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Communications Microsoft The Internet

Microsoft to Launch "Skype Killer" 294

TheChillPill writes "Microsoft is due to announce the launch of a service to rival Skype following the acquision of VoIP provider Teleo. While a crude version of VoIP is already included in most Instant Messaging programs, Skype is currently the only provider to allow calls to landlines and cellphones. Microsoft intends to launch the service by the end of the year. "
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Microsoft to Launch "Skype Killer"

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  • Yeah whatever... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by It doesn't come easy ( 695416 ) * on Wednesday August 31, 2005 @08:34AM (#13445031) Journal
    In the old days, an announcement like this would have been an instant death blow to the competing company. I am happy to note these days it is a relative non-event. This is not to say Microsoft's entry into a market cannot have a significant impact. But gone are the good old days where Microsoft simply had to announce some vaporware to stop a competitor in their tracks. From that perspective, things are better today than they used to be.
    • Re:Yeah whatever... (Score:3, Informative)

      by wpiman ( 739077 ) *
      Skype is currently the only provider to allow calls to landlines and cellphones.

      DialPad allows users to make calls from their PC to landlines/cellphones.

    • by BackInIraq ( 862952 ) on Wednesday August 31, 2005 @08:38AM (#13445076)
      In the old days, an announcement like this would have been an instant death blow to the competing company.

      Yeah, now it's only a death blow when Google does it. :)
    • by PhYrE2k2 ( 806396 ) on Wednesday August 31, 2005 @08:41AM (#13445105)
      I am happy to note these days it is a relative non-event.


      You're thinking like a geek. $10 bucks says most people's mothers who use MSN already (like those that use Yahoo, ICQ, AOL, etc) will use the service that pops up and says "Would you like to make a voice call to 'Your son in Italy' for only $10/mo". Probably saying to themselves: "A monkey is asking for my credit card number... That seems fair."

      This is the world we live in. We talk about marketing being just FUD, but it's really not. People buy whatever people sell. I've seen funny stuff on infomercials that people obviously buy (a vacuum that sucks up your hair and cuts it with a blade inside the vacuum attachment- this was in the 'cut your hair at home' stage of the late 80's).

      People will buy what seems reasonable and what you tell them to buy. Ask any marketing student. 99% of the market is uneducated as to what Skype is. Vonage has only made such headway through significant marketing, which M$ could outdo anyday... and who wouldn't switch to a M$ product that already runs their office, home, and play communications needs?

      M$ integrates an ad and the feature into MSN Messenger, and they'll instantly have a LOT of people. No having to download additional software, no setup, no confusing additional software that may or may not hurt your computer... just works.

      -M
      • by It doesn't come easy ( 695416 ) * on Wednesday August 31, 2005 @08:54AM (#13445195) Journal
        True. Microsoft has the brand advantage and the built-in market reach via Windows. However, this is not to say that Skype is out of the picture without recourse, which is my point. While Microsoft is not very innovative (in the sense of coming up with brand new ideas), they are very good at copying and improving. Skype has to compete or they will disappear. In the old days, however, they would not have stood a chance. Today, they can remain a competitor if they earn that right. And clueless consumers (e.g. you and me) may end up with better technology because of real competition instead of being forced to take whatever Microsoft chose to market.

      • This is the world we live in. We talk about marketing being just FUD, but it's really not. People buy whatever people sell. I've seen funny stuff on infomercials that people obviously buy (a vacuum that sucks up your hair and cuts it with a blade inside the vacuum attachment- this was in the 'cut your hair at home' stage of the late 80's).


        outch I instantly imagined a handfull of painful (or realy painful) way of misusing this gadget.. :P
      • I think you are both thinking like geeks. I am intersted in getting vonage and I think it is a really cool technology. But my mom just thinks vonage is a company with funny ads selling phone service, she doesn't know what VOiP is and doesn't care. I would feel safe in saying that most non-geeks don't know, don't care, and probably won't drop thier pots line for some time (a couple of years or more.)
      • I just thought about a wrinkle to the VoIP plan for Microsoft. The issue is all the Baby Bells and their relative local monopolies. Right now there is a law that allows consumers to have local phone with one company and have DSL with another. BellSouth easily got an injunction because the argued that it couldn't be the same everywhere. So therefore, it was somehow a better idea to take more money out of consumers pockets. The problem is that DSL is all but dead because you get the choice of the Local Monopo
      • Talk about thinking like a geek...

