Skype For iPhone 2.0 Delivers 3G Calling On AT&T

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News Posted: Sun, May 30 2010 7:26 PM
A good bit of time has passed since Skype launched a dedicatedapplication for Apple's iPhone OS. Last March, diehard VOIP users wereelated to finally have their favorite calling program available withjust a single finger tap, but one huge problem remained: you stillneeded a Wi-Fi hotspot in order to make or receive a call. Since thattime, Skype on mobile calling was updated to support 3G calling, andwhile phones on Verizon Wireless supported it, the iPhone appmysteriously never did. Even last week, making a Skype for iPhone callrequired Wi-Fi, despite that limitation being removed elsewhere.

Now, that's different. A weekend 2.0 update has enabled the Skype foriPhone program to support making/receiving Skype-to-Skype, Skype Out,etc. calls over 3G, and this seems like a huge, huge move by AT&T.The carrier has been very careful to not open up native iPhone tetheringyet as they try to carefully manage their 3G network congestion, andwhile this move probably won't add a lot of demand to the network, it'scertainly yet another reason for you to tap into 3G.

But here's the catch: "Skype-to-Skype calls on 3G will be free for atrial period which willrun until the end of 2010." Details of exact pricing setups arecoming soon, but we're pretty much assured that pay-access is coming for3G calling (though Wi-Fi calling will remain free). Of course, callsover 3G won't be nearly as clear and "solid" as those over the Web, butat least it's now available if you're in a pinch. The 2.0 Skype app canbe downloaded now from the Apple App Store for free.

"Using Skype on 3G has been the number one request among our iPhonecustomers. This new version is a great step towards enabling ourcustomers to take and use Skype everywhere they go”, said RussShawGeneral Manager for Mobile, Skype. “Using Skype on iPhone withoutbeingrestricted to the availability of a WiFi network will open up newwaysfor Skype customers to stay connected and make free or low-costcallswhenever they want, wherever they are in the world.”

“We have a group of young tennis players that are constantlytravellinginside Spain and around the world. One of them is my daughter, shetravels a lot and we use Skype to communicate because it’s easier,faster and cheaper. The change of having Skype on the mobile phonehasbeen crucial for us. Before we had to look for a computer in thetennisclubs and hotels and it was a real problem because it was verydifficultto find one,” said Alexei Starkov, the physical/fitness coach oftheFederación de Tenis de Madrid. “Tennis is an individual sport andwhenyou travel by yourself at times you feel very lonely. Now withSkype foriPhone also allowing for calls over 3G you can call anytime andanywherewithout having to find a WiFi spot.”


Additional new features of the Skype for iPhone applicationinclude:

  • Near CD-quality sound for Skype-to-Skype calls using wideband audio on iPhone 3GS or 2nd generation iPod touch and onwards.
  • Enhanced call quality indicator, which will help customers choose the best moment to call.
  • Improved start-up time
  • Rapid access to the dial pad from the home screen

The new version is compatible with the iPhone, iPhone 3G, iPhone3GS,iPod touch and iPad. Skype requires iPhone OS version 3.0 andabove.

Calling functionality is available on iPhone, iPhone 3G, iPhone3GS and2nd generation iPod touch onwards. iPod touch requires acompatibleheadset with a microphone.

The Skype for iPhone application is available to download for freefromthe App Store on iPhone and iPod touch, or at www.skype.com/go/iphone


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kid007 replied on Mon, May 31 2010 5:23 PM

I love this app to bad that they will start charging and the end of the year...

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Even if they charge I still think this is a must have. I love Skype. Never thought I would see them going over AT&Ts network though.

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