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Free Skype Client Lands On the iPhone 150

CNet is reporting that a free Skype client will finally be landing on the iPhone this week. Unfortunately some are saying that it seems many of the "critical" pieces of functionality are still missing. While the Skype engineers claim their native client will offer better audio quality (because there is no need to route through another server and transcode audio) they are still missing text messaging, file transfers, and integrated voice mail. Since the iPhone does not allow for multiple programs running concurrently, many are expecting existing multi-function apps like Fring and NimBuzz to continue their reign at the top.
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Free Skype Client Lands On the iPhone

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  • by sfcat ( 872532 ) on Monday March 30, 2009 @02:21PM (#27391451)
    The gphone has always had a skype client. This makes me wonder how carriers can continue this type of control of the cell phone platforms. Openness seems to have more of an advantage on the cell phones because of the tight control the telcos seem to try to enforce there. Is apple repeating the same mistake they made with the original Mac (trying to control both the hardware and software) vs android (runs on multiple types of hardware)? Or will the telcos desire for control keep the software closed?
  • by nvrrobx ( 71970 ) on Monday March 30, 2009 @02:23PM (#27391481) Homepage

    I don't know about the "any other wireless provider" thing.

    Look up UMA on T-Mobile. My BlackBerry Curve 8320 supports it, so I use my WiFi for voice calls when I'm at home.

    AT&T may not want you to do that, but T-Mobile seems to be okay with it.

  • by AndrewNeo ( 979708 ) on Monday March 30, 2009 @02:38PM (#27391647) Homepage
    I'll just keep using Skype with my Windows Mobile phone, then, which, by the way, lets me use it on the data network. (I've never tried, because we only have EDGE in my area) I'm not bashing either Skype or Apple (I love my iPod Touch, though it's a 1st gen so Skype wouldn't work with it anyway) but I still have my PSP as another Skype-capable device, too.
  • Only need Wifi (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Crispix ( 864691 ) on Monday March 30, 2009 @02:43PM (#27391727)
    The complaints about "shortcomings" are misguided.

    I only need Skype in wifi hot spots. Domestically, I use my cell phone minutes for phone calls. If I need to call internationally from my iPhone, I use Skype-To-Go, their relay service.

    I only need VOIP when I'm out of the country. I'm not going to use iPhone data roaming because it is too expensive. But there are plenty of free wifi spots around the globe.

    Fring has been so unreliable for me, an official Skype client has me very excited. When I'm in Cabo or Canada (or anywhere overseas) for a weekend, and I want to call home, this is where a Skype client is perfect! Find a wifi hot spot and dial away!
  • by Wellington Grey ( 942717 ) on Monday March 30, 2009 @02:52PM (#27391861) Homepage Journal

    Skype will only use the WiFi network, not the 'unlimited' ATT data plan so you will only be able to use it while tethered to a local hotspot, not out roaming in the wild.

    You've got to start somewhere. Telcos are not easy companies to change. But if Skype gets a small toehold, people will get used to their free phone calls on their mobiles. Soon, when the market penetration gets high enough, they'll start complaining about being tethered to one spot. Hopefully, that will forces the telcos to (slowly) change.

  • Re:hate to say it (Score:3, Interesting)

    by FictionPimp ( 712802 ) on Monday March 30, 2009 @03:20PM (#27392253) Homepage

    We are doing a test rollout of blackberries, iphones, and windows mobile devices.

    I get blackberries brought to me regularly because they are screwed up or the person does not know how to do what they want to do. I have not had a single iphone or windows mobile device brought to me.

  • The gphone has always had a skype client.

    No, it doesn't.

    What it's got is a little application that makes a standard telephone call to a Skype server, which gateways your call onto the Skype network. Which means you use up mobile call time as well as Skype calltime. No VOIP is involved.

    Right now we're unlikely to see an aftermarket Skype client for Android because you can't do aftermarket native code on Android yet. (You can only do native code on Android if it gets built in when the phone OS image is made, which means it has to be done by the phone provider... and I'm sure Skype are working on that right now.)

  • by Anita Coney ( 648748 ) on Monday March 30, 2009 @03:54PM (#27392649) Homepage

    In all seriousness , the reason the iPhone and the iPod Touch do not multitask is not related to hardware or software. The sole reason Apple enforces the no-multitask policy is to ensure that multiple running apps don't drag down the system. Apparently, WinCE has a tendency to be bogged down when running multiple apps and Apple wants to avoid that.

    http://www.roughlydrafted.com/2008/03/13/iphone-20-sdk-the-no-multitasking-myth/ [roughlydrafted.com]

I've got a bad feeling about this.