        I can just picture it now: Okay, first give the monkey your credit card number, now you need to plug a headset into your computer and, oh yeah, you'll need to be sitting in front of your computer to make phone calls.

        Given that all my non-techie friends (that would be pretty much all of my friends) have relegated their computers to basements, dingy corners, etc., I really don't see this as a big draw. Now, if MS were to start providing some hardware, a la Vonage, so that you
      • Since they constitute a monopoly, it would be illegal to use their dominant market position regarding operating systems to leverage their presence in the VoIP market. Hence they can not incorporate something like this and have it shipped with windows.

        This is what happened with the case where the EU forced them to start selling a version without the media player.
    • Re:Yeah whatever... (Score:5, Interesting)

      by eMartin ( 210973 ) on Wednesday August 31, 2005 @08:43AM (#13445112)
      We'll see what happens when they include it with Vista and make it a default for VOIP or whatever.
    • I'm tired of using "killer" for this stuff in general. It never really is a "killer" application, no matter what it is. Once an application is so wide spread that rivals need to be called "killer" it's rather obvious that that's not going to happen. Unless the dominant company is asleep at the switch that is. Otherwise, it's just marketing buzz. Skype is not going to be killed any time soon, all thats going to happen is Microsoft spends money.
      • Re:one more thing. (Score:5, Insightful)

        by CaymanIslandCarpedie ( 868408 ) on Wednesday August 31, 2005 @08:53AM (#13445181) Journal
        I agree Skype is going to be around (I use it and love it), but I think they really need to think about becoming SIP compliant. My biggest grip about Skype is I cannot call friends who use other VOIP clients, but those same friends who use different clients can still call each other because other services are SIP compliant.

        Will MS's product be SIP (standards based)? The Teleo beta products was, so I'd assume so but I haven't heard anything for sure and with MS you never really know.
        • Prediction: Microsoft will embrace and extend like they have always done in the past. They will have a SIP compliant client, they will add extra (and compelling they hope) features that will only work between their client, the client will be free with Windows. Behind the scenes Microsoft will sell some built in functionality aimed at business. It may be in the form of solicitation (i.e. the EULA says you must agree to some form of marketing) or ads or whatever. In other words, Microsof provides feature
          • I'll shorten that up for you.

            MS will steal ideas from apple and google and then find a way to make their product incompatible with the rest of the world.
        • Re:one more thing. (Score:5, Insightful)

          by aminorex ( 141494 ) on Wednesday August 31, 2005 @11:31AM (#13446560) Homepage Journal
          Skype does not use SIP becaue SIP *SUCKS*. Its NAT and firewall behaviour is atrocious. Forget SIP. Any client using SIP is almost useless in the real world. SIP is what has prevented VOIP from taking off as it should have for the past 10 years. It's a bad protocol design. Dynamic server port numbers is StuPId.

          Skype is good because it JUST WORKS. Skype should add a SIP bridge, though, to leverage the SIP installed base, like they leverage the POTS installed base.

          Now if Skype switched to the IAX2 protocol used by Asterisk, that would rock. But NO SIP PLEASE.
      • It's simply that press releases and lazy journalists need a simple soundbite to compare the product/service to something that the average reader will understand, and "killer" sounds more impressive than "rip-off" or "-a-like".
      • What about Orrin Hatch's idea of computers that explode when they detect copyright infringement?

        THAT is literally a killer application.
    • Re:Yeah whatever... (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Iriel ( 810009 )
      True, and sometimes it doesn't go away, but simply changes. Last week, Google was going to take over all of VoIP as we know it and everyone else would pale by compare. Sometimes, I think it's just titles like this that annoy me more than anything else when someone is proclaiming a product killer when in this case, American VoIP is already in partial danger (last time I checked) due to having issues with 911 calls. I read that the shutoff was extended, but in either case, if someone could let me know whether
      • I'm not going to worry about somebody trying to dominate all VoIP when it can't even serve as an (American, at least) alternative to landline or cellular telephone.

