Skype in 2010: Marriage, Divorce, Therapy, Lawsuit, Outage And Lots More!

by Gaurav Kheterpal on December 29, 2010

It has been a year of mixed fortunes for Skype, widely renowned as the big daddy of Internet Telephony world. It was believed that Cisco and Google were potentially vying for the acquisition of the VoIP giant but these rumors were quickly dismissed as Skype went on to file a $100 million IPO.

It’s often said that There are no friends in the business world and Skype seems to be no exception to that rule. Fring and Nimbuzz grew too quick to Skype’s comfort and as a result, fell out of favor with the VoIP giant this year. At the same time, Skype went all guns blazing to forge high profile partnerships with several technology heavyweights including Facebook and Verizon.

Despite all these highs and lows, I strongly believe that year 2010 has well and truly established Skype as the “modern-age hi-tech relationship tool”. With marriages, divorces, therapy, counseling and lots more, Skype has been credited with several firsts this year. And just in case, it still doesn’t sound interesting enough – Skype has managed to end the year with a massive never-seen-anything-like-that-before outage and yet another patent infringement lawsuit.

Until few years ago, marriages were made in heaven. Now, a significant number of marriages are made on the Internet and Skype. Couples who’ve never met in person have happily tied the knot over Skype. Gays have used it as a tool for “E-marriage” to work around the legal implications of same-sex marriages. It has been a saving grace for many couples whose marriage plans have been threatened by adverse natural calamities such as volcanoes and floods.

As bizarre as it may sound, there’s even been a Skype divorce this year. A Muslim man in India who told his wife “I divorce thee” three times in an online Skype conversation was told that it accounts for a legal separation. To make matters worse, the man was then told that his wife would have to first marry another man before she could remarry him.

Skype has been a blessing in disguise for betterment of human health as well. A number of counselors and therapists claim to have effectively used Skype to help patients. Some hospitals such as UCSF have used it as a non-intrusive means for helping connect hospital inpatients with family members and friends.

However, not everything has gone as per plan for Skype this year. The VoIP giant had a forgettable holiday season primarily due to a massive outage which affected millions of users worldwide. Though Skype blamed it on a few errant Windows-based supernodes, the outage raised concerns over the service’s reliability and robustness. To make matters worse, the VoIP giant was served with a patent infringement lawsuit by Gradient Enterprises, alleging the way Skype has setup its network infrastructure infringes on patents it holds.

All in all, it’s been hell of a year for Skype. What do you think?

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Written by: Gaurav Kheterpal. >. Follow > by: RSS>, Twitter >, >, or Friendfeed >

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