This has been coming for a long time, but starting tomorrow (March 22) you can download (if you have a Windows machine, that is) the new Yahoo IM client with full inbound and outbound VOIP capabilities. That means that, like Skype, users will be able to receive call from, and make calls to, any normal telephone (standard telephone service is often referred to as “POTS”). Screen shot is below.
Pricing is competitve to Skype:
- Phone Out: Call normal phone numbers in 180 or so countries from your PC. Pricing starts at $0.02 per minute. For more on rates, see here.
- Phone In: (for U.S., France and UK users only) – Receive calls on your PC from traditional and mobile phones for $2.99 per month or $29.90 per year.
- Free Voicemail: Free voicemail for inbound calls, and voicemail messages are linked from Yahoo Mail.
Phone Out on Yahoo is a little cheaper than Skype on average (Skype rates, in Euros, are here). Phone In is also cheaper – Skype charges 30 Euros per year for their comparable product. Skype has video calls, of course, and Yahoo doesn’t. Neither company frustratingly, allows for call recording (Gizmo has this feature and I love it).
Yahoo licenses GIPS VoiceEngine Multimedia infrastructure for the back end VOIP technology.