Yahoo earlier this week bought soft phone provider Dialpad. The company develops a desktop application that lets users place telephone calls to a regular land line using VoIP technology.
If the offering sounds familiar, you're probably thinking about Skype's SkypeOut service, which does pretty much the same.
The Yahoo-Dialpad deal puts an end to the rumours about the internet giant buying or partnering with Skype. I don't doubt the two have talked - but there is a long way between talking and signing a contract. And now that Yahoo has acquired its own soft phone platform, it has no need to buy or partner with Skype.
I think I would still prefer to use Skype over the Yahoo offering however. The two seem to charge about similar rates, but Skype's rate structure is far more transparent Dialpad's. Besides some of Dialpdad's plans charge a monthly fee. That's a bit too much of a commitment just make cheaper phone calls from your PC. Especially if you have Skype as an alternative.
London based Skype charges €0.017 ($0.021) per minute for calls to most of the developed world. Dialpad offers unlimited calls to the United States for $11.99 per month and goes as low as $0.017 (€ 0.014) for some international calls. But users have to pay a monthly fee to get the lowest rate and the offer is valid for only a limited number of cities, mostly capitals (Bejing, London, Signapore, Paris – Tokyo goes for 3.9 cents).
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