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Skype’s Most Excellent Developers
[August 31, 2005]

Skype’s Most Excellent Developers


Skype announces the winners of its first developer’s contest.
 
By DAVID SIMS
TMCnet CRM Alert Columnist
 
What do Jybe, Gizmoz, Pamela Basic, Spontania and Yabber Nut have in common, besides being good names for hip-hop acts?
 
They’re the winners in Skype’s first developer competition. First prize was 2,000 euros and the sort of free publicity they get from places such as, oh, here, for example.
 
Jybe took first prize. More than 100 developers entered the competition, open to pretty much anyone. Luxembourg-based Skype claims there are currently over 400 hardware and software products that integrate with Skype.
 
Niklas Zennstrom, Skype CEO and co-founder described the developer competition as “fierce,” saying Khaos Labs, Columbus CRM, ISkoot, Audiomatic and SalesForce.com turned in especially notable products.

 
Jybe won the top award of 2,000 euros for a plug-in that lets webmasters enable Skype and call forwarding, presence, browser synchronization and auto-responding features on their sites.
 
Khaos Labs received a special mention for its Free ActiveS COM wrapper, which has been used by numerous other developers to help build a range of Skype Extras, which are readily available for download from the Skype Developer Zone.
 
To try to boost interest in its Developer Program, Skype is holding a series of partner events around the world where partners and developers can get together. The next one is September 22 in Palo Alto, then on October 12 there’s one in London, and in Tokyo on November 7.
 
Partners can also visit the Skype Developer Zone at http://share.skype.com/sdp.
 
Some of the finalists in the Skype Developer Competition, and other showcase products:
 
Jybe, a tool for sharing office documents and real-time collaboration over the web with Skype contacts. (http://www.jybe.com)
 
Dial Mp3, which allows you to listen to any mp3 in your collection on your phone. (http://www.voxu.com/projects/DialMP3/)
 
Pamela Basic, a personal assistant for Skype that answers calls and chats for you in 32 languages when you are away. (http://www.pamela-systems.com)
 
Gizmoz, which lets all Skype users communicate with “animated, 3D talking headz.” (http://www.gizmoz.com)
 
Yabber Nut Answer Machine for Skype, which offers voicemail, delayed messaging and allows you to receive and send messages when away from the computer.
 
Spontania Video4IM, a video product. (http://www.video4im.com)
 
Commercial mentions include Columbus CRM, a product integrating Skype with CRM; ISkoot, a free call forwarding product; Audiomatic, voice activated macros including Skype commands and SalesForce CRM integration.
 
Skype is available in 27 languages and company officials claim it’s “the fastest growing voice communications offering worldwide.” They may have a point -- since its launch in August 2003, Skype has been downloaded more than 155 million times in 225 countries and territories. Over 52 million people registered to use Skype's free services, with over 3 million simultaneous users and more than 2 million premium customers.
 
Skype Technologies is privately held and backed by international venture capital firms, including Bessemer Venture Partners, Draper Fisher Jurvetson, Index Ventures, and Mangrove Capital Partners.
 
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David Sims is contributing editor for TMCnet. For more articles by David Sims, please visit:
 
 

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