Tom Keating : VoIP & Gadgets Blog
Tom Keating
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Skype P2P VoIP

Google interoperates with Skype

August 29, 2006

The Google Talkabout blog announced Google's plans to interoperate with Skype. In part it states, "Google and eBay have signed an agreement around text-based advertising and "click-to-call" advertising, in which Google Talk and Skype will power voice calls between customers and merchants." Even more interesting is this tidbit from the official press release: "Google will become the exclusive text-based advertising provider for eBay outside the United States." Wow, this is a huge win for Skype/eBay, but I'm not so sure how much of a win this is for Google - more on that later.

It is interesting that there is a caveat in the press release - Google is the exclusive text-based advertising provider for eBay outside the United States. Apparently, as part of this deal, Skype/eBay can continue to use Overture or other ad networks within the U.S. but must use Google for advertising outside the U.S.

Turn your PC into a Skype gateway

August 22, 2006

Televoce's PontiVoce (PonTEE VO-che) Server is an interesting piece of software that lets you create a 100% software-based Skype gateway that leverages the Skype API to turn your PC into a Skype gateway for relaying calls. It's worth pointing out that Skype has offered free phone calls within the U.S. and Canada to help acquire more Skype users. Using TeleVoce solution, you can extend this "free offer" to friends and family outside this free calling zone.

VoIP Call Recording

August 22, 2006

VoIP call recording software for popular VoIP applications such as Skype, Google Talk, Windows Messenger, Yahoo! Messenger, and the rest is something I get asked about all the time. I can't tell you how many times I get email requests for recommendations for the best VoiP call recording software as well as requests for call recording software and/or hardware to record strictly PSTN or traditional PBXs conversations. Even the VoIP Forums has a few threads involving requests for call recording, including this three-page thread titled "Call Recording Software" and this VoIP Forum posting, "SOHO VoIP call recording".

It's tough when I get so many of these help requests (usually via email, sometimes via phone) since it is in my nature to want to help people out.

Skype PPC 2.1 beta for PocketPC

August 15, 2006

Skype released PPC 2.1 beta for PocketPCs. You can download it here. Technically PocketPC or PPC is a misnomer, since this new Skype software can run on smartphones running Windows CE or the latest Windows Mobile 5 operating systems. Perhaps a name change for Skype PPC is needed? Skype Smartphone?

Sony mylo personal communicator

August 8, 2006

Sony's Mylo ("my life online") personal communicator is a new gadget that provides users access to online instant messaging services, Web pages (fully-featured Opera browser), e-mails, play music, and view photos. Most interestingly, the mylo communicator comes with Skype software built into it for VoIP calling. It also has Google Talk and Yahoo! Messenger embedded, but it's not clear if these two applications will only support IM or VoIP as well, however Google Talk and Yahoo Messenger only support IM and not VoIP. You'll have to use Skype exclusively for VoIP.

Earn VoIP PSTN dialing credits by watching videos

July 28, 2006

Back in March, I had an exclusive first look at Lycos Phone, which is a rebranded softphone client made by Globe7. On Tuesday next week, Globe7 will launch a major new release of their softphone client, though they've quietly made the 3.0 software available for download now. The new version loads much faster, has a complete video library for users and allows users to earn free credits for the phone simply by watching videos. Yep, you read that correctly - you can earn PSTN dialout minutes simply by watching videos.

LiveJournal meets VoIP via Gizmo Project

July 27, 2006

Andy had the goods yesterday on Sixapart's Live Journal and Gizmo Project in a deal that would enable one of the largest blogging community to be able to IM & VoIP each other. Well, today, it's official.

The co-branded “Gizmo Project for LJ Talk” software will enable LiveJournal friends to call each other for free, send instant messages and see each other's online presence (available, away or offline). Some nice features include free “Call me” and “IM” buttons on journal pages to initiate calls and instant messages from the web, as well as point and click “voice posts", which allows Gizmo Project for LJ Talk users to post audio recordings (podcasts) on their blog. The partnership also stated that Gizmo Project for LJ Talk users will be able to make low-cost PSTN calls in addition to buddy-to-buddy PC calling.

Mac users finally get Skype video feature

July 25, 2006

Blogger plagiarism and sweet revenge

July 14, 2006

Today, the big story was about how Skype's protocol was cracked by a Chinese company. The blogosphere was all abuzz over the news. Most, but apparently not all the bloggers who jumped on this hot news, cited the original source of the story, namely VoIPWiki.

Apparently, Jan in Malaysia plagiarized VoIPWiki's post. Here's the link to the alleged plagarism.

Skype cracked

July 14, 2006

VoIPWiki reports that Skype has been cracked. A Chinese company has successfully reverse engineered the Skype protocol. According to the blog post, the company's CEO stated their software will not support Skype’s supernode technology. What this essentially means is that this 3rd party Skype clone will be a "free-loader" on the Skype network - they won't have to be a supernode responsible for helping to carry Skype traffic around the Net.

Further, as VoIPWiki points out, if Skype decides to add advertisements to their client, these can be bypassed with this 3rd party Skype client.

Skype has responded with this statement, “Skype is aware of the claim made by a small group of Chinese engineers that they have reverse engineered Skype software.

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