AT&T ends iPhone VoIP restrictions; Skype set free

AT&T is allowing voice over Internet protocol (VoIP) services over its 3G network for Apple's iPhone. Previously, VoIP was limited to a Wi-Fi connection.

AT&T is allowing voice over Internet protocol (VoIP) services over its 3G network for Apple's iPhone. Previously, VoIP was limited to a Wi-Fi connection.

In a statement, AT&T said:

AT&T today announced it has taken the steps necessary so that Apple can enable VoIP applications on iPhone to run on AT&T’s wireless network. Previously, VoIP applications on iPhone were enabled for Wi-Fi connectivity. For some time, AT&T has offered a variety of other wireless devices that enable VoIP applications on 3G, 2G and Wi-Fi networks. AT&T this afternoon informed Apple Inc. and the FCC of its decision.

This news is good for Skype, which had been hampered on the iPhone. Skype already applauded the move.

The next question: Will this move affect Google Voice. Technically, Google Voice, the source of a big dust-up between AT&T, Apple, Google and the FCC, isn't VoIP, but don't be surprised it Google Voice for the iPhone arrives shortly. Verizon Wireless touted that its Android devices would support Google Voice.

AT&T said the VoIP move is due to a "fresh look" at capabilities for the iPhone.

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