Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Skype's unlimitted calling plan..almost free

Back in May skype announced a pretty sweet "free long distance skypeout" promotion that was to run through the end of this month which had me skyping as much as possible and why wouldnt it? I made free skypeout calls to any landline and mobile phones in the U.S and Canada for a few months. As the promotion comes to an end they had to come up with some plan to keep all those people that signed up earlier in the year and preferably turn them to paying customers. Their plan was just announced - the Unlimited Calling Plan for a yearly rate of $14.95 (if you sign up by Jan 31st, $29.95 after) and to get people signed up they throw in some coupons for skype gear as well and 100 mins of intl skypeout credits. That's roughly $1.25 per month for unlimitted calling. I know what you are thinking ..sweet deal right? well as cheap as it is to talk these days having to sit in front of your PC is just not convinient anymore (this is one of the reasons I dont use skype much) there are however a few solutions I would suggest...

  • get a netgear skype WiFi Phone - and skypeout whenever you are on a hotspot or on the WLAN at the office, or home.

  • get a new cell phone/dualmode smartphone- it's christmas time and I'm sure you can dd the new cingular 8525 on that list, download the windows mobile skype client and voila.

  • get a dualmode phone - if you aren't ready to get rid of your landline phone but want some free long distance look for handsets like the dualphone which I have, you still need to have it plugged to your PC and the skype client running on it as well

  • get a pc-less skype phone(no need for a pc) like the Philips VoIP841 that comes with a built in skype client, plug it into your router with an ethernet, you can also plug in your land line. One draw back is that it uses DECT technology not WiFi so it can't be used at hotspots.
so as you can see there are various options to using skype without having to be glued to in front of a pc with those wired heaphone sets....