Jan from Ghent, Belgium

I have about 40 “pure” Skype contacts. I mean people i met through the Skype forums, a few Skype staff, students who made some memoir on Skype and asked me some data or help, Skype bloggers, etc.

Until yesterday I never met one of them alive. But Jan from Malaysia was in Belgium, in my city (Ghent), and he contacted me. So we met in town and drunk some “genevers” in the “dreupelkot” and afterwards some more Belgian beers (together with his friend Ivan) … and we talked a lot about the present and future of Skype. Well, to be honest, he talked more, but he also knows more.

For those who don’t know this: Jan is Belgian, from Ghent, but is expat in Malaysia, and has IMHO the best Skype Blog since SkypeJournal lost some of its contributors and therefore lowered its quality. See here: Skype-Watch.


SkypeOut, why to use?

I finished my last post with the phrase:"But let’s be fair, there still are reasons why you should use it …"
And mister Anonymous posted a comment defending SkypeOut here.

So, what are the reasons ...
  • Calls abroad are usually much more cheaper then the price your PSTN company charges you for
  • You don’t have to pay a monthly fee like you need to do for your PSTN phone company (although Skype is moving towards this system with SkypePro now!)
  • If you use a headset, you have your hands free to call and type on your computer keyboard
  • You can record your call with Pamela (I think the best tool on the market) or SAM and some others!
  • You have other interesting features, like importing your Outlook contact’s telephone numbers in Skype, and the Firefox or Explorer plugins that let you call with one click to PSTN numbers
  • Part of the calling route is encrypted, so more difficult to tap!
  • You can call from anywhere in the world where you have an internet connection for a fair price
  • You can send an SMS-message in an easy way
So, yes i will continue to call abroad with SkypeOut, although other and perhaps better solutions are coming up very very fast ... look here at GizmoCall!


No SkypeOut anymore

Like Luis Benavides, I am pissed off, therefore i almost don’t use SkypeOut anymore!

Luis is still very angry and raised a VERY INTERESTING issue, click on the next phrase to go to his blog: Skype IS breaking the user agreement! I didn’t think about it, but he is 100% right! They should refund everybody!

Some reasons why you shouldn’t use SkypeOut:
  • Connection fee of 0.037 € per call
  • Local connection fees are often cheaper with your PSTN* phone company
  • Other VoIP solutions are cheaper: VoIPStunt for instance
  • With SkypeOut you have to pre-pay your calls (buying credit before consuming, therefore sponsoring Skype), with your local PSTN company you pay after consumption!
  • With SkypeOut you can loose your credit and become a Skype Benefactor
  • People can’t call you back (from PSTN to Skype!)
  • There is no caller identification: people can’t know who is calling, and sometimes refuse to take the call – i experienced this with my own Parents (grin)!
  • Call quality is usually not as good as a PSTN to PSTN call
  • Calls to mobile phones are often of a quite bad quality
  • And most of all: I think Skype betrayed us!
But let’s be fair, there still are reasons why you should use it …

* “Public switched telephone network” or your ordinary old telephone line!