3 Italy launches VoIP without Skype

Hutchison Whampoa's 3G business, 3 Italy, launched an international VoIP service using its own platform instead of Skype. The International No Limit VoIP plan allows customers to call 23 countries at the rate of about 6 cents per hour, with a monthly subscription of $18. During the 3GSM World Congress last month, Skype and Hutchison announced plans to put Skype on VoIP-enabled phones with the idea that Hutchison's 3G businesses would offer them. It doesn't appear Hutchison is abandoning Skype, however, just trying to differentiate its offerings. This international plan doesn't require a VoIP client in the handset since it is server-based. Skype services are expected to be available from 3 Italy via a 3G data card in the near future as the operator is hoping to launch Skype-enabled handsets, possibly with Nokia, in the summer.

To read more about 3 Italy's VoIP calling plan:
- check out this article from telecoms.com (sub. req.)