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Android App Analysis: Skype mobile

Skype mobile

Skype mobile Credit: Handout

Price: FREE

Producer: Skype

The Lowdown: Skype has become its own monster in the world of online communication. The voice and video-enabled service allows for free calling to its own members as well as the ability to buy extra features such as a real phone number, voicemail, and credit to call other real phones. Skype, as a whole, transforms both the computer and mobile device into an extra way to communicate at an affordable price.

Pros: Skype mobile for Android comes off looking a lot like it's iPhone brethren -- simple, clean and crisp. The simple interface allows for quick access to buddies online and messaging, as should be expected. Phone calls sound pretty clear over 3G and a user could forget pretty easily that they're on Skype rather than their actual phone. 

Cons: Woe is this app! While the lack of video chat could be excused because front-facing cameras are not common among Android phones, the lack of another expected feature is painfully obvious. Skype mobile can only be used with a 3G signal, the opposite situation of what iPhone and iPod touch users faced until about a month ago. While the decision against Wi-Fi use is not explain, it cripples the app in the common building away from a large city where 3G signals might fade out. 

The Verdict: Skype mobile looks great and gets a nice spot on Verizon's "Droid Does" advertisements, but lacks the ability to use a simple Wi-Fi connection to do its business. Even if there is a 3G connection, the call will drop if the signal fades! For an app and company that boasts it can be used to call "anyone in world," the app falls short on these high expectations.


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