Skype Integration On Handsets: Threat Or Opportunity For Mobile VoIP Startups?

by admin February 18, 2009 at 7:00 pm

Skype is (finally) teaming up with mobile handset maker Nokia to get its VoIP and IM software program pre-installed on some of Nokia’s devices, as announced at the Mobile World Congress and reported by MobileCrunch. The eBay-owned company had 405 million registered users in total at the end of last year, and Nokia is still the largest handset maker in the world until further notice, so this is a significant deal.

Of course, the operators won’t be jumping up and down from joy over the news.

The first Nokia device to get the Skype integration will be the N97, beginning in Q3 of 2009, followed by (unnamed but reportedly high-end) N-series devices. Leveraging N97’s WiFi and 3G connectivity, users will be able to communicate with Skype-to-Skype voice calls, as well as make mobile and landline Skype calls at reasonable prices. We should note that Sony Ericsson already has some sort of solution for Skype by offering a ‘panel’ for the app on its Xperia X1 device (which runs Windows Mobile 6.1), and Skype already had a mobile ‘lite’ version in beta which works fine on compatible LG, Motorola, Nokia, Samsung and Sony Ericsson phones.

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