Skype and Nokia today announced a partnership that will bring the world's leading internet communications experience to the Nokia range of mobile computers.
Under the terms of the cooperation, Skype will be integrated into Nokia devices, starting with Nokia Nseries. The Nokia N97 flagship device will be the first to incorporate the Skype experience in the third quarter of 2009.
The Skype experience will be part of the address book of the Nokia N97, enabling presence - seeing when Skype contacts are online - as well as instant messaging.
Nokia N97 owners around the world will also be able to use 3G and WLAN to easily make and receive free Skype-to-Skype voice calls, in addition to low-cost Skype calls to landlines and mobile devices.
The N97 devices will have Skype pre-installed, while holder of early versions will be able to get it through a software upgrade. Other select N-series devices are also likely to come with integrated Skype functionality which includes Skype contacts, Chat, VoIP and Presence.
Skype was acquired by eBay for $4.3 billion in 2005 but by taking a $1.4 billion writedown in 2007, eBay was reportedly mulling selling Skype although the online marketer denied this rumour.
"Making Skype available everywhere through mobile devices is essential to fulfilling our vision of 'enabling the world's conversations'," said Scott Durchslag, Skype's chief operating officer.
"Collaborating closely with Nokia to preload and integrate our software onto their devices will benefit the many Nokia customers who already use Skype, as it makes Skype easily accessible and simple to use on the go. It will also bring Skype new users who love Nokia's Symbian S60 experience," he added.
"With more than 400 million Skype users worldwide, the integration of Skype on Nokia Nseries mobile computers is a significant step in bringing converged Internet experiences from the desktop to the world's most advanced mobile computer," said Jose-Luis Martinez, vice president, Nokia Nseries.