IM is a huge part of my life.. next to SMS texting.. its the whole presence, freeflow almost instant conversation with friends that makes it a very appealing application for cell phones.. unfortunately not all cell phones have them or the applications arent broadly compatible... skype and symbian OS is one.. skype is a cool IM/VoIP application.. a mobile client has been on the "works" forever but nothing yet and since it doesnt look like skype will release a Symbian client to the public (the client for 3's X series phones does not work) anytime soon.. theres been a few beta apps out there that have skype capabilites but they arent as nice as having a native client built for the phone... apps like EQO and SoonR for example have skype in/out capabilities but you also have to download and have the PC application running on your computer for that call to be made which kinda sucks... and defeats the whole Mobile VoIP idea
I wrote about iSkoot and fring before (and again about fring recently here) but at the time they did not have a solution for my phone.. but things have changed.. this post is all about using skype on the E61 or any other supported phone for that matter for free skype calls..I'll explain a bit about each, what I liked and didnt like as well...at the end they both do a very nice job.. as you can see I have a few different IM options but I like these two the most
Fring uses your cell phone data plan to make VoIP calls and instant messages with Skype and GoogleTalk..why I like Fring? it uses your data plan to make that call sobasically it makes a decent VoIP call over EDGE (2.5GPRS) or WiFi if your phone is capable..theres no usage of minutes!.. what I didnt like? no option at login to choose your connection, it jumps whatever Access point you used last.. so in my case EDGE connection but I can switch the connection to WiFi once logged in ..since the call is made w\in the application it doesnt let you use speakerphone or bluetooth ..unlike iskoot it doesnt load your skypeout contacts
iSkoot is probably my favorite right now..probably because its as close to a native skype client as possible...it looks like a skype client..the logos and UI..it asks for my access point at login and automatically refreshes my buddy list...and also brings up my skypeout contacts
what I didnt like? no chat capability as of today on my phone so I can only call them but no IM..no GoogleTalk support (which is ok by me but coming soon)... it makes the VoIP call by calling iskoot's PSTN server and then connecting to Skype (this is where you still use your minutes- if anything this comes in great when calling Intl skype contacts since there is no long distance charges)
So two different but yet similar IM/VoIP mobile clients.. check their websites to see if your phone is compatible and start calling!