I jumped on the Skype bandwagon by downloading it when everyone was (and, apparently, still is) and tried it for the first time yesterday when they offered their first free Skype day in which everyone could get £0.20 worth of credit, good for about ten minutes to any country in the world, for absolutely nothing. It certainly gained them a customer in me.
Not only is it a nice little IM client, Skype’s main claim to fame is as a VoIP program, allowing people to make free calls worldwide to other computers and calls to landlines worldwide for less than the local rate in most places. I wanted a way to call home from Japan at a reasonable price, as the alternatives aren’t that appealing:
- Airline phones at $7.80/minute
- Hotel phones at a ridiculous rate
- Payphones at about 10p/minute
- £200 on a quad-band phone and extortionate international roaming rates
With Skype I can save up my free credit which should give me about an hour of talk time, just call computers for nothing, or just pay £10 for around ten hours of time. It’ll certainly make calling back to the UK for work or play that much easier and cheaper.
I’m still playing with the program but my Skype name is, predictably, nekofever.