Skype forms tie-up with Japan's KDDI

Oct 18, 2010
The Skype Internet phone program. Japan's number two telecom operator KDDI said it had formed a strategic tie-up with Skype to bring Internet-based communication services to its mobile smartphone users.

Japan's number two telecom operator KDDI said Monday it had formed a strategic tie-up with Skype to bring Internet-based communication services to its mobile smartphone users.

KDDI's mobile service, operating under the "au" brand, will launch the new applications from November for selected handsets and offer Skype-to-Skype calls.

Details of the planned service, including prices, are yet to be released.

Skype, which was founded in 2003, bypasses the standard telephone network by channeling voice, video and text conversations over the Internet.

KDDI hopes to gradually expand the service to fixed-line telephone and other services.

"Skype on au is a breakthrough in giving customers in Japan unlimited, global communications options, while expanding their calling community to hundreds of millions of Skype users worldwide," said KDDI senior vice president Takashi Tanaka.

"We look forward to working closely with Skype to extend these benefits beyond mobile to broadband, fixed line and cable, and thereby maximise the satisfaction of our customers in every area of our business," he said.

KDDI was preparing to release three kinds of new smartphones, powered by Google's Android software.

Media speculation had been rife that KDDI was looking toward Skype as a way to strengthen its smartphone services.

Japan's number-three mobile phone firm Softbank dominates the local smartphone market with the phenomenally popular iPhone series from Apple.

But it is facing strong competition from Japanese mobile phone giant NTT DoCoMo, which uses high-tech Experia handsets, leaving KDDI to lag behind the two rivals.

Meanwhile, Luxembourg-based Skype has been expanding its partnership with major international communications firms.

It signed a deal with US telecoms giant Verizon in February and formed a partnership with Avaya Inc. to bring the Internet communications service to US business customers.

Skype interim chief executive officer Adrian Dillon expressed his high hopes for the new partnership with KDDI.

"KDDI's position as a leading network provider in Japan that offers a wide range of communications services, makes it a natural partner for Skype given our vision to make Skype available everywhere and enable users to take their Skype conversations with them wherever they go," he said.

Explore further: Sony's quarterly loss balloons on mobile woes

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Skype comes to iPhones on Tuesday

Mar 30, 2009

Skype has confirmed that a free software application enabling iPhone owners to use its Internet telephone service will be available in Apple's online App Store beginning Tuesday.

Facebook joins forces with Skype

Oct 14, 2010

Skype and Facebook joined forces Thursday to let users of the popular Internet communications service chat with their friends on the booming social network.

Motorola and Skype announce certified Bluetooth headset

Nov 22, 2005

Motorola, Inc. and Skype today announced the first Skype-certified Bluetooth headset solution in America, the Motorola Wireless Internet Calling Kit. The Motorola Wireless Internet Calling Kit enables Skype ...

Skype founders looking to buy back company

Apr 11, 2009

The two founders of Skype are seeking to buy back the hugely popular Internet telephone service that they sold to online auction giant eBay in 2005, according to US media reports.

Recommended for you

Sony's quarterly loss balloons on mobile woes

15 hours ago

Sony's losses ballooned to 136 billion yen ($1.2 billion) last quarter as the Japanese electronics and entertainment company's troubled mobile phone division reported huge red ink.

Will Apple Pay be mobile pay's kick-start?

23 hours ago

If anyone can get us to use our smartphones as wallets, it's Apple. That's what experts think about the recent launch of Apple Pay, the first mobile wallet to work on an iPhone.

Google execs discuss regulation, innovation and bobble-heads

Oct 30, 2014

Eric Schmidt and Jonathan Rosenberg help run Google, one of the world's best-known, most successful - and most controversial - companies. They've just published a new book, "How Google Works," a guide to managing what they ...

LinkedIn reports 3Q loss but sales climb

Oct 30, 2014

LinkedIn Corp. posted a third-quarter loss on Thursday, but its results were better than expected as revenue grew sharply, sending shares of the online professional networking service higher in extended trading.

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.