Skype offers phones for Web and conventional calls

Skype, which has popularized Web telephone calling, on Monday marked progress in extending its low-cost calling services beyond computers to new types of phones.

At the Consumer Electronics Show here, Skype, a unit of online auctioneer eBay Inc., said it was introducing 12 new phones and related phone accessories in conjunction with telecommunications equipment suppliers.

The models include a dual-mode phone from Netgear Inc., the SPH200D, which enables users to place and receive both traditional phone calls and Skype Internet calls from a single cordless handset. The device connects both to a standard telephone wall jack and a broadband Internet router.

Unlike many existing Skype-ready phones that need to be tethered to a personal computer, the new model requires only the phone and broadband cable connection.

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