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article imageSkype for iPhone update brings support for 3G calling at a cost

By Brenton Currie     May 30, 2010 in Technology
Popular VoIP service, Skype, has tonight updated its iPhone application, bringing amongst other things support for calling others over 3G connections.
Since Skype for iPhone first launched on the 31st March last year, users were left frustrated when it emerged it was not possible to make or answer calls over a 3G connection - a Wi-Fi connection was required to do so. Skype soon commented on the issue, mentioning the fact that American telecommunications provider AT&T wasn't ready to support such a data-intensive application.
Just over a year on, and a lot has changed. Apple has lifted many of the restrictions it placed on what applications could do over a 3G connection, and AT&T is finally bringing its network up to scratch. Skype also promised it would not launch support for the 3G calling until it felt audio quality could be maintained - which it now seems the company has solved. So it's only fitting that today, Skype for iPhone 2.0 went live.
The new update, which went live on the iTunes App Store earlier today, brings with it support for calls over a 3G connection, which in itself will bring a big smile to the faces of many Skype users. Audio is said to be near-CD quality for the iPhone 3GS and second-generation iPod Touch, start-time has been decreased, and faster access to the dial pad from the iPhone home screen.
Unfortunately for those hoping to use the 3G calling feature, Skype is going to slug users with a small charge, with the company mentioning "Skype-to-Skype calls on 3G are free until at least end of August 2010, after which there will be a small monthly fee (operator charges for data will still apply)." At this stage it's not clear how much the charge will be.
Skype is available for free from the iTunes App Store.
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