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Skype on iPhone review

Niall Magennis

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Summary

Our Score:

6

Skype was one of the most requested and eagerly awaited applications for the iPhone and after a considerable wait it finally arrived as a free download on the App Store on 31st March. So how does the software measure up against its desktop cousin and other iPhone ready VoIP rivals?

Skype is certainly not the first Voice over IP applications for the iPhone, Truphone beat it to the punch by around a year, but Truphone doesn't have the brand recognition or the colossal user base of Skype. After all, Skype now reckons it has around 17 million registered users - although not all of these are using the service on a regular basis.

First things first, how does the iPhone app look? Rather than copy the design of the latest desktop version of Skype, the company has sensibly decided to make the iPhone version look much more like a standard iPhone app. As such there are times when you have to do a double take to check whether you're actually using the iPhone's standard dialler or Skype's lookalike version.

This is because the Skype dialler and in-call menu not only look almost identical to the standard iPhone version, but feature much of the same functionality, too. When you're on a call you can choose to mute the line, put the caller on hold or switch to speakerphone mode just as you would on a normal mobile call on the iPhone. The iPhone's proximity sensor is also called into play as the screen goes dark when you put the phone to your ear, just as it does on normal calls.

The contacts screen also apes the standard iPhone contact's book. You can jump to individual letters or hit the magnifying glass icon to perform a search. A neat addition is the 'Online' button, which filters the results to show you only those contacts that are currently logged in.

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AndyR

April 21, 2009, 3:57 am

Used this the other day to call Oz for 15 minutes using my iPhone. Worked flawlessly so seriously impressed with that!

Phani Areti

April 24, 2009, 4:10 pm

i am using it almost every day on my iphone since it has been released. i must say i was a bit disoppointed that o2 is not supporting skype call but if you have wifi access all the time ..y do u need o2? i hope the 3.0 update will fix it.

Frank 4

May 16, 2009, 2:50 pm

For historical record:Skype calls are available on i-Phone since long time!in fact - long


time before Apple had put its i-phone on the market.


Apple has stolen/taken/bought the name i-phone from Taiwan company "Linksys" producing


internet telephony,among other things,with the name "i-Phone";they are designed specically


for Skype and they are called .... "i-phone" and skype-phone in the same time.


Anybody complaining about i-pod and i-phone knock-offs?Why?God is happy when one croock steals from another croock!


What about the name "Apple"? - Steve Jobs stolen it from famous rock band TheBeattles!


They have recording company called "Apple Corp.",as every old child knows.


Mr Steve Jobs was allowed by generous rockers to use the name Apple under condition,that


he will stick to computer bussines,without venturing into MUSIC!


And now what?only 2 rockers left - I do not know if they care...


So,Misters Trusted Reviews! - SteveJ and his AppleCo are villians and they do not deserve


your protectionism,they deserve to be copied.ThankYou China for yours music devices!


There are many in US,who think,that mp3player is SteveJob's invention!!!!What do you think in this department?Do you know,who invented "MP3compression" and when?I will buy you Singapore Sling if you know!!Serious...I am waiting in the LongBar.

Jasonpmsmith

May 14, 2010, 12:49 pm

in response to Frank, the German company Fraunhofer-Gesellshaft developed MP3 technology and now licenses the patent rights to the audio compression technology - United States Patent 5,579,430 for a "digital encoding process". The inventors named on the MP3 patent are Bernhard Grill, Karl-Heinz Brandenburg, Thomas Sporer, Bernd Kurten, and Ernst Eberlein.


In 1987, the prestigious Fraunhofer Institut Integrierte Schaltungen research center (part of Fraunhofer Gesellschaft) began researching high quality, low bit-rate audio coding, a project named EUREKA project EU147, Digital Audio Broadcasting (DAB).


Dieter Seitzer and Karlheinz Brandenburg


Two names are mentioned most frequently in connection with the development of MP3. The Fraunhofer Institut was helped with their audio coding by Dieter Seitzer, a professor at the University of Erlangen. Sponsored Links


Dieter Seitzer had been working on the quality transfer of music over a standard phone line. The Fraunhofer research was led by Karlheinz Brandenburg often called the "father of MP3". Karlheinz Brandenburg was a specialist in mathematics and electronics and had been researching methods of compressing music since 1977. In an interview with Intel, Karlheinz Brandenburg described how MP3 took several years to fully develop and almost failed. Brandenburg stated "In 1991, the project almost died. During modification tests, the encoding simply did not want to work properly. Two days before submission of the first version of the MP3 codec, we found the compiler error."


What is MP3


MP3 stands for MPEG Audio Layer III and it is a standard for audio compression that makes any music file smaller with little or no loss of sound quality. MP3 is part of MPEG, an acronym for Motion Pictures Expert Group, a family of standards for displaying video and audio using lossy compression. Standards set by the Industry Standards Organization or ISO, beginning in 1992 with the MPEG-1 standard. MPEG-1 is a video compression standard with low bandwidth. The high bandwidth audio and video compression standard of MPEG-2 followed and was good enough to use with DVD technology. MPEG Layer III or MP3 involves only audio compression.


Hope that this quells your rage. Ta

Jasonpmsmith

May 14, 2010, 12:51 pm

@Frank P.S. where can I collect my Singapore Sling?

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