EQO: Wonky but it works
So I downloaded EQO - the app that lets you chat and make calls over Skype from your mobile phone. Which sounds cool, but I was confused on how exactly it worked so I just downloaded it. Well it turns out that it installs a little agent that runs in your toolbar alongside Skype on your PC and essentially makes your phone work like a remote control to manage calls and redirect chat messages. Ahh! Interesting!
It's sort of like Avvenu or Orb for IM. Wild. I connect my phone to the EQO server, it then connects to my home machine, then to make initiate call to a Skype user EQO uses SkypeOut to call you on your mobile phone, and then connects to your contact. You can even make calls to other real phone numbers - creating simultaneous Out calls via conferencing from your PC. All this works in reverse as well - if you get a Skype call on your home PC, it'll forward the new call alert to your mobile, where you can choose to "answer" it or not, and if you do, it'll then forward the VoIP call over Out via the cellular network to your mobile. This also works for remote IM Messages as well.
The set up had way too many steps and the whole thing is a bit kludgy, by hey, it works right? Well, it's definitely beta - there were some weird screen issues on startup and the mobile client (it's in Java) died when I tried start a chat session but hey. I mean, I was able to make and receive VoIP calls from my normal cellular phone which is pretty cool. I mean, it's wonky, but it works.
These guys are soooo looking to get bought by eBay it's amazing, no? From the site design to the service, it's all made to blend with Skype. I hope they're cheap, this sort of thing should be baked right into the Skype client and other services like Yahoo! Messenger to begin with.