Archive for the ‘VoIP’ Tag

One Step Closer to Web-based Skype

We’re not quite there yet, but it’s good to know that at least somebody’s working on that web-based Skype client that I’ve been pulling for. The German-based Shape Services, a company with experience developing Skype mobile applications, announced yesterday a web-based, iPhone-formatted version of itsĀ IM + for Skype, reports GigaOM.

Of course this means very little to most people because it doesn’t offer true Voice over IP yet — and honestly, who uses Skype to text chat anyway? The app, free in beta for a limited time, seems to accomplish voice chat by calling your phone number to connect you with the other party, meaning you’re still paying for the airtime.

If we see a Skype client with VoIP using wifi, it might actually make sense for me to buy the phone (without activating the AT&T service, of course). Then I’d get a lot more mileage out of that year’s subscription to SkypeOut.

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Web-based Skype client

Nowadays, you can do just about anything in a browser. You used to need an application devoted to email, one for word processing, one for calendars, one for radio stations. With services like Meebo, you can even chat in your browser window.

It’s about time for Skype to catch up and offer a 100 percent Web-based version of the widely popular VoIP application. It would be nice to be able to boot-up Skype in Firefox from any computer and call up any of your contacts (or phone numbers, if you have a SkypeOut account, like I do).

But the big reason is to capture the iPhone market. Imagine anyone being able to make free voice chat calls whenever in range of a wifi spot. This becomes even more attractive for me, being stuck in a Verizon Wireless contract for at least another year. I would definitely buy an iPhone and use the non-AT&T activation method if I could make calls at any Starbucks. (And let’s face it. Starbucks is everywhere.)