Apple’s online App Store was to begin offering a free software application enabling iPhone owners to use Skype’s Internet telephone service yesterday, a Skype spokesman said.
The Skype application would also enable people to use the service to make telephone calls from newer-generation iPod Touch MP3 players, the spokesman said.
“Skype software has been the No. 1 request among our users,” Skype chief operating officer Scott Durchslag said in statement that was to be distributed yesterday.
“We are delighted to deliver on this request and put Skype into the pockets of millions of people around the world who are carrying iPhone and iPod Touch devices,” he said.
Skype bypasses the standard telephone network by channeling calls over the Internet.
Skype service features include being able to call other users free of charge and the ability to connect with landlines or mobile devices at low rates.
The Skype application would synch with iPhone contact lists but route calls online, bypassing telecom carriers.
Telecom service providers are still expected to benefit because they make money from selling Internet data plans to iPhone users.
IPod Touches are essentially iPhones without the mobile telephone components but have wireless Internet connectivity that can be used for Skype calls.
Skype rival Truphone released a version of its Internet telephony service for iPhones and iPod Touch devices last year.