back to article Google battles MicroSkype with 'open' VoIP protocol

Google has moved its Google Talk VoIP infrastructure to Jingle, the voice and media signaling protocol that seeks to provide an open-standard alternative to the proprietary protocols used by the Microsoft-owned Skype and other VoIP technologies. With an email on the XMPP Standards Foundation mailing list, Google's Peter …


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  1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

    The difference

    Skype a global peer-peer voip system, mostly used to make free or very cheap international calls

    GoogleTalk a peer-peer voip system could be used to make free international calls - as long as you are both in the USA.

    1. MarkieMark1


      as a matter of fact, google talk allows free calls from google talk to google talk as skype does - video quality much better at least when the connection is fast - while its mobile rates to the UK for instance are cheaper than skype; the only trouble being, for now, that to add credit you must be in the states - needs an US telephone number connected to the account at least temporarily

      1. hewbass

        ... and you don't even need to connect to gtalk...

        Any old jabber/xmpp server will do (and you still get to talk to people who use gtalk).

        My favourite is prosody.

  2. MarkieMark1
    Paris Hilton

    the question is

    are they going to add encryption of voice/video chat? I've had recent confirmation that as of now there is no actual encryption of the p2p transmissions

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      *exactly the right question..

      I have looked at tons of Skype-replacement wannabees, but they all lack crypto. Some are upfront about it, some you have to prod a bit, and one made me laugh by sending me a whole gob of text to basically excuse having to say "no we don't".

      I'll repeat it here in full:

      --- begin ---

      Some companies in our field claim that they encrypt their traffic. They do so while using proprietary technologies, not open to external scrutiny. We believe that unless you use open technologies, you should not claim that you use encryption.

      At Viber, we believe in being 100% truthful to our users. This applies to everything we do and even more so when it comes to matters of security and encryption. Since Viber uses proprietary technologies, we believe we cannot claim that Viber is truly encrypted and as such, unlike some companies in our field, we do not claim that we are encrypted. We leave the decision of how to use our service and whether to trust its security to our users.

      --- end ---

      Let me translate that into US and UK terms: we offer intercept, but we still want a hug, thank you.

  3. Combat Wombat

    I'll keep using skype for now...

    At least I know my calls aren't being mined for sale to marketers..yet

    1. R 11

      Not being mined?

      And how do you know this?

    2. Little Poppet

      Jingle = Epic Fail

      I'll stick to Skype thank you. I'm already invested into this ecosystem (as are a few million people) - Plus as others have mentioned, I don't fancy investing into the stalk-fest that is Google.

      1. fishman

        As if

        As if Microsoft has an edge in ethics over google.

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Orkut is dead

    Even my 13-year-old niece (in Brazil) has moved on to facebook. I see her adding about 10 new friends each week.

    1. Anonymous Coward


      and how many are 50-year-old men?

      1. Anonymous Coward

        no title required

        I'm not 50.

  5. Justin Clements


    Google, an ad company desperately trying to be a technology company.

    1. Anonymous Coward

      Google Amateurs

      Very much like their joke of a mobile OS. Very amateurish, it takes the most up to date tech for it to run at an acceptable rate. They should look at the competition and learn how to optimise their software with hardware.

      1. M Gale


        So the crappy ARM11 thingie running at 600mhz in my ZTE Racer is the most up to date hardware you can think of? Wow.

        Nice troll, dude. Got me replying anyway.

  6. IGnatius T Foobar

    SIP gateway

    Now all we need is a Jingle-to-SIP gateway and we'll be all set. I'd love to tie Asterisk in.

    1. Anonymous Coward


      maybe . . .

    2. R 11


      Just edit /etc/asterisk/jingle.conf and /etc/asterisk/jabber.conf

      It should take you about 2 minutes to have your asterisk box talking to and receiving calls from Google Talk.

    3. Eugene Crosser


  7. gort

    So it's going to be...

    Jingle All The Way?

  8. AlexV

    We’d like to make the browser the home for innovation in real time communications,

    Why would I want my voip software running in a web browser? I want my voip software to run at startup and always run in the background, but popup and notify me when it needs my attention - which is almost the exact opposite of what I want my web browser to do.

    1. OffBeatMammal

      everything in the browser sucks

      while ChomeOS is great for lots of things the "all int he browser, full screen" is a really painful paradigm.

      In ChromeOS there are some extentions that get around it with popups and notifiers, but it doesn't feel like a "real" OS, more like the old AS400 "windowed" interface (hardly a step into the future)

      Things like VoIP and IM and even utilities like a calculator need to just be available and not be tied to a window

  9. JDX Gold badge


    Does this mean Skype on ChromeOS will never happen? Will Google block it if they are competing?

    Haven't we seen Google try to take over established markets like IM and social networking, and failing, before?

