Future of Skype Vs. Telcos Battle for Long Distance Calls

In the article “SMS Traffic On Decline”, we discussed how the advent of easier, fun-to-use and free point-to-point messaging applications can provoke a steep fall in SMS traffic generated. With a similar eye we will now analyze how is the voice traffic doing with telecom operators looking to adopt fast data technologies.

The global decline in voice shares, although, has little fraction in Pakistan, but it does hint about the future. Operators might fight even more to capture the maximum voice share if they wish to stay mast to their CS networks.

As reported by TeleGeography- a telecommunications market research and consulting firm, the international long distance traffic grew 4% in 2011 and hit 438 billion minutes. This however, was, less than one-third of pre-skype era growth rate rate, that is 13% on an average. That shows a staggering decline! The question is, where have the minutes gone? Amazingly, the decline in voice minutes correspond to a soaring and roaring growth in the Skype’s cross-border traffic.

International Long Distance Traffic Growth, Carriers vs. Skype

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According to the same research group, Skype-to-Skype calls grew 48% percent last year to 145 billion minutes. Skype added more minutes of international traffic than all the mobile companies combined.

The simple voice application which, earlier this year, pitched-in with Facebook to offer video calls has become one of the mainstream sources of long distance as well as conference communication. From corporate industry to news reporting television channels use Skype for their official and non-official communication.

Skype applications are available for all smartphone operating systems and can be thus utilized with speedy or non-speedy data connection for voice and video calling. In the telecom world particularly, international recruiters include their Skype IDs in signatures to facilitate the assessment process.

Given the big numbers shared above, if it all continues even at the current rate, mobile operators will soon have to run stealing for international voice traffic, prices of which have dwindled significantly in Pakistan at least.

Its only the matter of time (and smartphones to get popular in Pakistan) for local market to follow the global trend.


  • logitech

    i think only till 3G arrives in pakistan, people will be able to use skype on their smartphones properly…

  • I try my best not to pay to telecoms by not using my network. I am doing this since Govt increased Telecom taxes then Telecoms also implemented different extra charges.

    I prefer Viber, Gmail, Twitter, Skype for text, voice and data sharing over Link DSL wifi.

  • usman

    rates of call to Pakistan is skyrocketing.
    before this rate increase i was getting 35 minute with 1BD from a local carrier.now after this rate increase for foreign calls in Pakistan.i am getting only 18 minutes with 1BD.so i decide to use skype from now on for making calls to Pakistan.i have a smartphone and a wifi internet why not make use for them.people are looking this way now. because Pakistani GOV making international call expansive for them.
    wessay doosrey countries may calls susti hoti hain.lekin pakistan GOV hamesha ulta hi chalti hey.koi na koi kaam chahye awam per torture kernay ka.or bajjaye overseas ko koi re leaf denney k ulta onney hi tung ker rahhey hain.

  • Meraj Khattak

    Yes. Unless we have a more faster internet available over phone, we won’t be able to do a smooth call over Skype.

  • 3G 4G LTE will launched all over the world then what will Skype do specially with its paid calls to any phone when everyone has 3g and 4g and Skype in their phone then no body will buy Skype vouchers.

  • Junaid

    Skype if good

  • Salman Abbas

    Skype is so expensive. I use Google Voice, cheap and simple. A $10 recharge lasts 3 months for me :P

    • Nadeem

      Do you use Google Voice in Pakistan?

      • Salman Abbas

        Yeah but occasionally, mostly for international clients. Even though their rates are higher than Pakistani networks you still end up paying less without all those taxes, tricks etc

  • alam

    overseas pakistanis should start satrt using skype immediatly in order to boycott pakistan gov

  • Saleem KHAN

    Its merit to mention that future of SKYPE is also in firing zone. Vibre is growing very fast and easy to install on iOS and Andorid. You don’t need to add people and neither need to keep it active for receiving calls. I searches itself contacts in your phone having VIBRE installed plus it stays silent in background and as calls comes, it activates and rings as GMS calls. Kindly study and you will find that VIBRE is big threat for SKYPE these days.

    • Telco Khan

      Viber does not support video calling from phones, it only supports PC to PC video calling.