While analog telephone adapters aren’t exactly advanced technology these days, a version that works with Skype notes a mention. Skype announced the Freetalk Connect-Me home phone adapter, a piece of technology that acts as the middle man between a broadband Internet connection and an ordinary wired or cordless telephone. The adapter also allows the user to keep a traditional landline and switch between the two services. On the bottom of the device, users will find an Ethernet port as well as two ports for phone lines. The device stores up to 100 numbers for speed dialing and is priced at $39.99.
While a user can make free Skype-to-Skype calls, they will have to purchase a plan in order to call landlines from the Skype handset. While the initial $39.99 adapter comes with 60 minutes of free landline calling, an more expensive $59.99 model comes with 12 months of landline calls as well as 200 minutes of international calls. Pricing for the year-long phone service is identical to Magic Jack which is priced at $19.99 per year. For users looking for a more friendly international calling package, another package priced at $59.99 allows for 3 months of unlimited international calling.
In addition to the adapter, Skype also announced a new Skype-ready cordless phone manufactured by General Electric. The phone is priced at $69.99 and users can purchase similar calling packages up to $89.99 for unlimited nationwide calling for 12 months or unlimited international calling over three months.
Skype also recently announced the rollout of a rebranded version of Skype Access. Attempting to provide low cost Wi-Fi access for business travelers, the Skype WiFi application allows users to fund the Skype credit account and purchase Wi-Fi access when in airports, hotels and other public places. While prices vary based on the location, prices start as low as 6 cents minute and users only pay for time rather than for bandwidth used.