    1. Ilgaz

      being sarcastic or actually don't know ms dinos?

      People sitting and coding a new breed of Skype, something will work on a brand new operating system based on linux, at MS building!

      It would happen if MS got rid of all top management and became a services company like IBM but they are not.

      I seriously doubt even the existing Skype clients except Windows (and perhaps OSX) will be maintained. They will sure try to get rid of qt on Windows version for sure. They hate qt and Nokia is their puppet now.

  10. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge


    Not a good name. Is it the small brother of Skype?

    I propose "Skyprosoft"

  11. stuff and nonesense

    Number of users

    "Skype is not a browser technology. And it doesn't use standard protocols. But it does have the users, which now number 170 million worldwide."

    169,999,999. I stopped using it with the microsoft buyout...

    1. Ilgaz

      Add smart phone users

      When Skype told Nimbuzz, Fring that they can't connect their servers anymore, a very interesting thing happened. People gave up Skype instead of third party apps.

      Most amazing thing is, Nimbuzz and Fring were actually coding a super stable and reliable client for them, for free! I admire their Symbian team but you can't really compete with Nimbuzz and Fring since they were born on mobile. These guys really knows how to code and even sell their (ad free) software.

      One wonders... Were MS guys involved with Skype while they did this stupid policy change? That really sounds, almost shouts like MS.

  12. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Google Updates

    As it happens I uninstalled the talk plugin for gmail last night. I got rather sick of the repos being queried for updates every five minutes ...

  13. petur

    @John Dee

    Then you'll love skype, which uses *your* bandwidth to route its calls.

    It once chewed through most of my allowed bandwidth at a steady 30KB/s for days until I spotted it and uninstalled. Have been standard-compliant ever since :)

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Google are not competing...

    Google are not competing - they are just desperate to get their paws into every pie - not to make money / provide a good service but to tie people in to their adverts.

    The more poeple use Google Search - the more advertisers end up having to use Google and the more then end up paying for those adverts. This increases the cost for the retailer so in turn the customer ends up paying more - it's like a tax.

    I like some Google products but get the feeling they are desparately looking for another revenue stream (and not finding it) or just trying to p*ss on other peoples parades (MS buys Skype so they try and make their VoIP more open).

  15. Anonymous Coward

    You sure about that? 30Kb/s - doubt it...

    "It once chewed through most of my allowed bandwidth at a steady 30KB/s for days until I spotted it and uninstalled. Have been standard-compliant ever since :)"

    You sure about that - I just checked my Skype for Windows and it is typically using between zero and 10-15 bytes (not Kb) per second when idle.

    Standard compliant is great unless you want to call almost anyone - we have both SIP and Skype in the office - 99% of the IP calls come via Skype. I use Skype at home as 99% of people I know have it or can install it easily (minutes) whereas SIP is often far more complex.

    1. The BigYin



      And it will never use one Kb. Not ever. I leave it to you to figure out why.


    2. Ilgaz

      Skype chose him

      I guess he became superpeer (or whatever its called) , gnutella fashion. His bandwidth, configuration (likely a popular router) was enough for Skype to tell his client to route calls.

      This is how P2P in Skype fashion works.

  16. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up

    Great news

    This is a really good move from Google. The Skype Linux client sux and after the buyout we can't rely on updates to Android either. Open standards++

    1. Ian Yates


      Update to Android? Like what? We're still waiting for video calling through Skype.

      I may be in the majority, but video calling is the main reason I have Skype at home, to keep in contact with my distant friends/family.

      Skype on Android would be a killer app if it did video calls, but it's months too late with apps like Fring allowing a get-out to a lot of people.

      As soon as I've found an easy-to-use Windows client that supports video-calling, I'll be switching the silver surfers in my family.

      And a browser-based solution is not an option: they need an icon they can click and leave running in the background.

  17. Anonymous Coward

    Skype say...

    0-4kbps when idle and about 30kbps when actually making a voice call - thats kilobits not kilobytes.

    My fairly average broadband connection gives about 3000-4000kbs download and 300kbs upload - so pretty insignificant.

    1. M Gale

      It's quite possible... make a Skype call over a good dial-up connection of say, 48,000bps. Granted there's a comically large delay, but it's just about, barely, will-do-in-a-pinch possible.

  18. Bilgepipe

    Heh heh heh

    Eight and a half billion dollars.

  19. Anonymous Coward

    You have no friends?

    "And it will never use one Kb. Not ever. I leave it to you to figure out why."

    You have no friends and leave your computer turned off?

  20. petur

    @AC thinking he knows everything of skype

    Skype may select your system to become supernode, at which time it *will* route its handshaking through your system, if you want this or not.

    In my case, 30KB/s was the maximum uplink speed I had, I assume it could have gone faster.

    Skype is a P2P network, 99% of the traffic goes through the systems of users, they only do the authentication.

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