        Here in the UK, "naked DSL" (DSL without the POTS connection) is not available - I think until BT are forced to implement naked DSL at a reasonable price the VoIPPSTN gateways won't be able to seriously compete. I mean, how many people are going to be interested in a VoIP service (especially one which probably costs the same as BT for the actual
        • As far as I know, in the States, we don't get naked DSL anywhere either. There's cable and I think a rare few places even have access to fiber lines, but our copper lines are so outdated that most of the nation's DSL services, by definition, aren't fast enough to be considered 'broadband' (at least 3MBs, last time I checked but I could be wrong so please don't flame me).

          So even though everyone I know with DSL (including myself) has to pay for a phone service to get a constant connection, some of us get a bi
          • Re:Yeah whatever... (Score:4, Informative)

            by FireFury03 ( 653718 ) <<slashdot> <at> <nexusuk.org>> on Wednesday August 31, 2005 @09:34AM (#13445493) Homepage
            but our copper lines are so outdated that most of the nation's DSL services, by definition, aren't fast enough to be considered 'broadband' (at least 3MBs, last time I checked but I could be wrong so please don't flame me).

            Technically, most modems above about 600bps are "broadband" (in the true, uncorrupted sense of the word). Marketting dweebs corrupted the technical meaning of the term and the ITU-T have now officially classified broadband speeds as anything greater than the speed of a PRI (1.5Mbps in the US, 2Mbps in Europe). That said, the advertising standards agency here in the UK has ignored all definitions of broadband in the past and gave NTL a bollocking for using the term "broadband" in reference to 128Kbps cable modems (which use broadband modulation). The advertising standards agency meanwhile think it's fine for everyone else to market 512Kbps DSL lines as "broadband" despite them nowhere near meeting the ITU-T criteria.

            barebones phone service only for the purpose of internet, and then use VoIP for actual calls.

            The problem is that BT's "bare bones" package isn't that bare-bones - it's still a reasonably pricey monthly charge and has "inclusive minutes", so once you're forced to pay that then VoIP isn't actually that cost effective. I guess if I had relatives abroad then it'd be cost effective to use a SIPPSTN gateway to call them, but then the UK VoIP gateways would still not be getting any of the market share because I'd be using a foreign gateway to get the best rate.
          • Just a comment...when you hear someone talk about the US expanding broadband access consider that it is up to the individual country to define what constitutes broadband. For the US (as defined by the FCC), it's a connection that provides at least 200 kbps one way. The other direction can be much slower. For comparison, Canada defines broadband as at least 1.5 mbps both ways. I believe the UK defines it as at least 256 kbps one way.

            In any case, almost all DSL connections in the US would be classified br
          • You can get naked DSL in the US, but you have to get it from a company that uses unbundled local loops. One example would be Covad [covad.com], semi-famous for being SpeakEasy's last-mile provider.

            SpeakEasy offers a number of "no phone service required" options. It is, naturally, more expensive than the cheapest DSL service your phone company offers coupled with their cheapest phone service, but then your phone company's DSL is, in all probability, crippled anyway.

    • In the old days, an announcement like this would have been an instant death blow to the competing company. I am happy to note these days it is a relative non-event.

      Yeah, with pungent vapor like this, who needs Vic's Vapor Rub?

      Chances are if this actually does come out, it will be late, vastly inferior to Skype, bug ridden, and have all kinds of "Big Daddy Gates wants to monitor your communications" crap built into it (for those Microsoft apologists who are about to collectively scream "that's unfair bashing
    • That's all I've got.
  • why not wait? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by spoonyfork ( 23307 ) <spoonyfork AT gmail DOT com> on Wednesday August 31, 2005 @08:37AM (#13445058) Journal

    Microsoft intends to launch the service by the end of the year.

    Why not wait until the end of the year to make an announcement when it will be news? Anything more than that is free advertising for something that doesn't exist. *sigh*

    • Re:why not wait? (Score:2, Insightful)

      by lbmouse ( 473316 )
      The release was more about the acquisition of a new company.

      Now give the PR guys a break! They leak these types of press announcements at very deliberate and strategic times... usually right before their job review.
  • by willm5 ( 592275 ) <will@NOSpam.willmcgugan.com> on Wednesday August 31, 2005 @08:38AM (#13445064) Homepage
    "Skype is currently the only provider to allow calls to landlines and cellphones."

