White Paper on Internet, E-Commerce, VoIP, Mi-Card and E800 Directory
By Ifay F. Chang Ph.D.
E-Commerce is a new word created by the Internet phenomenon but e-commerce is a euphemistic word for the new business revolution in human history extending from the agricultural, industrial (mechanic-electric), and electronic, computer, and information revolutions. Both business to business (B2B) and business to consumer (B2C) applications are advancing with Internet infrastructure and its universal accessibility, making "on-line" a daily activity as evidenced by e-form, e-mail, e-search, e-shopping, e-transaction, etc. E-commerce is self-transforming by adopting technological innovations and absorbing new methodology of conducting businesses.
An unsuspected world-wide economical recession occurred at the dawn of 21st century has made doubter of Internet and e-commerce rebuffing the business revolution. Over-expansion of telecommunication industry was pointed as the proof of Internet bubble and Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) was cited as a disappointing killer application. The toll figures of dot com meltdown has not only scared the common folks but also the venture capitalists. However, the VoIP's slow growth has the wrong strategy to blame as seen in Net2Phone and DialPad. VoIP's intrinsic efficiency and application productivity are yet to be understood; VoIP will extend from voice, video and to value over IP with innovative applications.
Numerous promising applications of VoIP are listed to show future trends. Mi-Card is an innovative application utilizing only mature technologies including the basic VoIP. Mi-Card, a credit-card-sized marketing information, compact disc card, offers an interactive and persistent marketing, advertising and customer retention medium and a no-cost calling card experience over the Internet, hence providing an invaluable e-commerce tool. Ease of use, eliminating pitfalls and taking advantages of web sites and VoIP and avoiding content obsolescence are virtues of Mi-Card, which make it an incomparable, cost competitive and effective advertising and marketing information medium.
Mi-Card presents an opportunity to become a killer application for telecommunication and Internet when coupled with the business model of e800 Directory. E800 Directory enlists business phone numbers and converts them to equivalent 800 numbers on the Internet represented by the business or product name. The no-cost calling card experience is represented by a web calling icon on the e800 Directory listing or on the business web page or through the use of a business Mi-Card. The impact of e800 and Mi-Card is demonstrated through the analysis of the vulnerable market value of 800 number ($40B US) and yellow page phone books ($15B WW). Low risks and small capital requirement in implementing Mi-Card and e800 Directory make their business one of the most attractive ROI case.
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