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Skype and Facebook make nice; Nimbuzz, others kicked to the curb

Skype (www.skype.com) has integrated the Facebook (www.facebook.com) news feed and phone book into its Windows implementation.  At the same time, the company is dumping Nimbuzz and others in a move to a tighter walled garden strategy – or it just couldn’t get any cash out of the freeness.

Within the new Skype client, users can get their Facebook News Feed, including status updates, commenting, and linking, plus making calls within Facebook either in a free Skype-to-Skype call or a Skype-Out fashion. 

I think Skype and Facebook deserve each other – as in a merger.  Facebook would get a “clean” communications channel capable of supporting both voice and video while Skype would get an application to drive minutes and usage. You’d get synergistic stickiness that could translate into more money.  Of course, Skype is currently looking at the enterprise for more revenue, so that could work well for Facebook as well.

Meanwhile, Nimbuzz and Fring have been booted from interoperating with Skype. Nimbuzz says this is part of a move to kick all third-party VoIP connections before an IPO, while Skype says this is simply a move to better manage its mobile client interactions – which is an interesting statement, given the many different mobile client relationships it has with with carriers.

Since Nimbuzz says it clocked 3.65 billion voice minutes in the past year, I suspect cash has something to do with it. Every billable minute across Nimbuzz is one less that Skype gets.

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