Skype and iSkoot just launched a new co-marketing agreement to allow Java-enabled phones and higher-end smartphones to make Skype calls through the regular cellphone network. While it's true that using iSkoot will allow you to make calls on the Skype network by going through an iSkoot gateway first, it does not eliminate cellphone fees that you incur when you're calling iSkoot. This means you're using up your minutes, tunneling through the Skype system which adds delay to your system. Plus, if you're calling through the SkypeOut system, you'll be charged for SkypeOut usage as well.

The practical uses we can see for iSkoot is if you want to call a user on Skype that's located in another country. This will save international charges and just use up your standard minutes. Another idea would be to add the iSkoot gateway number as your "unlimited dialing" entry, say, on T-Mobile's upcoming 5 plan. This way you get unlimited free calling to the iSkoot gateway, which then pipes out your call to anybody in the world. In that situation all you pay is SkypeOut. Anyone see any other money-saving uses for iSkoot and Skype?

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Press Release [iSkoot via PC World]