3's free Skype mobile calls go live

The long-awaited 3 Skypephone has launched today across Australia.

3 Skypephone

The 3 Skypephone includes a 2 megapixel camera.

in brief The long-awaited 3 Skypephone has launched today across Australia.

Users of the phone will be able to make free Skype to Skype calls and instant messages to other users all over the globe. The phone is free with a plan or costs AU$179 for prepaid customers, with 4,000 free Skype to Skype calls and 10,000 free Skype chat messages included each month. The phone can also make normal mobile calls using 3's usual service.

Skype is not a new addition to 3, with Skype services already bundled into 3's X-series, but according to 3, the new phone will make Skype telephony as simple as pushing a button. Nick Ingelbrecht, research director at Gartner told ZDNet Australia recently that the introduction of the Skypephone may eventually lead to a reduction in call costs as VoIP mobile calls put further downward pressure on cellular voice call margins.

3 has big expectations for the phone: finance director of 3-owner Hutchison Whampoa Frank Sixt said last month that within one to two years the company expects to have sold millions of the Skypephones.


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