Does Google's VoIP service make them subject to regulation?

Updated: January 07, 2011

Google is arguing that while they offer a VoIP service they are not a carrier and should not be subject to the same laws and regulations as phone companies. Since they now offer a calling service through Gmail they are technically a phone company? Debate is now raging as to whether Google should be regulated like other companies providing similar phone service.

A group of analysts commented on the issue in a recent eWeek article. At the heart of the issue is what is Google is really offering? The internet giant provides an end point for calls through its free software based messaging platform, but broadband services need to be provided by phone companies themselves. One analyst in the eWeek story believes that if the FCC does decide to put regulations on Google and classify it as a phone service provider then Google could just drop its calling feature rather than put up a fight.

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