I recall mentioning in my earlier post about Skype adding 350 jobs to its firm and how it had a lot of other markets to expand into other than Europe and Asia. Not all markets offer high 3G bandwidth penetration, a reason why many mobile users aren’t inclined to use Skype. People at the firm are aware of this and they have been working out partnerships to leverage all sorts of markets and make Skype a more global mobile communication service.
Skype announced a Mobile Partner Program for operators today in markets that have a low 3G broadband penetration. The idea is simply to have carriers differ between their offerings and compete better in a challenging market environments and cater to a wider range of users. This follows similar operator partnerships that Skype have had with Hutchinson, KDDI and Verizon.
The Mobile Partner Program ensures that Skype is capable of running on numerous mobile devices which include feature phones other than just smartphones. The MPP provides an optimized version of Skype to ensure efficient bandwidth usage and an equally effective utilization of battery and data usage. Associated operators will be able to provide their users with the Skype experience on numerous mobile operating systems, which would include over a 100 different smartphones. While that is one plus point of the program, what makes this more effective is that mobile users on numerous carriers will be able to take advantage of free Skype to Skype calls, send messages to fellow Skype users as well as benefit from the extremely low calling rates offered by Skype.
The target here are definitely the emerging markets, for in my opinion these are the places with a huge population and users waiting to have cheaper calling solutions. Think of a global service that’s one step ahead of your messengers and chat clients in terms of connectivity while considerably cheaper to make calls with. You are hitting the right nail in the coffin with such deals, especially by removing the need for users to own high end smartphones. Not everyone can own an iPhone or and Android device, can they?