Tuesday, July 26, 2005

The Real Truth Behind Verisign's Opportunity

There's a story today on BusinessWeek.com Verisign's new personality that highlights how they are turning into a mobile entertainment heavyweight.

VeriSign is best known for verifying the legitimacy of e-commerce sites. And, as the keeper of .com and .net domain names, it connects Web browsers with the sites they're looking for some 14 billion times a day...

But it's fast becoming a heavyweight in mobile entertainment, including games, sports and news updates, and, of course, lucrative ringtones...that's not all

Verisign's content business isn't all about ringtones, and it has other offerings. For instance, when a Sprint customer takes a picture on his or her camera phone and forwards it to another phone or an e-mail address, VeriSign is in the background, making the connection and taking a cut

VeriSign generates millions of dollars a year in revenue for mobile carriers, and in many cases, handles the back-office billing for the carriers from people ordering games, ringtones, and news or sports updates

Ringtones and other creative apps are fast transforming the staid old software company into a mobile-entertainment heavyweight

There's a big piece missing to the story though. Wired magazine pointed it out directly in their latest issue with this editorial piece from Bruce Sterling Dear Member of RFID Industry

"twin Godzillas of the US economy - the Defense Department and Wal-Mart - plan to use your little wonders to track their enormous inventories. As makers and users of RFID gear, you're putting unprecedented horsepower behind the wheels of commerce.

With the capacity to label 296 individual objects, you're well on your way to giving everything that matters its own unique ID and IP address. It won't be long before the Internet is joined by what MIT has christened an Internet of Things"

If there are 14 billion site lookups a day, imagine how many lookups there will be when an RFID tag gets a URL. There are 3b unique barcodes today. All 12 oz cans of Coke have one, but there are millions of those cans.

When an RFID tag is added to EACH can, think of the traffic that runs through this "registry".

You know what company will be in charge of giving everything its own unique ID and IP address?

A completely different way of looking at this company now.


Anonymous said...

I have been watching this for months now. Can’t help to think about SAIC who sold Network Solutions to VeriSign for 15+ billion dollars in 2000. What will WordRegistry (being developed by SAIC/NeoMedia Technologies) be worth? Mind boggling.

Think of all the URL's registered? NameRegistry will be mamoth.

Will be interesting to see ALL the dots being connected here in the near future.


Larry said...

Taking what anonymous said on a little different trac are you thinking Verisign will be doing their own Word Registery and going around the SAIC/NEOMEDIA start up?

Scott Shaffer said...

Verisign will responsible for assigning URL's to RFID tags, the next generation of barcodes. Every RFID tag will have its own website.

As far as I know, there is no "registry" assigning a URL to a barcode out there.

The point I am trying to make is that Verisign could stand to gain from the massive registry once RFID tags get IP addresses.

I see the association you're trying to make though.