Overall, the popularity of IP (Internet protocol) telephony will quadruple
this year alone, to about 9.5 billion paid minutes by 2001. That number is expected
to jump to 332 billion minutes by 2005, according to IDC.
Those numbers don't factor in free services or PC-to-PC voice communication,
just paid PC-to-telephone usage.
A lone holdout, Net2Phone competitor Dialpad Communications, will continue
to offer free domestic PC-to-telephone calls, says David Gilcreast, Dialpad
spokesperson. However, the 40 percent of its 12 million customers who are outside
of the United States will soon have to pony up 2.9 cents per minute for dialing
U.S. phone numbers as part of its new "dialpadworld" pricing scheme.