Skype available via TV sets from this Spring
Consumer VoIP company Skype has announced that it is to collaborate with LG Electronics and Panasonic to bring their popular messaging software to internet enabled high definition TVs – allowing consumers to make and receive calls via their living room television sets.
Panasonic has already partnered with a number of providers to deliver content to the company’s line of internet enabled sets – Viera Cast which are due to launch this Spring. However, the Skype service will also be available on 26 new LG HDTVs planned for launch also this Spring.
The TVs will deliver familiar Skype services such as free Skype-to-Skype voice and video calls; telephone calls to landline or mobile phones; the option to receive inbound calls via a user’s online Skype number; voicemail; and video conferencing facilities.
“Embedding the Skype software in our broadband HDTVs enriches the user experience, allowing consumers to connect with family and friends from the comfort of their family room without a PC,” said Peter Reiner, senior vice president, marketing, LG Electronics USA.
“The addition of Skype to our VIERA CAST offerings truly takes HDTV connectivity to a whole new level,” said Bob Perry, vice president, Panasonic Consumer Electronics Company.
With both manufacturers’ systems, consumers will have to purchase a separate camera with an integrated microphone.
“We know that Skype users are increasingly interested in conducting video calls away from their computers. With Skype, consumers of LG’s NetCast HDTVs will now be able to participate in rich, real-time video conversations from the comfort of their couch,” said Josh Silverman, CEO of Skype.