Windows Phone 7 might get VoIP as part of "Facetime" competitor

Yesterday, we revealed that Microsoft is working on a competitor to the Apple iPhone's "Facetime" product, a feature of the platform that allows the user to make video phone calls to other users of the iPhone. 

Neowin can now reveal that as part of this new feature, Microsoft seems to be using Voice over IP technologies (VoIP), and the functionality is already built into the platform, further supporting the claims that the company is working on such a features.

Pictures obtained by Neowin show registry keys hidden inside Windows Phone 7's registry that describe the features;

 

The registry keys "VoIP" and "SIP" are hidden inside the "ControlPanel" portion of the registry, and both seem to be set to be off (by having "0" under their "Enabled" value). It's worth noting that for some reason, these keys are in a portion of the registry that contains other features that are fundamental to the platform, such as theme colors. Right now, we don't have write access to the registry to attempt to turn it on, but hopefully in the near future the homebrew community may allow us to do this.

The VoIP feature has not been revealed before, and it is not certain whether or not this will be used for the "Facetime" like feature, or if it would be available for actual VoIP calling to other Windows Phone 7 users.

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32 Comments

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I don't think finding this in the registry Indicates anything. This just means that wp7 supports a front facing camera. Imagine an OEM made a phone with a ff camera and wp7 didn't support it? This isn't a clue to the future as much as an indication that wp7 is prepared.

WP7 has a registry? I thought MS wanted to remove the registry from Windows with WinFS and that did not eventuate. Why would MS implement a registry in a new platform like WP7 then? Just wondering, this looks like the right place to ask.

derekaw said,
WP7 has a registry? I thought MS wanted to remove the registry from Windows with WinFS and that did not eventuate. Why would MS implement a registry in a new platform like WP7 then? Just wondering, this looks like the right place to ask.

Windows Phone 7 is built upon Windows CE / Embedded Compact, it's based on an entirely new kernel And the registry is part of WinCE.

~Johnny said,

Windows Phone 7 is built upon Windows CE / Embedded Compact, it's based on an entirely new kernel And the registry is part of WinCE.

What new kernel? CE 6.XX is not a new kernel; even CE7 is not a completely new kernel.....

derekaw said,
WP7 has a registry? I thought MS wanted to remove the registry from Windows with WinFS and that did not eventuate. Why would MS implement a registry in a new platform like WP7 then? Just wondering, this looks like the right place to ask.
Correction, the users wanted MS to get rid of the registry (and have been bitching and moaning about it for years). MS has no intention of removing it, why replace something that isn't broken? I mean just because the users say it's rubbish doesn't mean it actually is. Secondly WinFS had nothing todo with the registry, it was another layer to be added over NTFS to help better manage your data I believe. It never saw the light of day but the underlying tech still exists in MS's latest SQL Server products. That is my 2 cents, take with a grain of salt.

Let me get this right. They are implementing something to compete with facetime, and you can REVEAL that they're using something based on VoIP? Something similar to facetime which is basically VOICE and video over the INTERNET?

YOU DON'T SAY!!!!!!!!

actually no phone 7 smartphones hava a front camere to run any video voip app (tango, fring, skype or facetime windows version)

neorik said,
actually no phone 7 smartphones hava a front camere to run any video voip app (tango, fring, skype or facetime windows version)
Neither did the iPhone until the feature was introduced.

Ugh. Apple actually made FaceTime an open protocol, based pretty much all on existing standards, in the hopes that other providers would implement it (which hasn't happened yet as far as I know). I remember this being mentioned during whatever Steve Jobs speech where it was announced. Why would MS develop their own and not just implement FaceTime? As much as they might not want to follow suit with Apple, it would actually allow iPhone and Windows Phone users to call each other!

Aaron44126 said,
Ugh. Apple actually made FaceTime an open protocol, based pretty much all on existing standards, in the hopes that other providers would implement it (which hasn't happened yet as far as I know). I remember this being mentioned during whatever Steve Jobs speech where it was announced. Why would MS develop their own and not just implement FaceTime? As much as they might not want to follow suit with Apple, it would actually allow iPhone and Windows Phone users to call each other!

wish they'd make them all interpoerable..... thats why we have the H.323 and H.234 standards

Aaron44126 said,
Ugh. Apple actually made FaceTime an open protocol, based pretty much all on existing standards, in the hopes that other providers would implement it (which hasn't happened yet as far as I know). I remember this being mentioned during whatever Steve Jobs speech where it was announced. Why would MS develop their own and not just implement FaceTime? As much as they might not want to follow suit with Apple, it would actually allow iPhone and Windows Phone users to call each other!

Microsoft are cut from the same cloth as Apple in a lot of ways, curiously not in this one though. It is in Microsoft's business interests not to use an industry open standard, proprietary lockins force other people to buy their devices if they want to utilise that particular feature. For once I will be saying I prefer the strategy Apple has on this. Facetime is IMO a gimmick, but the fact that they are making it an open protocol is good for the industry.

Aaron44126 said,
Ugh. Apple actually made FaceTime an open protocol, based pretty much all on existing standards, in the hopes that other providers would implement it (which hasn't happened yet as far as I know). I remember this being mentioned during whatever Steve Jobs speech where it was announced. Why would MS develop their own and not just implement FaceTime? As much as they might not want to follow suit with Apple, it would actually allow iPhone and Windows Phone users to call each other!
FaceTime still relies on Apple servers and proprietary encrypted protocols to connect FaceTime users.
http://blog.roychowdhury.org/2...a-unencrypted-stun-and-sip/

Um facetime IS NOT OPEN yet. It is still a proprietary license.

Not to mention, Apple could have licensed an existing solution when they made facetime...but they didn't. They chose to make their own format, but yet you want the rest of the world to follow apples standard...when they can't even do the same

GP007 said,
It's never been a question of if WP7 will get this or that but just when.

Man I wish I could post this answer for every single complaint about WPH7, because that is exactly the deal.

Emperatoor said,
Voip is better than facetime because it is more popular and all devices can use it like PCs and ...

To say that it is 'better' is arguable, but the fact that it can be used with any device is a great selling point. Microsoft has a tendency of either making services really bad (Vista ) or really good (Win 7, WP7), hopefully this is one of the good ones.

greenwizard88 said,
In a world where voice communications are increasingly irrelevant, and everything is communicated via text... free voice!

I disagree.
While text communication has its place, so does voice. Being able to talk to my girlfriend and hear her voice is so much nicer than a text conversation.

WelshBluebird said,

I disagree.
While text communication has its place, so does voice. Being able to talk to my girlfriend and hear her voice is so much nicer than a text conversation.


Oh I quite agree, I just find where I used to go over my minutes constantly, and it was just my mom, dad, and I, now my mom, dad, sister, and I have minutes to spare.