If you've had problems with SkypeOut in the last 30 days add a comment or send a trackback. Same if you couldn't buy Skype minutes.
I suspect it is time to report loudly that SkypeOut doesn't work all the time, while making account payments can still present "rejection" problems. Neville wrote a post yesterday, and it is a well timed reminder. There should be little tolerance for poor quality connections. Similarly stories of credit card problems / approval flags I've had personally and have know applied to my friends.
These occurances are enough to make people mad enough to write in the Skype Forums, and as always these are just the tip of the iceberg. I read the Skype forums regularly and complaints on SkypeOut quality and purchasing Skypeout Minutes are regular. What percentage we don't know? Are failure rates higher than average? We don't know. Are they for specific countries? We don't know. They often appear to relate to the more expensive calls to countries where the infrastructure is stretched, expensive to access etc. Then we don't know.
Today I got a busy signal on two foreign SkypeOut calls and then the third one connected with quality so poor that I cancelled the call. Skype charged me .138 Euro cents for that call being a 40 second failure to a foreign mobile. For the times it has worked well I sort of forgive them. Still it is not what one wants or is trained for. My .138 cents is gone.
Generally I've had real success to landlines, and a rougher time to mobiles. I just tried another call to a different country and it failed again the first two times. I also got "internal error" this time. Finally third time I got his voice mail and it was clear as anything. Is the fact I get "busy" signals a sign that Skype's network connections are overloaded. Or are telecoms playing another game in the background. Blocking Skype or making Skype calls difficult?
We need to hear more from Skype on this one. Skype is challenging the telecoms, their business models and making a mockery of SIP initiatives. I don't think they started out with an interconnect plan at the beginning, more likely it became a business opportunity and it was demanded by Customers. What's being fixed now? What's the timetable?
On balance failed calls / poor QOS make users mad, and means SkypeOut costs more than it should. It's more likely to annoy new users than those that have used it for a long time with success. Today the product is no longer in beta. I don't think I see any beta on SkypeOut. For new users using SkypeOut I'd be willing to bet the majority don't care about VoIP and many won't have tried out other services. So the service and connection paradigm is still PSTN which works.
A few users like me have tried all sorts of VoIP appications. The other one I live with daily is Vonage which in my view sucks. International calls on it are twice the price of SkypeOut and for the most part half the quality even on local calls. That is my experience. So my judgement and damnation of one poor interconnect is "I'll try it later" and looking at the "broader" picture. New Skype users won't give Skype this kind of slack and I really shouldn't either. Thanks Neville!
And wow! are they saying things.............
They have coughed up money to buy credit to use a service which, for one reason or another, doesn't seem to be delivering.............And they don't seem to be getting answers from Skype.
....And they'll tell their friends: "Yeah, Skype's cool but calling [friend X] in [country Y] just doesn't work."
Skype Has a Problem With SkypeOut
I totally agree with you. My company is in the Credit Card business and it seems to me that Skype is a good product that is struggling with a poor CC solution. All these things can and must be addressed an soon. There are lots of other people willing to make it work if Skype can not.
forum.skype.com :: moneybookers update
By contrast a useful review of BT communicator. Here's Martin's pitch.
I use it for business calls away from home because I’ve experienced mixed results with SkypeOut. Hardly the wave of the future, but better than nothing.
Telepocalypse BT Communicator