The Skype deal with Verizon Wireless proves the old adage of "what's old is new again."
Fearing that throngs of Skype users would do to their EVDO network what the iPhone has done to AT+T, Verizon went with a circuit switched solution that is similar to what Three in the UK has had since 2008 if memory serves.
The non 3G issue revolves around capacity issues that even Skype's super compression technology couldn't overcome. What's intersting though is the new Skype Nokia client for the N and E series devices as well as the tightly woven experience on the Nokia N900 shows those of us that Skype calls over 3G on GSM can work, does work and will work.
This for Skype is a huge win as it shows that one of the most conservative carriers in the world has broken ranks, but for Verizon Wireless it shows how much clout the voice folks still have vs. data guys.
The lack of WiFi support supports this thesis.
The service launches in March and will be on nine Smartphones. The app will run in the background and make it possible for Skype users to be called for free.
Details are here: http://www.verizonwireless.com/skypemobile
What I like is as an unlimited Verizon user with a Droid is that I am far more reachable and not tethered to a PC in the USA any more than I am in London.
I'll go deeper into why this is a win for Skype in a follow up post.