Skype blocks Fring access, threatens legal action

After a victory for iPhone users was won by Fring last week, the social communications company is now facing the backout of their most valued collaborator, according to TechCrunch. Fring, a communications platform that enables VoIP (Voice over IP) phone calling to both Fring and Skype contacts, enabled video chat on its iPhone app last Thursday. Until that point, iPhone 4 users wanting to take advantage of the video chat functionality made possible by the device's front-facing camera had to use Facetime, which was only available on WiFi networks. Fring enabled video chat over 3G networks, and iPhone users were ecstatic.

However, after an understandably, yet unexpectedly, large spike in video traffic immediately after the update's release, Fring was forced to temporarily reduce support of Skype compatibility until the congestion problem could be solved. Apparently, Skype wasn't happy with the move. They have blocked all Fring access to their communications platform and have threatened legal action.

Fring, in a press release, says that they are being forced to stop offering Skype compatibility, a service they have dutifully offered for four years. They didn't have nice words for Skype in their blog.

“They are afraid of open mobile communication. Cowards.

Needless to say, we are very disappointed that Skype, who once championed the cause of openness is now trying to muzzle competition, even at the expense of its own users.

We're sorry for the inconvenience Skype has caused you.”

Skype has yet to issue an official response. 

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