    Thats not entirely accurate. British Telecom have an add-on to Yahoo messenger that allows calls to landlines and cellphones.

  • Review (Score:4, Insightful)

    by millahtime ( 710421 ) on Wednesday August 31, 2005 @08:38AM (#13445074) Homepage Journal
    Does anyone have any review info on Teleo? I would expect the service to be of simial quality to what Teleo did with a Microsoft look.
  • Wasn't there a web site that let you place calls from a VOIP client to a landline, free, about 4 or 5 years ago? I remember it had a short queue, and showed some ads in the dialer application (presumably to fund the service), but it was a fairly clear signal and sounded fine even with my crummy $20 headset mic rig. I can't remember what it was called though... I saved a ton of long distance money through it in college.
    • Wasn't there a web site that let you place calls from a VOIP client to a landline, free, about 4 or 5 years ago? I remember it had a short queue, and showed some ads in the dialer application (presumably to fund the service), but it was a fairly clear signal and sounded fine even with my crummy $20 headset mic rig. I can't remember what it was called though... I saved a ton of long distance money through it in college.

      Net2Phone, perhaps? Started out pretty decent, as far as free apps went. Usually only
      • and if I remember correctly they limited you to 10 minute calls

        To clarify, this was of course referring to free calls. For a pretty reasonable rate (4 cents a minute, I believe, which was pretty darn good at the time), you could make all the calls you wanted for as long as you wanted.
  • Wake me... (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday August 31, 2005 @08:40AM (#13445091)
    ... when it runs on Mac's and Linux boxes. Or, runs on anything other than soon-to-be-released-honest MS operating systems.
    • > when it runs on Mac's and Linux boxes

      For some strange reason, I first read that as
      "when it runs on Marx and Lenin's boxes".

      I just had to share.
  • Only Provider? (Score:5, Informative)

    by jmt(tm) ( 197664 ) on Wednesday August 31, 2005 @08:41AM (#13445095) Homepage
    Skype is currently the only provider to allow calls to landlines and cellphones.

    Oh, really? What happened to all the H.323 and SIP based services? Did [telio.no] they [sipgate.de] all [sipphone.com] vanish? [dialpad.com]

    • Re:Only Provider? (Score:2, Interesting)

      by zornorph ( 63846 )
      If you run Asterisk, you should also check out fwdOUT http://www.fwdout.com/ [fwdout.com], through which you can get FREE worldwide long distance calling. The only catch is that you have to allow others to make local calls out on your phone line through Asterisk. As the site's motto says: " The Love You Take Is Equal To The Love You Make", so the more calls you allow out, the more calls you have available to make. It's about a 5:1 ratio, so even allowing a few calls out gives you alot of free calls.
  • Yeah, straight from the old page "Anything you can do I can do better!" Ya gotta hand to M$, they stick to their playbook.
  • What about Gizmo (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Arnar ( 207686 ) on Wednesday August 31, 2005 @08:41AM (#13445102)
    Skype is currently the only provider to allow calls to landlines and cellphones

    What about the Gizmo project [gizmoproject.com], which I believe I first saw mentioned right here on /.

    Arnar
    • I have tried this and it works very good! I had problems with crashes and connection problems using Skype but Gizmo seems to manage fine. Gizmo has a, in my opinion, better user interface.

      Been using Gizmo while playing World of Warcraft since it supports unlimited (?) connections in group mode.
  • Gizmo (Score:2, Informative)

    by yrn1 ( 60823 )
    Skyp eis not the only one that allows landlines. Gizmo does too.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday August 31, 2005 @08:43AM (#13445115)
    I hope Skype doesn't make the same mistake as every other company that tried to beat Microsoft at their own game. The best strategy for skype in a battle like this is play by their own rules. Specifically, they should completely open their protocol. If they try to pit one proprietary solution against a Microsoft proprietary solution, they will lose.
  • My question is (Score:3, Interesting)

    by $RANDOMLUSER ( 804576 ) on Wednesday August 31, 2005 @08:46AM (#13445135)
    I'm curious how tightly/predominantly this is going to be bundled into Longhorn. I suspect that Microsoft VoIP on the desktop is one of the features that will ship on time.
  • I seem to remember getting my first edition of windows 98 packaged, installing it, and seeing that the had a built in feature to place calls through your modem line, which somehow they had left enabled by default to be able to make long distance calls.....this was rectified in the second edition of windows 98....

