More than 9 million U.S. households had at least one active voice-over-Internet Protocol (VoIP) user as of the end of the third quarter, according to In-Stat. That represents 7.9 percent of U.S. households, up from 6.5 percent at the end of Q2.
Client-based providers are the market leaders, according to In-Stat. Skype continues to dominate with 2.1 million active households, while Microsoft gained more than 1.1 million active households as of the end of Q3.
In-Stat has Vonage and Time Warner Cable leading the facilities-based VoIP market, with the former claiming an estimated 1.7 million subscribers and the latter with 1.6 million active households. In-Stat calculates Vonage has fewer subscribers than does Telegeography, which credits the company with 1.95 million U.S. subscribers (see The creeping tide).
In a recent survey, 49 percent of current residential VoIP users reported that they had discontinued a traditional (non-VoIP) phone service when they got their VoIP services, including nearly 12 percent of respondents who report that their only VoIP service is client-based. This suggests that the rapid growth of users for client-based services like Skype and Yahoo! Messenger with Voice is also having an impact on incumbent service providers, In-Stat said.