Skype Hiring 20-30 New Engineers for its Mobile Team; Likely to Add Video Calling



GigaOM is reporting that Skype is looking to ramp up hiring very soon, with a large portion of their hires being for their mobile engineering team. They report that as many as 20-30 new engineers will be brought in to tackle their mobile offering – something that’s going to be very important going into 2011 as we see new Android tablets introduced from a variety of different manufacturers.

GigaOM didn’t say how many of the new hires would be for their Android efforts, but they did single out iOS and Android as the two platforms for which they were looking for developers. If we assume that half of the 20-30 new engineers will be focusing on the Android-based product, then that’s a lot of horsepower behind a product that desperately needs work. Even just 5 of those engineers would help.

While the latest version of Skype is miles ahead of the Skype Lite beta we had to put up with a while ago, it’s still quite bad. WiFi calling is great, but people want to be able to call over their 3G networks to save money. That’s the main reason it’s only enjoying 3 stars in the market opposed to 4 or 4 and a half.

But I’m not so sure it’s a technical issue. In fact, I’m almost 100% certain it’s not: what’s more likely is carrier resistance. Of course they won’t want you to use Skype over using their voice network: you’d never get close to that overage mark if that were the case! Another feature we’ve been waiting for is video calling, and I’m sure this is what the added firepower is for.

Skype originally promised it’d be out before the end of the year, but I have a feeling they are having difficulties meeting that window. While competitors make their way to market with their own video-calling solutions, users are beginning to dump Skype to look for alternatives, and they just can’t have that. It’s good to see they’re finally getting a move on, but they’d better hurry before it’s too late.

Quentyn Kennemer
The "Google Phone" sounded too awesome to pass up, so I bought a G1. The rest is history. And yes, I know my name isn't Wilson.

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  1. Video calling in Skype would just about be the best news ever. This is the NUMBER ONE feature of any app I have been waiting for. I do video calls through SKype at least once a week. WOuld be great not to have to be forced to use the laptop!

  2. i second that notion.

  3. Too little, too late. Skype is finished. They had their chance two years ago to produce a proper voip app for the G1, and for whatever reason they didn’t. Now their customers are all on Google Voice and won’t be switching back.

  4. Sure has taken them long enough.
    I’m still upset about them pulling support from Fring. Skype video calling worked terrific with Fring until they got mad someone beat them too it………

  5. Skype has a history of designing and releasing crappy guis to go with a really nice encrypted protocol. Maybe there’s still hope for them after all but I wouldn’t count on it.

  6. I’m not sure why everyone’s hating on the Skype app. I got it on my G2 and its working brilliantly well (especially on EDGE) compared to the other VoIP solutions I used in the market. It’s fast and snappy, it does calls and chat. Uses the Cloud2Phone stuff on 2.2 so battery life doesn’t suffer at all. What more do I want? Videocalling is overrated and the only reason why everyone wants it is because they’re jealous of fecestime lol. Videocalling was never popular anyway (mostly because nobody wants to talk on speaker all the time) until Apple announced it. I still don’t get why it became popular all of a sudden, other than the fact that Apple did it.

    The only thing is that it didnt work at all on my modded CM6 G1, but that’s no wonder.

  7. i like this site its awsome

  8. @9a3… you’re an idiot. Just because iphone releases something doesn’t mean the whole world revolves around it. People have been wanting usable video calling forever. Just because you don’t see a need for it doesn’t mean therethere isn’t one.
    People were already using it with fring, and are pissed that option went away while the lame official app didn’t offer it.

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