    I used to be able to call my friends in new york from canada for free....what ever happened to those good old days? I have been using skype religiously although without the skype in / out featur
    • by tpgp ( 48001 ) on Wednesday August 31, 2005 @09:21AM (#13445394) Homepage
      windows 98 *snip* had a built in feature to place calls through your modem line, *snip* to be able to make long distance calls.....this was rectified in the second edition of windows 98.... *snip* call my friends in new york from canada for free

      Windows 98 did not contain some magic software to allow you to call your friends for free.

      I'm not sure what you're describing - but I suspect you dialed New York at standard intl rates & the company you worked for footed the bill.
  • MS already had a chance with netmeeting, but they blew it when they decided to hide netmeeting (activated by running "conf" at the run prompt) in attempts to push their non-standard protocol in msn messenger.
  • Google has a great strategy for bleeding out Microsoft.

    1. start a rumor about some new project to take over an emerging market.
    2. Embellish the rumor with a VERY aggressive timeline.
    3. back off to give MS the chance to react with a full-scale barrage.
    4. watch MS miss the target.
    5. forget about the project (help Microsoft save face and preserve bravado)
    6. goto 1.
  • Microsoft has a way of creating marketshare. I never understood why people left ICQ for MSN Messenger (I have to switch to writing an email cause my friend isn't online?!), but i expect the same might happen with this kind of application.
    • I never understood why people left ICQ for MSN Messenger

      Off the top of my head:

      • Centralised storage of contacts (ever had to reinstall ICQ? You used to lose all your contacts).
      • Messages from unknown people are blocked by default.
      • Conversation histories (as opposed to a dialog for each message).
      • Ability to talk to more than 1 person at a time in the same UI (ICQ chat was separate, and just a bit too weird and geeky, I think).

      Sure, ICQ may have fixed the above, in some cases quite quickly, but MSN jus

  • Microphone? (Score:5, Funny)

    by PhilHibbs ( 4537 ) <snarks@gmail.com> on Wednesday August 31, 2005 @08:57AM (#13445220) Homepage Journal
    I can't believe no-one's suggested this yet. Maybe because it's a really weak joke.
    • Maybe WinDial, or given Microsoft's penchant for generic names, "Microsoft Dial" seems more likely. Then 5 years later they sue any competing product with the word "Dial" in it.
  • I read this story this morning (London time) in the FT [ft.com] on my way into work.

    When I read a classic Slashdot story like this in a print publication 8 hours before it appears on Slashdot, then it says to me that Slashdot's going seriously downhill...
  • by higuita ( 129722 ) on Wednesday August 31, 2005 @09:01AM (#13445253) Homepage
    skype isnt the only one, at least one more major program can do it also:

    voipbuster [voipbuster.com] also allow net2phone connections (and even free for some european countries!!)

    there is also a manual to work with linux [dw-perspective.org.uk]

    but there are more, at least around here (portugal/europe) http://voip.necty.com/ [necty.com] its also testing a voip to phone and it use kaix as its oficial client (so both windows and linux works fine)

  • Monopolies were controlled for this very reason. The law, as it used to be enforced before the Federalist Society takedown of the judiciary, was intended to prevent a monopoly in one area to enable a company to create new monopolies in other industries, at infinitum until one company can conceivably own and run, well, everything.

    Federalist Society members see nothing wrong with that. In fact, they want stock and seats on the board of directors.

    Microsoft can use its monopoly in the OS to spend unlimited amou
  • check your facts! (Score:4, Informative)

    by mwilliamson ( 672411 ) on Wednesday August 31, 2005 @09:18AM (#13445370) Homepage Journal
    This is wrong.

    "Skype is currently the only provider to allow calls to landlines and cellphones."

    I currently call landlines on stanaphone [stanaphone.com] (via both softphone and hardware-based SIP), iconnecthere [iconnecthere.com] (both softphone and hardware-based), and packet 8 [packet8.net] (hardware based). Skype is certainly not the only one allowing calls to the PSTN, and they're certainly not the most flexible.

