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Skype Adds Video

Techstination feature for Thursday, December 1, 2005

Skype adds features to fend off competitors. Bloomberg Boot Camp, a report on today's technology. Skype has caught on around the world as a free PC to PC tool enabling voice communication. So many people started using the service....more than 66 million have signed up...that Ebay decided to buy Skype. Now it has partnerships with Radio Shack, Motorola, Linksys and others. With Sony having announced a new PC to PC free video conferencing service, Skype isn't standing still. It is adding video too. Saul Klein is Skype's VP of global marketing...

"To use Skype for video you'll be able to use any Web cam with your PC. And for the holidays, we think this is going to be an amazing thing for families that are separated and who want to stay in touch with one another."

And about the new competition....from Sony, Nero and others...

"While there are other very big companies who are coming into the market now, we feel by focusing on the customer, by continuing to innovate, we can stay ahead of the game."

Skype makes money by selling the ability to make and receive calls from traditional phones. Klein says the company has no intention of getting into the more traditional voice over IP phone business....with handsets around the house. But with add-ons such as a Blue tooth headset from Motorola....and a cordless handset from Linksys...a new generation of consumers may be content to communicate using Skype...and a cell phone. Bloomberg Boot Camp, I'm Fred Fishkin.