Fring climbs into Windows

Mobile VoIP firm Fring unveiled a version of its client for Windows Mobile 5 and 6 devices on Wednesday, bringing the power of Skype, Google Talk, MSN Messenger, twitter and a whole raft of SIP providers to a batch of new devices.

Fring is a free to download mobile phone application that offers internet telephony calls either cheaply or free, depending on whether the user is using a 3G or wifi connection.

The platform interoperates with Skype, Google Talk, MSN Messenger, twitter and just about any SIP-based providers and is already available for the Symbian OS. Java and UIQ versions are also in the works. met with Fring’s VP of product marketing, Roy Timor-Rousso, earlier this week and he pitched the service as a way to save mobile users money by utilising free wifi internet access or data plans over 3G or GPRS, instead of costly mobile minutes.

The only real shame is that mobile operators are largely hostile to third party VoIP applications. 3 UK may well have embraced Skype with open arms but T-Mobile expressly forbids the use of VoIP or peer to peer applications on its data network on all but its Web ‘n’ Walk Max plan, which costs £57.50 per month. Vodafone meanwhile, insists on charging for VoIP usage by the kilobyte and will not include it in its flat rate data packages.

However, Timor-Rousso anticipates that more operators will follow 3’s lead and start bundling VoIP utilities in with their existing packages. Although he did concede that many operators are less threatened by own brand VoIP services, adding that white labelling is not something Fring is willing to do.

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