Skype In? Wireless? Wow. Well, you might think so. Or perhaps you'd call it a "bodge"?

by Guy Kewney | posted on 18 October 2004

Plug an ordinary phone into your computer, and use it to make outgoing Skype calls. Great! - but what about incoming? OK, turn it round: plug your computer into the phone socket, and let it take ordinary incoming Skype calls and forward them to you. Does it work?

Guy Kewney

Frankly, until someone gets a sample of cuPhone's software and hardware, it's very hard to be sure exactly how it might do all the things they claim for it. But it should be able to dial phone numbers. Probably.

The web site doesn't exactly inspire confidence. If their aim was to appear amateur and enthusiastic, then they would have succeeded very well.

That conceded, there should be some demand from people who want to receive, as well as make, connections between Skype and the public phone network.

The basic products are:

1) A USB-to-phone socket; plug it into the PC port, and plug a standard phone into the RJ11 socket, and set up your PC phone to use that as the audio device. It also make the phone ring and, of course, it means you can plug a standard DECT (or other) cordless phone in.

Whether it works for dialling, remains to be seen.

2) A USB phone which will work with any IP phone service.

3) A Personal Phone Gateway. Two versions: a USB gateway and another that plugs into the PCI bus.

The gateway allows your incoming Skype calls to be forwarded to any phone - not free, because the gateway dials out using your normal phone line - when you're away from the PC.

The way the web site puts it: "Do you want to forward your Skype's call to your cell phone (or any phone number)? Click here to see how you can never miss your Skype's Call again."

We'll ask cuPhone for a sample to test, and (if they respond) report further.

Skype goes wireless? Erm, well, you have a cordless phone, don't you? - You can discuss this article on our discussion board.