  • I don't care what they do as long as they make a Mac/Linux version, OR make sure it's compatible with Skype. I do not want to use my game machine for anything other than playing games.
  • I don't want to have my PC running to make calls. And no Windows PC for certain.
    I want a VOIP appliance I can plug into my NAT/firewall and link up to my existing phone cabling.
    That's one reason not to have Skype. But two reasons not to have a Windows solution.
  • B*llshit ;-) (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward
    What will realy kill somebody is Google talk once they will introduce the transport system so that people can chat with anybody using any other IM, thanks to jabber :)

    C'M'on MS instead of trying to "kill" people opponents, try to innovate and not buy startups :)
  • There can be no doubt that Microsoft wants a slice of everyones pie. No independent software vendor is immune to Microsoft taking over their market almost overnight by using it's monopoly power on the desktop.

    Any antitrust regulations will only give them a slap on the wrist after they have made insane amounts of money from their behaviour. There is simply no way they will stop, it is too lucrative.

    Any independent software vendor should ask themselves if they can really gamble their whole future on making so
  • by Tom ( 822 )
    Company announces product that will destroy the competition. "Out real soon!" /. falls for another vaporware announcement and posts it all over the 'net, causing the marketing drone that wrote it ("hey, you! write something that'll cause our competition some pain, but it doesn't have to cost much!") a spontaneous orgasm.

    And breaking news: Water rumoured to be wet!
  • From teleo.com I found This m1ccy$0ft connect site [microsoft.com].

    No beta on there though, but the teleo site says there should be.

    Painful registration as well, very slow... stupid .net post backs when I reselect a combo box... bloody view state.

    Anyway
  • by re-Verse ( 121709 ) on Wednesday August 31, 2005 @09:36AM (#13445512) Homepage Journal
    This brings me back to when Microsoft decided that search engines were cool and launched their search engine/Google killer.

    I wonder what ever happened to that Google company after that.
    • "This brings me back to when Microsoft decided that search engines were cool and launched their search engine/Google killer.
      I wonder what ever happened to that Google company after that."

      Or that AOL Instant Messenger killer.

      Or that Sony Playstation2 killer.

      Or that TiVo killer.

      Or that QuickTime killer.

      Or that iTunes killer.

      Next?

  • ...that they are going to inform about a briefing for whoever is interested in news about an upcoming event where coverage of a future announcement will be told to intkfskghddf (head explodes)

    Oh my frickin' good, that's one BORING company...

    Wake me up when Microsoft announces that Paul Allen will publicly fsck Bill Gates up the ass, so I can run in the other direction.
  • It's going to be called MS Hype. Microsoft's idea of a killer app is more like a steamroller. It's big. It's slow. It's unwieldy. It's relentless. And it's gonna crush you when you discover your feet stuck in wet cement.
  • If Longhorn/Vista is "enchanced" with this VoIP software, this will mean every future desktop will have this. If it works anything like the way MSN "hides" accounts be prepared for random "audio spam" from bots. If you thought getting a racey email at work from a pr0n site because they somehow got ahold of your work email address is bad or embarassing just wait till you have a "perky girl" asking you to "help them with their problem".

    If MS goes through with this, I hope they handle it a lot better than MS
  • by cardpuncher ( 713057 ) on Wednesday August 31, 2005 @09:50AM (#13445622)

    This is really about Microsoft staking its claim in an emerging market. It doesn't mean they're going to strike oil. WebTV hasn't really led to a rush to adopt a Microsoft-dominated media/PC convergence model. And neither has Windows MCE. Microsoft's ventures outside its traditional Windows and Office franchises have not been particularly successful.

    Nobody would think of phoning people through their PC if there wasn't temporarily a tariff anomaly - that's simply not going to persist in the long term.

    The kind of thing that will persist is a rather different kind of innovative integration that delivers services that can be used on familiar devices (phones, televisions, etc) as well as PCs - an example of which might be HomeChoice [homechoice.co.uk].

