Skype Enters Android’s Walled Garden Via KDDI?
After exitingÂ Verizon’s walled garden earlier on Android (to the celebration of millions everywhere), the VoIP king has announced that a strategic partnership with KDDI, which may not please many Japanese Android fans.
Following the announcement of ourÂ partnership with Verizon Wireless earlier this year, weâ€™ve just announced a strategic alliance with KDDI to integrate Skype software across KDDIâ€™s services, starting with its mobile network â€“au.
au customers will be able to benefit from Skype-to-Skype voice calls which donâ€™t count against their monthly minute allowance*, IM, as well as great value calls to international numbers at Skypeâ€™s low rates.
The Skype app for au phones will be â€˜always onâ€™ so customers can see their friendsâ€™ online status at any time, as well as be able to receive Skype calls and Instant Messages whenever theyâ€™re connected. (Official Skype Blog)
Until recently Skype was not available to Japanese and Chinese Android users, an omission that was puzzling until this announcement was made.
While this agreement probably puts some extra cash in Skype’s pocket in the short term, it’s hard to see deals like this will benefit Skype over the long term (despite the fact that KDDI is releasing new Android phones this December).
Fortunately for Skype, Google Voice has yet to focus upon the land of the rising sun. Although if the search engine giant ever decides to expand east, Skype may find its deal with KDDI to be a burden rather than a benefit.