Fury as Skype strips customers of London numbers

Internet telephony company, Skype, has angered its customers by withdrawing their telephone numbers.

Fury as Skype strips customers of London numbers

The company’s SkypeIn service gives customers a regular landline number that friends and business contacts can call from any ordinary telephone. However, Skype has sent out a message to hundreds of owners of 0207 numbers, informing them that their numbers are to be changed, with only a month’s notice.

“We’re very sorry to tell you that we have to change your SkypeIn number,” the message from the company reads. “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 move has enraged Skype customers, who use their SkypeIn number for business purposes. “I have [had] it for two years now and its my main business number, in all my literature, printed ads etc,” claims one customer on the Skype forums. “To be honest, it never dawned on me that we would be told you can’t have that number any more.”

Some customers claim this latest incident could lead them to desert the service.

“Like others, I have printed marketing material with this number, which I guess I’m now going to have to sticker over,” complains another Skype user. “This problem combined with the way Skype handled the outage earlier this year, means I really have to rethink if Skype is the way forward.”

In a a statement, Skype has apologised to its customers: “We are very sorry to confirm that we are asking a number of our SkypeIn users to change their London-based SkypeIn number.

“Obviously we know this causes our users a lot of inconvenience. To make up for this, we have given all of the users who need to return their number, a brand new SkypeIn number which will be free for 12 months along with free voicemail.”

The olive branch hasn’t gone down well with many of the Skype forum customers, some of whom are claiming they’ve returned their free voucher.

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