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Skype's Verizon exclusivity waning, app coming to Android Market

A Skype PR rep confirmed to SkatterTech today that an Android app is coming to the Android Market, never mind that it's currently exclusive to Verizon. In an e-mail, the rep wrote:

"We will be bringing a direct to consumer app to the Android marketplace later this year. This application will be available for all consumers globally to download regardless of carriers. (i.e. similar to how we offer the iPhone app today)."

None too soon, and it might get even better, as this Skype "consumer app" (as opposed to ...?) may feature video chat -- though the rep backed off that claim, apparently. Either way, it's another reason to avoid last-minute surprise fees from other video chat apps that you thought were going to be free. [SkatterTech] Thanks, Jeremy.

  • f'ing Qik... I am so glad that other companies are coming out and providing something. Looking forward to Skype or Fring. Both look to be free. Time will tell.
  • can you do it on wifi
  • FRING anyone?
  • +2 to Phil. I'm going to call you the Velvet Hammer from now for the way you you just smacked Qik but made it soft and subtle lol. Qik gonig down.
  • Now if only it could be removed from the phone without flashing a new ROM.
  • I'm still trying to figure out what kind of exclusive was this. Skype was already available for Windows Mobile, iPhone and even PalmOS I beleive. So Verizon is not the first to get it... And wasn't theirs a paid version while all the other mobile OSes got it for free.
  • I wouldn't mind paying a one time fee for a good Video chat app, but $5 a month is ridiculous. Downloading Fring as soon as I get my phone next week.
  • The Skype app for the iphone pretty much is useless. You have to arrange a call via a text message because the thing does not support notifications of incoming calls. (And of course no run-in-the-background). So FAIL. Hopefully the android one will have both of those features as well as allow skype voice over 3G. Apple's ok with that. AT&T's Ok with that. Skype dropping the ball. Fring voice quality can not compare to Skype.
  • I like what Fring has done and been doing, their UI is bad and looks like some 3yr old made it but what real kills it is the terrible quality of calls. People had told me but i thought it can't be that bad so I called my own voicemail from Fring then from Skype on desktop and skype obviously was crystal clear but Fring was all muffled and you could barely understand what I said, that is not really viable. Its more like a cool tech proof of concept not very usable in real world. I wish i was tho! I'm hoping skype for Android will have good call quality, its the whole point of having it. Been waiting for it since I got my Nexus One, sick of waiting but what choice do I got? Still got my iPhone 3GS laying around on a dresser so I'll probably check out OS4 and new skype when that comes out but its hard to leave Nexus One and Android, love it too much.
  • "Verizon exclusivity." Interpretation, Skype developed a "version" of skype (customized for Verizon) which is exclusive to Verizon. I believe some folks are under the mistaken impression that Verizon has skype for Android all to themselves. Either way, Verizon better play nice, Google purchased the company (Global IP Solutions) that makes the video engine used by skype, Google video, iChat, AIM, Yahoo, Webex, etc.
  • This would be a nice addition if you have the Evo 4G
  • Looking forward to it!