VoIP uber Evangelist, Jeff Pulver in his personal blog explained that Marketing will be the key effort that the carriers will need to put behind their efforts to convert customers to Voice over IP.
Give Pulver credit for taking on the cause. His FreeWorldDialup which enables free calls to other FWD subscribers and as a promotion, free calls to traditional land lines hs been red hot lately with nothing more than a word of mouse promotional effort. No individual has done more ever to promote Voice over IP and if anyone gets what's important to make the technology thrive, it's Pulver.
But, while Pulver emphasizes the carriers will need to market to acquire and retain customers, to go one step further, another point that is so important. It's QoS. As Pulver rightfully brings out the need for applications and services, which really is where the money will be made, but without major attention on Quality of Service, these services when delivered to customers who are not techies---as. techies always allow for bugs, crashes and are willing to be paying beta testers, the general business customer and consumers will not tolerate rebuffering, latency, jitter found currently with VoIP. So while free and cheap is good, quality is better.