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Founded in 2003, Skype has become a very popular service which is used by over 25 million of people. Today the company is interested not only in promotion of its service, but in selling devices that make the usage of Skype a bit more comfortable. The chief executive officer of the company recently said in an interview that a lot of Skype-enabled devices would emerge in the market in future.

“The development of WiFi phones with built-in Skype capabilities will be the focus of our efforts. We will develop embedded Skype-enabled software for WiFi phones. We also plan to introduce wired Skype-enabled phones and set-top boxes (STBs),” said Niklas Zennstrom, the CEO of Skype Technologies in an interview with DigiTimes web-site.

Currently the company sells handsets and headsets that are compatible with Skype and can make the usage of the software more convenient. However, this is the first time when a Skype official talks about WiFi phones, STBs and other Skype-compatible devices.

Earlier this year Motorola and Skype agreed to collaborate in development and  co-marketing of new optimized Motorola “Skype Ready” companion products, such as Bluetooth headsets, dongles, and speakerphones, as well as delivery of the Skype Internet Telephony experience on “select Motorola mobile devices”.

Given that apart from Skype some hardware makers create Skype-compatible devices, currently the company believes that there is a need to introduce an authentication process that will enable customers to choose products which usage is authorized by Skype Technologies.

The company is also looking forward to enable emergency calling via Skype, which is a requirement for telephony companies. However, the company has faced some challenges with it.

“As it is difficult to report the precise location of a wireless 911 caller at present, we plan to develop a new Internet positioning solution to comply with the E-911 requirement. Skype has no problems following the legal intercept rules as our SkypeIn and SkypeOut services are currently carried out through the conventional PSTN (public switched telephone network),” Mr. Zennstrom explained.

IDC expects that the number of U.S. subscribers to residential voice-over-IP (VoIP) services will grow from 3 million in 2005 to 27 million by the end of 2009, which means that the market Skype tries to address with its devices is tremendous.


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