Not content with revolutionising home phone calls, Skype is now looking to sink its teeth into the mobile world in a deal with operator 3.
Trials for Skype calls on 3 phones will be carried out over the next few months with a view to a worldwide and UK launch later this year. The news is sure to worry other operators like Vodafone, which is trying to simultaneously keep cash rolling in from current networks while pushing us all over to 3G.
In a bold move, 3’s deal will offer you the ‘all you can eat’ pricing structure that Skype currently offers its home users – free calls to other Skypers anywhere in the world, with costs for internet access and calls to other networks.
The first Wi-Fi Skype phone was also announced at CES in January [story here] and Nokia is currently working on a model that will have the software built into the handset.
Although other manufacturers are set to follow, wily old 3 has ruled out the possibility of ‘dual-mode’ handsets such as the Nokia 6136 [story here] that will let you access mobile networks and Wi-Fi hotspots for truly free phone calls.
This all means that the new mobile version of the software will be great for calling other Skypers and international chats, but using traditional networks will probably work out cheaper for your other calls.
Still, with extras like Instant Messaging, group chat and voicemail, it looks to be a very welcome bonus to have your mobile. More news as we get it.
Skype ends up on a host of phones