Skype offers cut-price premium rates

06 April 2007
Skype users will be able to call premium rate numbers in the UK at reduced rates for the first time.

The voice over internet protocol (VoIP) technology is being rolled out to all '09' numbers, enabling 171 million registered Skype users across the world to call UK premium lines.

Premium phone lines typically provide entertainment services such as chat, horoscopes, and dating.

But they also connect consumers up to counselling and advisory services.

Although Skype brought many of its users on board by offering free internet-carried calls between friends and family who have both downloaded its technology, calling from a Skype phone to a non-Skype landline or mobile costs the customer.

While the cheapest calls to 'band 1' premium rate numbers will cost 29p under the new price plans, the cost will rise to £1.73 per minute depending on the service provider at source.

Premium rate numbers are more expensive to call than ordinary landline and mobile phone numbers and Skype has said it will introduce voice prompts 'shortly' to remind customers of this fact.

Last month, Skype announced the 500 millionth customer had downloaded its package.

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