Jaxtr vs. Skype vs. Jajah

Posted by: Olga Kharif on August 28, 2007

Another day, another dollar, another Web-calling company gets funding from former Skype supporters. This morning, Jaxtr announced it raised $10 million from five venture capital funds, three of which — Draper Richards, Draper Fisher Jurvetson and Luxemburg-based Mangrove Capital — were early investors in Skype.

While I feel like rolling my eyes (How many more Web-calling companies can possibly get funded? The space is already crowded), it seems like Jaxtr is on to something: Its registered user base has been doubling every month since its March launch. Most recently, it jumped from 500,000 to 1 million.

When I tried the service, it was slightly easier to use than Jajah. And while Skype just announced a low-cost calling plan, basic Jaxtr, for now, is free. And you can use Jaxtr with MySpace, Facebook and LinkedIn (of course, Skype and Jajah are all over social networks, too). How do you think the three services compare?

Reader Comments

Moshe Maeir

August 28, 2007 4:50 PM

Have you figured out, why VCs fund companies that use their money to pay carriers for calls and give them to the public for free??
For a few hints read this www.flatplanetphone.com/wordpress/?p=278

Thomas Roth

August 28, 2007 5:04 PM

In contrast to Jajah and Skype, Jaxtr has no business model, how are they gonna make money and for how long can they burn through their VC money?

Jaxtr CEO Konstantin Guericke stated himself that 75% of their customers are coming from China, India and Sri Lanka - "business comes out of geographies that don't hold value, because customers there are loyal only to your offer of 'free' or 'cheap' – when something cheaper comes along, those customers are gone." as Michel Cerda points out.

I don't know how long Jaxtr is gonna be around!?

Konstantin Guericke

August 29, 2007 9:47 AM

Actually, 80% are outside of the US, which is reflective of the Internet population. Major sites (Microsoft, Yahoo, YouTube, Wikipedia, Skype, etc.) that have broken through the early-adopters in Silicon Valley who try out anything once, all tend to have an audience that reflects Internet usage around the world. And countries like India are the top growth markets for mobile phones. Recently, I read that India passed the mobile market in the US even in absolute numbers, so we think it's going to be an important market for us.

Tech Untangled

September 1, 2007 11:44 PM

One of the biggest issues that Skype has is in penetrating the cellular market. Jaxtr seems to have a solution to that and I see a lot of value in making it easy to enable calls to/from mobile phones. I think the series A investment by former Skype investors is a sign that Jaxtr may start to eat Skypes lunch.

amruta

September 23, 2007 1:36 PM

But jaxtr does not work for prepaid cell phones...which is a disadvantage.

Henry Morrison

November 26, 2007 12:30 PM

Can anyone tell me if JAXTR is safe to use? Will my phone number be hijacked to take international calls where I would have to foot the bill.
How can JAXTR give international telephone calls free. What is the catch?

localvore

March 28, 2008 7:32 AM

i have voicemail so that i dont have to talk on the phone, and i rarely do, and i dont have a cell because i enjoy being where i am. No ads, no charges, and free in the most meaningful sense of the word. happiness isn't necessarily the next gadget.

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Bloomberg Businessweek writers Peter Burrows, Cliff Edwards, Olga Kharif, Aaron Ricadela, and Douglas MacMillan, dig behind the headlines to analyze what’s really happening throughout the world of technology. Tech Beat covers everything from tech bellwethers like Apple, Google, and Intel and emerging new leaders such as Facebook to new technologies, trends, and controversies.

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