Skype Enables Android Video Calling? Well, Not So Fast

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    Skype never ceases to amaze. While other companies continue to innovate and move forward in the VoIP space as well as the video chat industry, Skype, with all its 600 million users and tons of money, cannot seem to get it right.

    Well, the good news is, Skype has finally enabled video calling on Android. Except, not all Android users can benefit from it. In fact, less than 10% of Android users can now make video calls from their phones.

    You see, we have all heard about the fragmentation problem on Android. Different devices, different specs, different overlays, but most importantly, different versions of the OS. When the fragmentation issue is hypothetical, it is no big deal and besides a good topic for a blog post, it doesn’t affect most users. In this case though, it is very practical and Skype’s new video calling capabilities are only available to users of Android 2.3, which again, is less than 10%.

    The video call feature is available for just the four 2.3 devices: HTC Desire S, Sony Ericsson Xperia neo and pro, and the Google Nexus S.

    For the lucky few who actually get the new Skype for Android, they can call their friends on Skype for iPhone, PC, Mac or Smart TVs, which is great. It also supports video calling over 3G and not just Wifi. Again, great.

    The thing is, this is too little, too late. Fring already released an app for iPhone and Android that allows video calling between platforms, and the company even released a native iPad app, which supports group video calling.

    Tango is also growing faster than Skype did in its first year with over 17 million users, and it too supports video calling between platforms.

    So what is Skype doing besides working on a new Facebook video integration that is keeping them so busy and preventing them from innovating in a space that they pretty much dominate?

    Your thoughts are welcome, really.