Posted by: Olga Kharif on November 28, 2006
I have been slamming Vonage in posts for months now, for various good reasons. But now, I want to praise the Web-calling company for a really innovative new service. Parents buying presents for your kids, listen up: Vonage offers you a direct line to Santa.
Here’s how this service, called CallSanta, works: Kids can use a Vonage line to dial 1 (700) CallSanta. There, they can listen to a recording from Santa and leave a message reciting their long gift lists. Those voice mails to Santa are then forwarded to their parents’ e-mail boxes, so the Vonage account holders know exactly what to put under the tree.
To me, this is a prime example of the type of cool services Web-calling can offer. So far, we haven’t even tapped into Voice over Internet Protocol’s (VoIP) amazing potential. Most Web-calling companies have simply offered the same boring services that telcos have offered for years. Now, that’s slowly starting to change. CallSanta is just the beginning.
In the future, I imagine using Vonage to leave a voice mail shopping list, which Vonage would then forward to my neighborhood grocery store, which will fill out the order. My doctor might phone a prescription into my pharmacy, which will e-mail me when the prescription is ready. That e-mail might contain a voice file, in which my doc explains exactly how to take the pills. I can think of a million cool services like that. Indeed, VoIP is about to become much more than a substitute for traditional phone service.