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Skype helps Chrome in fight against IE

o Jasper Bakker
25.01.2010 kl 21:35 |

Chrome enters Windows PC's through Skype. The company has a quiet deal with Google. The installation of Chrome is offered only to Internet Explorer users.

 

Chrome enters Windows PC's through Skype. The company has a quiet deal with Google. The installation of Chrome is offered only to Internet Explorer users.

Skype spokeswoman Jacqueline Marshall confirms to Dutch ict-newssite Webwereld that this is a global distribution deal. "Chrome is only offered to users who have Microsoft Internet Explorer as their default browser."

Default is opt-out

The Google browser is offered as an option for both new installations and updates of Skype. The choice for installation of Chrome is on by default. Marshall confirmed that the default setting is opt-out.

When updating Skype a screen pops up offering the free Chrome browser. "Faster and safer web browsing. Less crashes thanks to separate tabs", praises the screen that occurs in between the Skype installation.

The optional, but checked, installation of Chrome is in effect since Skype version 4.0.0.224, which was released in March last year. Neither Skype nor Google have given this matter any publicity. The only mention, in addition to the option during the installation process itself, is a brief remark in the release notes for 4.0.0.224.

Major Partner

Marshall confirms that the distribution happens since the second quarter of 2009. She does not explain why the deal was kept so quiet. But she does say that the Chrome-distribution is derived from the existing distribution deal for the Google Toolbar for Internet Explorer. That is also offered both for installation and upgrade of the Skype VoIP software. The Google Toolbar is also an opt-out, on default the Toolbar is installed.

The VoIP provider is an important partner for Google. The VoIP software has a worldwide user baseof over 520 million users, of which 40 million were added in the third quarter of last year. Also, according to TeleGeography, Skype is good for 12 percent of all international calling minutes. In 2008 that was only 8 percent.

eBay and Google interested

The relationship between Skype and Google had nearly been much closer. The Internet giant almost bought eBay's former daughter. In November the auction site completed the divestment of Skype. That was possible due to the settlement of lawsuits by the original owners of Skype.

Those founders now receive a 14 percent interest in the privatized company. In return, they formally transfer the core technology of Skype to the VoIP-company. That peer-to-peer technology was still owned by their company Joltid.

When eBay bought Skype in 2005 for nearly 4 billion dollars it did not buy that core technology. The auction site only bought the name and a license to use the underlying P2P software for the VoIP-client. During the takeover soap opera surrounding the former eBay subsidiary it also come to light that Google was interested in buying Skype. However, in September the search engine backed away from the legal claims of Joltid. Two months later, Google acquired Skype clone Gizmo5.

Keywords: Telecommunication  
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