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Skype to bring free group calling to iPhones, iPads, other mobile devices

Skype users will soon be able to make free group video calls from mobile devices like iPhones, iPods, and iPads, just as they can on Macs, PCs, and Xboxes, the Microsoft-owned company announced on Tuesday.

People will also be able to make free group calls from Android and Windows 10 phones. The expanded support should officially roll out over "coming weeks," Skype said, but people wanting early preview access can register through the company's website.

There users must enter their country, email address, Skype username, and device type. The company is promising to setup preview participants within a matter of days.

The change may help give Skype an edge over FaceTime, which while built into iOS only supports two-way video calls. FaceTime is also restricted to iOS users.

When it was originally introduced in 2010, Apple promised that FaceTime would be made an open protocol, paving the way for third-party support and adoption as a common standard. So far, though, there has been no sign of that happening.