No sooner have Microsoft got their hands on Skype (for a huge wad of cash) than they begin to cull the competition. Digium who develop Asterix – who many will know have been working hard to provide alternative PBX systems in the linux environment had a skype capability. Not any more. Digium have issued a letter to their customers.
Skype for Asterisk will not be available for sale or activation after July 26, 2011.
Skype for Asterisk was developed by Digium in cooperation with Skype. It
includes proprietary software from Skype that allows Asterisk to join the Skype
network as a native client. Skype has decided not to renew the agreement that
permits us to package this proprietary software. Therefore Skype for Asterisk
sales and activations will cease on July 26, 2011.
This change should not affect any existing users of Skype for Asterisk.
Representatives of Skype have assured us that they will continue to support and
maintain the Skype for Asterisk software for a period of two years thereafter,
as specified in the agreement with Digium. We expect that users of Skype for
Asterisk will be able to continue using their Asterisk systems on the Skype
network until at least July 26, 2013. Skype may extend this at their
Skype for Asterisk remains for sale and activation until July 26, 2011.
Please complete any purchases and activations before that date.
The significance here is that Microsoft seek to remove competition wherever they find it. I heard a Microsoft staffer mention exactly this scenario at an event in Belfast yesterday. They are in fact brazen about it now since they think they are unassailable. Perhaps Skype will be most peoples first experience of the MS Borg mentality – “You will be assimiliated” – and the value and loyalty built up by Skype will be sorely tested if this is the case.
How many times have we seen Microsoft and others acquiring that which they seem unable to do themselves in order to remove “wrinkles” in their plan for complete global domination ? </Rant>