technology!!!

http://yahoo.reuters.com/news/articlehybrid.aspx?storyID=urn:newsml:reuters.com:20070307:MTFH90614_2007-03-07_18-48-58_N07252266&type=comktNews&rpc=44

I can't believe a jury would give them all of it, but they clearly want to put Vonage out of business.

[edit: subject ]


Last edited by jehowe on Wed Mar 07, 2007 4:38 pm; edited 1 time in total
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navydavy2001
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 07, 2007 4:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

I'm suprised it took this long for this thread to appear. Lol

(A word of advice, if you don't want this thread deleted, change the subject. The admins will not be pleased with the first acronym.)

It will be very interesting to see where this goes. If Verizon wins, I smell an appeal.

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galion
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 08, 2007 6:41 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

Verizon is facing a very serious problem (in their minds) because they are losing the protection the government has given the old copper line telephone companies for years. They have enjoyed years of providing service with government guarantees of profit to help pay for their investment in hardware. They kept this profit controlled by owning most of the cellular companies with little challenge.

Judge Green thought he was helping by breaking up AT&T. It was only a hidden agenda to break apart the stock and the stockholders won. The majority of traditional telephone business is controlled on a state level and Judge Green's decision, in my opinion, did not help much. Now we see the old AT&T reforming and GTE having joined with one of the baby Bells.

Now enter a new technology that can ride on existing hardware, Voip. The state regulatory agencies are at a loss. I spoke to some commissions in person and they admitted they don't even understand Voip yet. The FCC did say they wanted to support the expansion of new technology which helped, but they are still subject to politics and are mostly taking a hands off approach. I recently made a call to the FCC about a phone company charging long distance on a local number to Vonage. They said call the state. The state said they didn't know what to do.

But, Voip is still very powerful with competitive pricing. The phone companies originally priced their Voip high, but Vonage comes along with a very competitive price. I remember reading somewhere that Verizon has lost a tremendous amount of traditional business to Vonage. They lost me forever.

So what can they do? They look to the method most people go to roll the dice. What have they got to lose? Why do you think they didn't take on one of the other VoIPs? Could it be most of the big ones are owned by traditional phone companies? The only big fish available was Vonage. So they want to set an example. And our government will sit back and let them put a monkey wrench in technical advancement.

Now I am not against someone making money off their ideas in the form of patents. But you can't tell me that this one smells fishy. Why did they wait until now? And why did the court open the definition of the patent wide enough to expose all of Voip? If you look closely not only is Vonage at risk, but the technology may be at risk. Verizon is just using their government sponsored profits to punish the sore on their foot. The government should let things lay at this point. In fact, competition is already working. Look at the pricing of Verizon and AT&T's Voip. Vonage will have to work hard to stay in their competitive lead and it already shows.

Haven't you noticed most cable companies have better customer service now? The agencies have already told the cable companies that they have to carry competitive Voip companies because Voip is just data on the lines. I guess the cable companies don't have enough government in their back pocket. So they are waiting anxiously to see Verizon's results. Verizon will need them until they can get their fiber installed everywhere, which will not happen any time soon. So they are not exposed.

Verizon has already done its damage by making the investors think Vonage could be damaged. Now we find out if the government really wants to help advance technology and the people or if big business controls the lead.

Personally, I believe Vonage will be around for a long time in one form or another. Voip will stay around and one day the big bundles of copper wires will fall. Now we just find out if the government puts on a tax for us to help Verizon who already gets guaranteed income from the regulatory agencies.

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mjstraw
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 08, 2007 8:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

I find it interesting that just about the same time the lawsuit heated up, Verizon started running a heavy ad campaign about how their lines are "always available" even during power outages (with tiny print at the bottom about how duration during power outage will vary, probably to cover FIOS battery backup life)

About 6 mos ago I watched an interview with the CEO of Verizon where he indicated they were not spending any money on their copper infrastructure or switching fabric and that all $ was being spent on their cellular network.

Mark
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SeanKH
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 08, 2007 3:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

Verizon has won the suit per CNBC.

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navydavy2001
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 08, 2007 3:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

The ticker started going INSANE at about 3:11pm EST. Verdict was not for the full counts or damges, but still a chunk. Plus royalties.

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galion
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 08, 2007 3:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

So thanks to the fine folks at Verizon we may get 5.5% tacked onto our Vonage bill. Sorry Verizon. I will gladly pay a 5.5% premium to stay away from you after my experiences. The sad truth is our government is going to allow this to happen.

Look at history. GTE owned an Internet company that they spun off after merging with Bell Atlantic to form Verizon. The company was called Genuity. It went bankrupt. Genuity was bought by Level 3 Communications. Level 3 Communications resells services to Vonage and provides a large bulk of Internet services to our country. Verizon should have kept Genuity, but they stumbled and now we get to pay.

Well, the war isn't over yet. I'm sticking with Vonage and look forward to either this ruling getting overturned or Vonage finding an alternate method (even when the judge tried to make that impossible).

Now mark my words. Verizon won't touch AT&T or the cable companies. They wanted to deal punishment. Sorry Verizon. You have just made me more determined. As for the $58 million, I will do my part to recruit Vonage enough Verizon customers to make that a small problem.

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mjstraw
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 08, 2007 3:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

Interesting that Verizon supposedly owns some patents, yet their own Voip offering stinks. [ooh, my first ****s. Hopefully "stinks" is OK :-)

But like so much of what they do, it isn't really theirs. They are just re-selling someone's rinky-dink service.

Mark


Last edited by mjstraw on Thu Mar 08, 2007 3:47 pm; edited 1 time in total
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jehowe
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 08, 2007 3:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

I just wonder if this will embolden Verizon to start shaking down the smaller Voip providers, who probably have less cash and legal representation than Vonage does.

Vonage will appeal for sure, but they had better be ready to switch to their backup as they are one court request away from having a judge shut them down. Did they buy DPL's Voip patents yet?
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NITRO1250
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 08, 2007 3:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

I got rid of Verizion land-line phone service because they were costing us over $60 per month with no long distance service and just for a few local calls. I am very happy with Vonage and I hope that this lawsuit goes sour for Verizion!
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