Skype Journal’s Jim Courtney has presented some interesting information from eBay’s recent Q3 report. The report unveils some interesting information about the growth rate of Skype, both internationally and domestically, in addition to revenue figures generated by Skype. In this past quarter, Skype saw it is biggest growth in US subscribes this year, with a 37% percent increase. This is up 8% from last quarter. Skype’s US growth even outpaced its international growth by approximately 17% last quarter.
While all of this seems promising, revenues did drop (due to lack of revenues from SkypeOut in the US as Jim noted) and Skype is still not living up to their big price tag. Obviously, Skype is hoping that it’s free calling promotion for US users will hook enough users on the value of Skype that when calls are no longer free, they will pay for Skype calls and revenues will not only increase, but do so substantially.
Jim believes there are additional revenues for Skype in royalties from Skype products and through the Skype SMS service. While I agree with him that those opportunities are present, unless hardware manufacturers start creating Skype products that people will actually use, or an increase in teenage “Skypers” I do not think these avenues will be able to generate the sort of revenues Skype is looking for.
A better route, from my personal experience with Skype, would be to begin to educate businesses and business users on the value and benefit of using Skype as their communications tool of choice. The business user and small-medium business are in my opinion the ideal Skype user, yet Skype has done little to attract these folks to Skype. If they truly want to drive serious revenues the business user is where they should be focusing their time.