I did not ever like the company, but today’s news just made me laugh. Obviously the strategy is clear, take that niche and put there something later. Also “release earlier, release often” fits here.
But I still think it is a step that may destroy the image of “not a telephony company” or what ever the slogan was. The thing is, that Skype for Mobile is just not a VoIP application. That’s it. Truphone is, Gizmo is, Fring is, but not the skype.
Then what does this Java application do? Well, it logs into your account, updates your presence and shows your contacts. This is why you have to download it. How do you speak with contact? You dial a local access number using your cell provider. Not enough? Then take this: How do your contacts call you? right, they click you in skype. But how do you answer? you answer a traditional cell call over your mobile operator network. Hm, do you wonder who pays for the call? You do. Just like with the forwarding you skype to mobile.
Whatever way the story develops further (not that I care, skype is a dying company IMO, unless it is bought by a telco) this little application is the most useless thing I’ve ever seen.