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I've been wanting to stop using Skype for quite a while, but now that they're being bought by Microsoft, I think it's about time to spring into action.

I use Skype mainly to call landlines abroad - I don't use messaging at all. I should also mention that I'm on Ubuntu.

Doing a quick Google search brings up tonnes of results, half of which seem outdated, the other half appears to be spam. But still, I managed to gather that I will probably need to download a client such as QuteCom, and register with a SIP provider, is that right?

I'm based in the UK, so I'd imagine I need a UK SIP provider? Has anyone got experience with any good ones?

Or am I barking up the completely wrong tree?

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3 Answers

up vote 1 down vote accepted

You are on the right path: you will need a SIP provider, like Skype is, only with better software and extras.

As I have been experiencing with them, most SIP providers are international. I've been using FreeCall for some time now. The prices are okay, almost always available, their software doesn't suck, though I almost exclusively use the web based client.

At home I have an VoIP router (AVM Fritz 7270) which transparently chooses the right SIP provider depending on the number being called.

On my mobile device (Nokia N97) i installed their Symbian app (also available for Android and iPhone ) to make phone calls, using phone contacts seamlessly. I am looking forward to see an update which will allow to send text messages (SMS).

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Thanks, I found diamondcard.us which seems to be a great little company, despite their dreadful website. As a client I installed Egika, which is in part funded by DiamondCard. –  andreas May 15 '11 at 15:17
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I posted about this just recently actually, so here was my response before:

I assume you're switching due to today's business deal between Skype and Microsoft. You aren't alone!

An easy one to acquire now is Google Talk. It's quite similar to Skype, with full video calling and chat. Living in the USA, Canada, and some other countries, you can even make calls for free; there is a browser plugin directly from Gmail that will do that. Almost all the features can be used from the site, with a small plugin.

Requires Windows XP +
or Mac OS X 10.4 +
or Linux

Google is definitely leading something interesting here, just from the browser.

My Main concern with this is that it may not be available in your country, but you can try.

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Thanks Simon, I had a look but unfortunately not available in the UK yet. Looks awesome though! –  andreas May 15 '11 at 15:11
    
Ah okay. The Google Talk client itself is very similar to Skype in some ways, it will still work pc-to-pc. Hopefully they bring it to your country soon! –  Simon Sheehan May 15 '11 at 15:12
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You want to go with a standard SIP provider and then you can use a standard phone connected to a voip gateway (Linksys SPA3102) or do like I have done and get a Snom 370 or other IP Phone. With either you simply connect it to your Voip account from someone like callcentric.com or Voip.ms ... I do with the pay as you go plans and I've been averaging $12 month in calls.

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