The newly manufactured i-mate PDA2K and i-mate PDA2 handsets will be produced with Skype's software preloaded, enabling i-mate owners to use Skype immediately on start-up of their device. Both handsets are dual mode GSM/GPRS Wifi handsets that, with Skype included, allow users to make free voice calls wherever they are worldwide. Skype software will also be installed on new i-mate JAMs.
i-mate, an exhibitor at the 3GSM World Congress, will host a press and industry briefing on its agreement with Skype at a function aboard i-mate's corporate yacht in Cannes on the evening of 14 February, 2005.
i-mate's founder and chief executive, Jim Morrison, commented: "In line with our continuing commitment to provide customers with the value added benefits they require, this partnership with Skype is a natural way for i-mate to deliver to its customers a fully
functional global VoIP service. As i-mate grows across the world we are dedicated to meeting our customers' needs in providing them with only the best available services, Skype, we believe, is one of those."
"Skype is committed to working with like-minded companies to innovate and expand platform choice and communications mobility for all our users," said Niklas Zennstrom, Skype CEO and co-founder. "Our partnership with i-mate is a step forward for offering Skype on a variety of wireless-enabled devices."
The VoIP market is growing rapidly, as individuals and enterprises demand new communication options at reduced prices. i-mate handset owners now have the ability to make voice calls over the Internet through Wireless LAN for a fraction of the cost of a traditional phone call.
i-mate's global headquarters are in Dubai, and it is steadily building on its Middle Eastern market leadership with recent expansion into the UK and Italy, and with plans underway for the US i-mate launch.