Tokyo: Japan’s number-two telecom operator KDDI said Monday it had formed a strategic tie-up with Skype to bring the Internet-based communication services to mobile smartphone users.
KDDI’s mobile service, operating under the “au” brand, will start new apps from November for selected handsets and offer Skype-to-Skype calls.
Details of the planned service, including prices, are yet to be released.
Skype, which was founded in 2003, bypasses the standard telephone network by channeling voice, video and text conversations over the Internet.
KDDI hopes to gradually expand the service to fixed-line telephone and other services.
“Skype on au is a breakthrough in giving customers in Japan unlimited, global communications options, while expanding their calling community to hundreds of millions of Skype users worldwide,” said KDDI senior vice president Takashi Tanaka.