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August 31, 2007

Using Skype on a PDA or Smartphone

Posted in: VOIP Advice

Let’s face it; if VoIP is to move with the times, their need to be more options for using your service on the move.  More and more cellphone manufacturers and networks are opening up their phones to the use of VoIP over WiFi, with many of them creating new charging plans for the privilege.  The reality is, though, that using VoIP on the move is nothing new, and you probably have all the kit you need right now to start taking advantage.

Skype for Pocket PC has been around for a while now; yet with all the hype surrounding Mobile VoIP, you’d be forgiven for thinking there is such a complex minefield of options, that you’d rather just tether yourself to your PC and be done with it.  That’s why I thought I’d write this gentle reminder to all those readers who feel like they’re missing out, and show you how to get the most of Skype on the move, using your PDA or Smartphone.

To use Skype for Pocket PC you’ll need a minimum 400 MHz processor, Wi-Fi capability, and Windows Mobile 2003 or later. Once you’ve got all that, here’s how to get on the road:

1. Update the version of Activesync on your PDA or Smartphone, in order to make file transfer and updates easier.  You’ll find the latest release at www.microsoft.com

2. Go to the downloads page at www.Skype.com and choose the Pocket PC option.  The Skype for Pocket PC application will be downloaded to your desktop PC or laptop.

3. Open up the application and complete the installation steps.

4. The installer will copy the necessary files to your ActiveSync directory. Click Finish to complete the file copy.

5. A dialogue box will appear, stating: “On the next mobile device connection, the installed applications will be downloaded to the device” Click OK to continue.

6. If it’s not already connected, connect your handheld to your computer.

7. ActiveSync will copy the CAB file to your Pocket PC or SmartPhone and install the Skype application.Skype will now be available in your Program list. 

No prizes for guessing that you’ll need an active Internet connection from your handheld, via WiFi or otherwise.  Once you’ve established a connection, you just login to Skype in the usual way.

If you’ve tried Skype for Pocket PC, tell us about your experiences.  What problems have you encountered?  How does it compare with other Mobile VoIP services you’ve used?  As ever, leave your comments below.  Best of luck!

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