Skype announced today a new all-you-can-eat SkypeOut plan for U.S. and Canadian customers. For $29.95 per year, you can make unlimited SkypeOut calls to mobile phones and landlines within the U.S. and Canada. Even better, if you sign up for the plan before Jan. 31, 2007, you get a 50 percent discount so you only pay $14.95 for a year of unlimited SkypeOut calls, plus 100 minutes of SkypeOut credit for international calls. If you're like me and don't make even $14.95 worth of SkypeOut calls each year, you can still opt to pay Skype's per-minute rate to call non-Skype users (around 2.1 cents per minute for calls within the U.S. and Canada).
This news follows Skype's May 2006 announcement of unlimited SkypeOut calls for the remainder of 2006. This free plan seemed too good to last--and it was. The free calls were a push to drum up new Skype users and familiarize them with the SkypeOut premise, and according to the company, it worked. And while I like free better than $14.95, I suppose the company needs to make money. Why isn't it all about me?? Oh well.