Voice Management: Skype Looks to Grow in Places Smartphone Use is Less Common
February 17, 2011
By Charles West
, TMCnet Web Editor
Voice Management and software applications company Skype (News - Alert), has its eyes set on developing markets for its mobile business as it seeks to grow its presence in places where smartphone use is less common.
While Skype is pretty much available on every smartphone handset out there, the company still plans to offer its new service off of mobile carriers; providing another high-speed option for customers to use. In achieving its goal, Sravanthi Agrawal, communications head for Skype Mobile for Europe, the Middle East and Africa said, “Skype has developed a mobile client for lower-end phones that do not have Wi-Fi or 3G capabilities.”
What also needs to be noted is in many regions – such as the Middle East, Africa and Central Asia – 3G networks aren't built out yet.
The way high speed connectivity is obtained through smartphones is, carriers install software on their servers to handle communications, which with high-end phones is done on the handset, said Mark Douglas, a Skype Mobile product manager. Unfortunately, this practice conserves more of the phone's battery.
Discussing how the company would accomplish such a feat, Douglas said, “Instead of relying on Wi-Fi or 3G connections, Skype would piggyback on the (phone) operators' PSTN (Public Switched Telephone Network) infrastructure, which is more stable.” The deal is good for operators because it will remain uncompetitive, since the Skype client will run on all platforms.
Skype is targeting countries in the Middle East and Latin America and countries such as Mexico and India. The idea is for people to turn down calling cards in favor of its service and buy SkypeOut minutes, which allow users to call landlines and mobiles.
Once again, operators will benefit since those mobile customers will need to buy data packages in order to use Skype over the cellular network.Charles West is a Web Editor for TMCnet. Prior to joining TMC (News - Alert) Charles worked with many gadget oriented sites that included running his own blog (TheTrendaholic.com) and Smartphone column for examiner.com. To read more of his articles, please visit his columnist page.
Edited by Charles West