Skype is getting more aggressive with its mobile roll out, by being friendlier. The VoIP service has released a version for Sony Ericsson Symbian phones, including the Satio, Vivaz and Vivaz Pro. The news comes at a pivotal point in Skype’s progression, as the mobile frontier becomes more welcoming and demanding of additional communication tools.
According to Skype’s release,
“Make free Skype-to-Skype calls to your friends and family on Skype anywhere in the world* Save money on calls and texts (SMS) to phones abroad Send and receive instant messages to and from individuals or groups Share pictures, videos and other files Receive calls to your online number See when your contacts are online and available to call or IM Easily import names and numbers from your phone’s address book Skype for Symbian will run on any Sony Ericsson smartphone using Symbian 1, the latest version of the Symbian platform.”
For Sony Ericsson, the additional smart phone support means more perks for consumers mulling over a phone with a Symbian OS. Nokia has been leveraging Symbian similarly as a lure to developers, particularly in a time when Apple and Google are dominating the US mobile phone market.
And for Skype, the accelerated shift towards the mobile realm also buys the company some time. Looking to further establish itself in any number of industries, Skype has spent the past couple of years dealing with infrastructure build-outs, wavering valuation numbers and strong growth. While Skype hasn’t really gone anywhere, its had quite a journey in maintaining its relevance in the grand scheme of things.
John thinks it’s a good acquisition target for Google, especially as it seeks additional platforms on which to establish its products. Skype has taken several strides in the past year to become more dominate in the mobile market, which is something it’s better able to do with the available smart phones and use of wireless data plans.
Both Google and Apple have tipped a hat towards the future of mobile video chat, with Google Voice and FaceTime. Apple’s Face Time is a more direct threat to Skype’s mobile initiatives, though there’s word that Skype is seeking a cooperative deal with Apple towards creating an application for FaceTime. Beyond mobile phones, however, Skype is also looking to better reach consumers, with word of pre-installed apps on PCs and televisions.