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

Skype goes retail - sold at Radio Shack

November 18, 2005

CNet is reporting that Skype will be sold at retail stores, starting with Radio Shack.

The Luxembourg-based Net telephony company, founded by the people behind the Kazaa peer-to-peer service, is expected to announce on Monday that it has struck a partnership with consumer electronics chain RadioShack.

I just met with Nero last week and I asked what exactly their model was when selling Nero SIPPS Connect, a SIP-based softphone client in retail stores. He had a decent answer, but I can't for the life of me remember it know. I actually have a copy and have been meaning to test it out and blog it. So I guess this makes this the 2nd VoIP softphone to be sold on retail shelves.

ActionTec VoSKY Chatterbox for Skype

November 11, 2005

The ActionTec VoSKY Chatterbox was launched on Thursday and I intended to blog it, but I had 16 blog posts on Thursday, so I couldn't cover all the VoIP news in one day! The VoSKY Chatterbox is a hands-free USB-based speakerphone designed specifically with Skype in mind, though there is no reason why this USB-based audio device wouldn't work with other VoIP apps. I reviewed a similar product - the Phoenix Technologies Duet, which had good audio quality but was a bit on the pricey side. Though it did have some unique features like the ability to conference PSTN and VoIP calls (i.e.

Skype spam

November 10, 2005

Firm urges banning Skype in the enterprise

November 10, 2005

Well, this industry analysy firm's stance on Skype blocking will certainly irk a few Skype fans. Technology industry analyst firm Info-Tech Research Group is telling enterprises to ban Skype - the freely-available Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) phone service - from their organizations. "Companies that are already banning peer-to-peer applications, such as instant messaging, should add Skype to its list of unsanctioned software programs," says Info-Tech analyst Ross Armstrong.

"Approximately 17 million registered Skype users are using the service for business purposes," says Armstrong.

China blocking Skype here we go again

November 8, 2005

I just blogged this morning about how China was going to have 210.11 billion minutes with revenues of RMB 52.53 billion Yuan by 2007 but then commented, "So ummm China blocks Skype, one of the leading VoIP players and China is still going to reach an astounding 210.11 billion VoIP minutes?" I had no idea that today Verso announced some news regarding providing technology to China for blocking Skype. Well, not the whole country of China, but a Tier-One carrier based in China, so it's still huge news.

A fellow TMCnet journalist has the scoop on Verso providing technology to Tier-One carrier based in China to filter Skype traffic.

Update: Looks like Loose Wire had this story as well and he provides some insightful analysis on Skype blocking.

Nero SIPPS Connect VoIP softphone

October 31, 2005

I wrote about Nero's entry into the VoIP space a long time ago and was actually taken aback when I read Nero's press releases espousing their VoIP functionality. I was like "Huh? What? My favorite CD/DVD burning software company is in the VoIP space?" Today, Nero is introducing SIPPS Connect, a VoIP softphone application with voice, IM, and video built-in.

VOCAL's Skype Analog Telephone Adaptor

October 27, 2005

VOCAL Technologies, Ltd. (, a developer of software and hardware solutions for the communications industry, gave me an exclusive on their new line of analog telephone adapters (ATAs) that will support Skype Internet phone service, extending Skype service to any conventional or cordless phone. Although this is a Skype-compatible ATA, the ATA still relies on the host PC to run Skype. So this is not a "standalone" Skype ATA device (Skype client embedded into the ATA) which many Skype users have been clamoring for.

However, I did contact the PR person representing VOCAL Technologies and asked, "How does this ATA connect to the Skype software running on the PC? Is it over the LAN or via USB?" This is important since I'd prefer an ATA to sit on the network rather than be connected to the PC using USB.

Buying a Viper using click-to-call VoIP

October 26, 2005

Cool - looks like my favorite car (Dodge Viper) and my favorite technology (VoIP) are merging together. The next Viper I buy from DaimlerChrysler can be done via VoIP using click-to-call technology from eStara (see release below). Of course, I could also just check out eBay Motors for any used Vipers for sale, which no doubt will soon feature Skype buttons for VoIP "click-to-call" connectivity beteween eBay buyers and sellers. Or I can simply contact my Viper mechanic - the Viper Wizard, Chuck Tator who is the Viper "guru" for the entire Northeast and who also happens to sell Vipers at the last independent Dodge dealership in America.

Skype keynote address covers the whole gambit

October 25, 2005

Skype's Niklas Zennstrom gave his keynote address to a jam-packed audience. He talked about the history of Skype, the present Skype (including the eBay acquisition), as well as the future of Skype. He listed some interesting statistics during his presentation that I thought I'd share.

First, he listed 61 million registered Skype users, but did add a disclaimer that this number hasn't been updated and is a bit higher. He also added that Skype is getting 170,000 new registrations per day.

VoIP mega-merger mania?

October 21, 2005

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