If you haven't heard all the FCC vs Apple/AT&T/Google drama yet, you should head over to the iPhone Blog and catch yourself up with official statements, interrogative questions, and more about why Apple "hasn't approved" (read: banned) the Google Voice application for the iPhone.

Though the whole fiasco doesn't directly apply to us Android users, it is interesting to note that USA Today has accused Google of being plain hypocrites throughout this process. Citing Google's own 'banning' of popular VoIP application Skype to their Android Market, USA Today claimed that Google and Android are hardly as open and benevolent as they claim to be. If you remember, Skype for Android is actually a 'Lite' version that isn't capable of true VoIP calls, rather routing phone calls through traditional phone networks thus eating away precious (read: expensive) cell phone minutes.

Gasp. Is Google falling away from their 'Don't be Evil' motto and joining Apple as the grim reaper toward quality applications? Did they really ban a full-featured version of Skype? No. Completely False. Wrong. Not even close. According to the father of Android, Andy Rubin:

“Here are the facts, clear and simple: While the first generation of our Android software did not support full-featured VoIP applications due to technology limitations, we have worked through those limitations in subsequent versions of Android, and developers are now able to build and upload VoIP services"

So basically USA Today got it completely wrong and that it wasn't a Google decision to ban Skype from Android but rather a technical shortcoming. Also, if Skype truly wanted to develop a full featured application for Android and for some odd reason wasn't allowed in Android Market, Android users could still download the application via alternative channels. Android Market is hardly the only solution for third party applications like the iPhone App Store is. And for that, we can be thankful.


Reader comments

Google Never Banned Skype from Android Market


USA Today is retarded. It's a matter of time before Android swallows up Apple OS. I'm typing this from a Macbook.

I hope Skype get round to making a proper app for Android soon - the Lite version is really resource hungry and just slows the whole phone down while it's running. Thankfully Nimbuzz is available now, which isn't too bad.

I have been an ardent Skype user for a while, now after getting HTC Hero with android, I am considering going back to Windows Mobile. Not that I am unhappy with the phone or the platform, but I am restricted in my important choice -> Making VOIP Calls over Wifi network..

The current Skype Lite really S..k...s, what is the point of spending on a local call then on your Skype call? When wifi is available?

If Google never banned it from android market, how come there is no app for Skype?

Verdict: The current Skype Lite is an eye wash, as VOIP = Skype...

The Skype-Lite for my G2 hissed me off just a little bit. But, that was after the T-Mo phone tech support lady told me the myTouch / Andy-G2 could NOT and can NOT do the UMA that HTC got blessed by the US FCC. Hmmm. THAT WAS after the sales droid told me that for $10 more a month after my $25/month improved 3G (whoops not much 3G here) and 1500 mins Family Plan I would have UNLIMITED voice over wifi (UMA). Glad I did not add that extra $120 per year for my T-Mo NOT UMA enabled Andy G2 phone.

Thanks to their business scruples I left All Too Terrible some years back. Is T-Mo under educating their sales droids or emulating a t t. or, just tired of customers ?

Neat little phone. Now how do I unlock it?

google never banned any skype app, skype is very slow moving in the mobile sector only this week has symbian got a native wifi skype app they have also been stuck with "skype lite".
skype will eventually develop an app with the same functionality as the iphone app ie to be used over wifi, hopefully it will be very soon (as we all want it) but don't count on it until then we're stuck with the "lite" app and 3rd party solutions