Skype users may soon be sending text messages

Skype users can now send and receive text messages from mobile phones.

Users of the Internet phone service offered by Skype International may soon be able to send text messages to mobile phones thanks to a service that went into beta testing on Friday.

London-based Connectotel has developed technology that allows SMS (Short Message Service) messages to be sent to users of GSM (Global System for Mobile Communications) handsets via Skype's P-to-P (peer-to-peer) network, according to Connectotel's business development and technical director, Spencer Gun.

Skype users could already receive SMS messages using the "SMS to Skype" service launched three weeks ago. Connectotel began a beta test of its "Skype to SMS" service with selected users on Friday, Gun said Friday. The beta test is currently limited to sending messages to the U.K. and it was unclear Friday when the service might be ready for commercial use.

To use the Skype to SMS service, Skype users must first add "smsgateway" to their list of contacts, and then initiate a chat session with that contact. Once they've initiated the session, they can add the U.K. phone number for the person they want to send the message to -- in its full international format -- followed by their message.

With the current SMS to Skype service, the mobile phone user pays to send the message. An international SMS is slightly more expensive than a national SMS, according to Gun.

The Skype to SMS service is free during the beta test period. But there is a cost to providing the service, and Connectotel hopes Skype will participate, according to Gun.

"For the beta test, we have purchased SMS messages in bulk to get a good price of less than 3 pence (US$0.6) per message, so we're currently paying for the service," he said. "What we would like to do is have the billing managed through the existing SkypeOut prepaid service. We're in talks with Skype about this possibility."

With SkypeOut, users must pay into an account, say Euro 10 (US$13), against which they charge their calls. The SkypeOut global rate is 1.7 euro cents per minute.

Skype could not be immediately reached for comment.

Skype uses P-to-P technology to connect users to other users to talk and chat with friends. Skype was developed by the founders of Kazaa P-to-P technology, widely used to share music files. Sharman Networks is the company behind the Kazaa file sharing software

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

John Blau

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Cool Tech

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Stocking Stuffer

SmartLens - Clip on Phone Camera Lens Set of 3

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Aysha Strobbe

Microsoft Office 365/HP Spectre x360

Microsoft Office continues to make a student’s life that little bit easier by offering reliable, easy to use, time-saving functionality, while continuing to develop new features that further enhance what is already a formidable collection of applications

Michael Hargreaves

Microsoft Office 365/Dell XPS 15 2-in-1

I’d recommend a Dell XPS 15 2-in-1 and the new Windows 10 to anyone who needs to get serious work done (before you kick back on your couch with your favourite Netflix show.)

Maryellen Rose George

Brother PT-P750W

It’s useful for office tasks as well as pragmatic labelling of equipment and storage – just don’t get too excited and label everything in sight!

Cathy Giles

Brother MFC-L8900CDW

The Brother MFC-L8900CDW is an absolute stand out. I struggle to fault it.

Luke Hill

MSI GT75 TITAN

I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?