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Will Facebook battle Skype, Google Voice with VoIP calling?

Facebook has remained mum on the subject of the alleged Facebook phone, but a photo has surfaced revealing the website’s interest in other areas of communication. Multiple sources have spotted what looks like a calling function on the site.

Various users saw a “call” icon appear on their screens, and while it didn’t connect, it would explain Facebook’s interest in VoIP. Earlier this year, Skype integrated Facebook into its upgrade, and there was an incident last year where various references to the popular VoIP popped up in Facebook code. But Facebook has yet to feature Skype or any other voice chat client on its site, and that could be because it plans to do it in-house. Further possible evidence suggesting Facebook is doing this without Skype’s involvement? InsideFacebook points out that a job posting for a “Network Engineer – Voice” for the company has been removed. Still, that could be anything from a developer for the hypothetical phone software, to an in-office IT position.

Google’s own VoIP has been extremely popular, and as the two are generally pitted against each other, it would be one more arena that Facebook would compete in. It’s swiftly becoming a large-scale communication system, and will start introducing its Messages feature to more and more users in the near future. Facebook has time and time again denied the title of “e-mail killer,” but it at least should start owning up to its position as verifiable opponent – especially if (really, when) it introduces voice calling.

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