Worried about using Skype in Dubai? Here are two approved alternatives…

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The internet calling services C’Me and BOTIM are TRA approved, but will cost from Dhs50 per month (excluding VAT)…

Over the festive period, many Dubai residents faced disruption to their Skype usage, meaning they were unable to contact friends and family around the world.

At the time, consumers were reminded by network providers Du and Etisalat that Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) services including Skype, Facetime, What’sApp call and Viber are blocked under the regulation of the Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (TRA).

Both du and Etisalat are offering approved alternatives, but they come at a price.

Etisalat has recently released a statement offering an add-on to Etisalat subscribers (prepaid, postpaid and e-Life home broadband), which offers unlimited app-to-app voice and video calling. It’s available on two VoIP applications, C’Me and BOTIM, both of which are TRA approved.

For those adding to their mobile plan, the package comes at Dhs50 per month (excluding VAT), while for those adding to their eLife plan, it’s Dhs100 (excluding VAT), allowing all devices belonging to the eLife account unlimited access to the VoIP service.

But so long as Etisalat customers have an active internet connection to use with the service, there will be no extra charges incurred. Users’ friends and family just need to make sure that they’ve also downloaded the app so can receive the calls.

A check to the du website indicates that the same services are available on their network for the same price.

Currently, C’ME and BOTIM meet the UAE regulatory framework requirements to offer VoIP calling in the UAE. New VoIP apps may added to the list of supported apps once they meet the UAE regulatory framework requirements.

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