Skype on a Mobile Phone

At Alfresco we are big users of Skype. Matt has even dropped Vonage to use Skype as part of his primary business phone (Skype plus some other VOIP service). I, on the other hand, have been using Vonage as my home phone for nearly 3 years and am very happy with it. One of the important things for someone who works at home (and is taking care of family while his wife is on bed rest) is staying in contact. I installed the Skype mobile client on my phone. It is great. I can stay in contact while I am taking kids to and from school/activities. It is a bit of a battery hog but well worth it. A week or so ago, I went to lunch with the younger of my kids (those not is school) and Adrienne. (Yes, she is on bed rest, but she can get a bit stir crazy and so I try to get her out of the house once a week for a meal not prepared by me.) While at lunch one of the sales guys IMs me over Skype, that he needs someone to take a call to answer some questions. I mention that I am not near a computer (it is lunch time) and that if the call needs that kind of attention it will be a few minutes before I can get home to call the potential customer. He assures me that it won’t need that kind of attention and then pauses, “Wait, if you are not near a computer…how was I just chatting with you over Skype?!” After a few quick pointers on where to look and I can feel the excitement over the phone.

This conversation reminds me that I ought to check and see if there is an update to the version of Skype I am using on my phone. When I check, I see that Skype has partnered with iSkoot for a new mobile client. This I need to try. It is a complete rewrite, cutting out some of the battery hogging features and enabling things like calls over your mobile line to Skype users. Now I don’t have to worry so much about the quality when I am on an edge network instead of G or 3G network. So I decide this is something worth trying and go to install it. Let’s just say that the install process left much to be desired. After a lot of tries, I finally got it installed. I haven’t tried it since, but I want to say it was a temporary network issue, not that Alfresco hasn’t had our own issues in this regard. Now that it is installed, I am quite happy with it. It is easy to use. Call clarity is good. And battery life….there is a huge change.

If you have a mobile phone, and you use Skype and can afford the data fees, it is well worth it.