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Summary:

[qi:090] Remember how we complained about Google-owned GrandCentral doing a switcheroo on their promise of one number for life? Well, Skype is doing the same to some Londoners who have SkypeIn mumbers. The company sent an email to some of the “0207” number owners with this […]

[qi:090] Remember how we complained about Google-owned GrandCentral doing a switcheroo on their promise of one number for life? Well, Skype is doing the same to some Londoners who have SkypeIn mumbers. The company sent an email to some of the “0207” number owners with this explanation…

We’re very sorry to tell you that we have to change your SkypeIn number. As some of you may know, we get SkypeIn numbers from a variety of telecoms suppliers. Unfortunately, we have to return some of the 0207 SkypeIn numbers to one of our suppliers of London numbers.

The numbers stop working on Dec. 20th. The company says it will give you a new SkypeIn number and voicemail for free for 12 months. Many of these numbers could be in the 0208 numbers and 0203 area codes, Skype says. That said, it is pretty lame for the company to pull a stunt like this, especially a company as big as Skype. Their excuse is pretty weak.

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  1. From reading the Skype forums it appears that Skype is no longer dealing with a big reseller of 0207 numbers therefore your number just goes up in smoke if you happen to be one of the unlucky ones (and there are a lot by all accounts).

    The two biggest problems here are 1) 0207 numbers are no longer available, these 0207 number relate to central London, 0208 are the suburbs and 0203, well who knows! and 2) They’ve given long time users like myself LESS than ONE MONTHS NOTICE.

    Really incredible.

  2. I have had my skypeIn 0207 number for 2 years and had just renewed it for another year. I use it as my main contact number in my advertising which I will still be paying for long after the number stops working….
    This is really poor, really poor….

  3. I have had my 0207 skypeIn number for more thann 2 years and had just renewed it for another year. I use it as my main contact number in my advertising which I will still be paying for long after the number stops working….
    This is really poor, really very poor….
    I am disgusted by this action and the short notice that Skype is giving, I had only just renewed it.
    What a load of bollox from a company worth millions!

  4. I have had my number for a similar length of time.

    For such a large corporation, I find it incredible that SKYPE can treat small businesses so badly. It is going to cost me a lot of money to change all my printed material. I do not think I can rely on their services again. If skype are unwilling to assist me in my costs then I will be recommending to all I know to cease the use of this service.

    Poor is not the word – it is unprofessional, and unsatisfactory! I hope my customer never have to experience the same poor service I am getting from SKYPE!

  5. This is unbelievable! Like most people I have had my 0207 number printed on all my stationary and adverts and now my customers won’t be able to contact me in a months time. I have just spent a fortune on advertising as Christmas is the busiest time of the year. I am not impressed at all! I will now warn everyone to keep well away from Skype!

  6. Saga #xx. Ranks up there with changing my password wo my consent and my having to set up a new account. Further frustration when there is nobody like a customer service dept to talk to.

    WARNING: Skype is a toy, NOT A BUSINESS SOLUTION.

  7. The incompetence of this move is just gobsmacking. I read it at first assuming that it was a year away, not just a few weeks. If they do not reverse the decision I have every intention of ensuring that my number appears as prominently as possible on every scam, spam and sex line listing I can find.

  8. For the amount of bad publicity Skype will get from this I’m surprised they can’t throw a chunk of money at it to sort it out…

    As far as saying Skype is a toy – they market themselves as a viable telecomunications solution. If they want to play with the big boys they can’t be relying on flakey suppliers that are suddenly going to pull the plug.

    I too have lost my 0207 number which I’ve had for over a year and have been using as my main business telephone number.

    In the email they sent, it said:

    “We’re very sorry to tell you that we have to change your SkypeIn
    number. As some of you may know, we get SkypeIn numbers from a variety of telecoms suppliers. Unfortunately, we have to return some of the 0207 SkypeIn numbers to one of our suppliers of London numbers.”

    Not sure how many people knew that their phone number was only being leased and could be retracted at any time – that could have affected my decision to go with them in the first place (a reason why it was probably mentioned in very small print somewhere.

  9. Wow – I’d expect GM to present what’s actually happening instead of a chicken little viewpoint.

    The supplier in this case is OFCOM – i.e. the Government. It’s common in the US to change Area codes for a region when the population growth out grows the amount of numbers available. businesses that want permanent numbers purchase them (normally these are 1-800 toll free numbers in the US, but they don’t have to be). Otherwise your number is subject to change.

    In looking at OFCOM documents, it seems in 2004 they wanted to move all VOIP services to their own area codes – which Skype and others opposed, claiming users wanted “localized” numbers – which I agree. I did get the sense though that OFCOM looked at VOIP as “second class” to traditional lines, so it doesn’t surprise me that they pick Skype to take back numbers from when rezoning.

    To those that “invested huge amount of money” in a SkypeIn number, should have invested some time in reading the ToS or in a lawyer to review it for them.

    “You acknowledge and understand that the allocation and distribution of the number does not constitute any transfer of any property or other rights with respect to the numbers.” … “In the event that Skype changes the SkypeIn number that has been allocated to you, Skype will send a notification by e-mail, stating the effective date of the change and your new number. If you do not wish to accept this new number, you are entitled to terminate your number, in writing or by e-mail to billing@skype.net, with effect from the date on which the new number will be allocated to you. Skype will not be liable for any damages resulting from the change of number.”

  10. I’d be just as mad if I was in the position of having a number I used for marketing go bad, but is there a chance that it isn’t Skype’s fault?

    Here is a hack I use for my phone numbers. I don’t know if it would work in the UK, but in the USA it is golden. I have a too free number. It’s really cheap, $1.00 a month and $.05 a minute incoming, and it is independent of my real number. I can move, change cities, change states, and I keep my toll free and just have it wring to my new number. I haven’t had to change it once, and I’ve moved 7 times.

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