Yahoo to bring video chat to the iPhone

Katie Gatto · October 11, 2010 · Short URL:

A large wireless based video chat could represent serious issues for AT&T's bandwidth

(Correction: Fring services)

Apple already has FaceTime, a mobile video chat application, available on the iTunes app store. But that won't stop other developers from trying to squeeze their way into the mobile video-chat market by leveraging the Apple platform. Soon, Yahoo will be tossing its hat into the ring, by releasing a mobile version of Yahoo Messenger that includes video chat. 

No specific release date has been stated for the application, which has yet to be approved by Apple. But we know a few things, about how these chats will differ from FaceTime. First of all, it will be available for both iPhones and Android-based phones. We also know, that it will already be available on new 4G myTouch smartphone, which is being put out by T-mobile.

The app is going to be free. This is good, since it is unlikely that users would pay for a service that they already have for free, on their PC. It also has one big potential advantage over FaceTime. It will allow for chats with Yahoo Messenger users who are on their PCs, which potentially opens it up to a much larger market.

Another feature, which could be a a mixed blessing, is the ability to video chat not only over your WiFi connection, but over the connection from your wireless network. You may wonder, why this is a mixed blessing?

While it may give you the ability to chat in a wider array of areas, there is a chance that, if used en mass, it could represent a serious issue for the already overtaxed AT&T network. A network, which it is worth mentioning, now has its own app to report service outages, after major bandwidth issues in 2009. Those bandwidth issues, could result in interruptions in service, lag in the video chats or other, as yet unforeseen, issues with the service.

Yahoo Messenger will not be the only application, that adds video chat over the wireless networks. Two existing applications, Fring and Tango, also allow this feature. Neither however, is as large as Yahoo Messenger.

Yahoo and Apple were not available for immediate comment.

(Image from Esoft)

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