  • by t482 ( 193197 ) on Wednesday August 31, 2005 @09:54AM (#13445658) Homepage
    Doesn't work in Linux But for $1.27 you can use Voipbuster [voipbuster.com]to call a dozen countries unlimited minutes for free.

    Quality is fairly good. A friend of mine has dumped his local phone service and is using this for all his calls.
  • A usb headset/handset and a xbox application+ high speed internet and ta-da, instant internet phone..

    I probably shouldn't give them any of my good ideas... Quick to the patent office!
  • I think this is a good thing; the more competition, the better. Even though Microsoft's "Google killer" is a damp squib, I'm sure the the product's existence keeps people at Google on their toes and innovating just in case Microsoft throws enough money at web searching to accidently create something new.

    I used Skype and love the service, but I feel they're a little lazy. For instance, Skype-In. You can get Skype-In numbers in such populous, economic power house countries as Estonia or Finland. But for

  • So how is bundling VOIP into windows competitive?

  • If Microsoft provided a IP service that could ring *all* phone numbers would certainly kill Skype.
    There are a huge range of numbers that aren't accessable from Skype. This of coarse depends on which the country. In Spain for example, Skype cannot ring the special service numbers used by banks and other companies. These turn out to be very important for normal users, so in fact this what prevents people from replacing their phone compleatly and using Skype.

    These are the so-called "special numbers" ...
    This wo
  • Someone hits the radars... they do their usual lets make a press release before we have any code strategy, so that some possible customers hold off..

    In this case it is totally irrelevant, since the Microsoft offer either probably will break the SIP standard, or will be a closed island like skype, and to the worse will run Windows only as well, while all other alternatives are available on all platforms...

    Microsoft should be more worried that their company could go down with the rest of the economy if
  • Skype details (Score:2, Informative)

    by GrugVoth ( 822168 )
    Before anyone goes on about how MS will end up running everything with a proprietary protocol that noone else can interoperate with you should ask about Skype itself. You do realise that Skype is simply a propietary hacked version of SIP? We looked at what it does here (since we are in a similar line of business) and it is scary how convoluted they have tried to make it so that nobody else can provide service/equipment that interoperates with them. They are becoming a closed exclusive network that no other
  • include "MicroSkype" with every PC sold by DELL, HP, Gateway and most of the other PC OEMs who don't dare market an alternative OS on the front page of their websites, or add a "xxx recommends Linux" banner. If they do they'll lose their Microsoft ad "rebates" which make survival in a commodity market place so essential because of razor thin profit margins.

    Like Netscape, et. al., Skype won't have a spot on the DELL desktop, so they are at an instant market disadvantage because folks have to seek Skype out,
  • by Anonymous Coward
    Pick-up phone: Windows Xp will set you free...

    please dial number you want to reach after the tone...

    I never though I would overcome my intimate problem but Zentaz made me happy...

    sound of you dialing...

    your cal will be forwarded in a moment please stay on the phone to maintain your calling priority...

    Enlarge you Manhood!...

    dring... dring... dring...

    The person at the end of the line as pick-up the phone, what do you want to do now? press 1 to ask this person name, press 2 to identify yourself and state the r
  • by lxs ( 131946 ) on Wednesday August 31, 2005 @10:18AM (#13445877)
    Over the last year MS introduced/announced:

    A 'google search killer'
    An 'ipod killer'
    A 'bittorrent killer'

    A load of X killers that I can't be bothered to remember

    now a Skype killer

    How about, well I don't know, eh, ACTUALLY MAKING A DECENT OS THAT'S FINISHED ON TIME?

    I guess that's asking too much.

    Come on MS finish what you start before you do something else.
    we NEED a slower operating system on our computers. It's the only thing that will lead to faster processors.

    /me puts on tinfoil hat

    Or do you think it's a mere coincidence that since the introduction of WinXP and the long wait for it's successor, processor speed suddenly stopped doubling every 18 months?

  • by Not_Wiggins ( 686627 ) on Wednesday August 31, 2005 @10:22AM (#13445927) Journal
    It'll just be the next version of Windows. Ensure Skype doesn't run properly, and that'll kill them off long before it can come out in the courts that Microsoft was engaging in anti-competitive practices.

    Ahhh... history... why do you repeat yourself?

Computer Science is merely the post-Turing decline in formal systems theory.

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