Before going into the details of this tutorial and discovering, together, like having a Skype number, it seems only right to clarify how this service offered by Microsoft works and what its main characteristics are.
Skype's numbering service allows you to bind up to 10 numbers to each account. These numbers may come from different countries (of the European Union or the rest of the world) and have a duration of 1, 3 or 12 months, depending on the subscription you decide to subscribe to. Prices may vary depending on the country of origin of the chosen number, but on average they are about 6,95 euro / month, 19,83 euros / 3 months e 55,91 euro / year.
The accepted payment methods are many: Skype credit, credit cards (including Prepaid cards), PayPal, Skrill (Moneybookers), Bank transfer and more. Subscriptions to Skype Numbers are automatically renewed at the end of the subscription period (3 days in advance, so as not to lose the number in case of problems), but can be canceled at any time.
It should also be noted that to request the numbers of some countries, one is required proof of residence, so you have to prove that you live on the spot. The countries that require proof of residence (at the time of writing) are the following: Brazil, France, Holland, Switzerland and South Korea.
As easily imaginable, it is not possible to use an existing number (eg your home number) as a Skype number. Another thing quite clear is that, to take advantage of Skype numbers, you need to have a Skype account, and therefore an active Microsoft account. If you do not have a Microsoft account yet (which is quite unlikely since you already use Skype!), Create it immediately following the instructions in my tutorial dedicated to the subject.
Finally, a mention of the costs for those who are "on the other side": for the caller, the costs to be incurred are those of normal calls to the countries to which the numbers associated with Skype refer.
Activate a Skype Number
Now that you understand all the features of Skype's numbering service, it's time to take action and request a number. Therefore, open the browser you usually use to surf the Internet on your computer or portable devices (the procedure can be performed without any difference from PC, smartphone and tablet), connected to the secure.skype.com/my/skype page -number, click on the button Others and select the country of reference of the number you want to associate with your Skype account (for my example I will choose theIreland).
On the page that opens, if requested, log in to yours Microsoft account by first entering the email address and then the access password for the latter. Once this is done, if the selected country allows it, use the drop-down menu Choose area to select the area to which the number to be associated with Skype (and therefore its area code) must belong.
Pigia, quindi, sul pulsating Continue and you will be shown a number among those available for the selected area: if it suits you, click on the button Continue, otherwise click on the entry Show other local numbers for [chosen location] at the bottom and select a number you like.
Finally, choose whether to activate a type subscription monthly, quarterly o annual, placing the check mark next to the relevant item, and press the button Continue to make the payment.
If you already have a valid payment method associated with your Microsoft account, you can select that and click the button Pay now to complete the transaction, otherwise you will need to set a new payment method and then confirm the payment. The number should be activated instantly.
As mentioned above, you can bind up to 10 numbers to each Skype account: this means that you can repeat the procedure 9 more times and have another 9 numbers, even from different countries, associated with your account.
From the moment of activation, when a call is made to your number (or numbers), you will hear Skype ringing on your computer and / or your mobile devices and you can answer from there, just as if it were a VoIP call between accounts Skype.
In case of second thoughts, you can deactivate the subscription to the Skype number by connecting to the management page of your account, selecting your Skype number from the section Manage features and finally going to the menu Settings. More info here.
Alternatives to Skype for having a VoIP number
How do you say? Is the impossibility of having an cittàn Skype number too big a limit for you, preventing you from taking advantage of this feature? Don't worry, there are others alternative VoIP services that allow you to have cittàn numbers at affordable prices. Now I'll point out some of the most interesting.
- Messagenet - through the FreeNumber service, the Messagenet site (which I also told you about in my tutorial on how to receive a fax via email) allows you to activate an cittàn number at no cost, without fixed fees and with the possibility of calling other users for free by Messagenet. Calls to real phone numbers, on the other hand, are paid according to the rates provided by the service. Once activated, the Messagenet number can be used with the VoiP XLite and SJPhone software for Windows and macOS and with the Mtalk app for Android and iOS. It should be noted that FreeNumber must be used at least once a month to make paid calls or to receive phone calls, otherwise Messagenet reserves the right to deactivate the number. To activate the service, connect to Messagenet using the link I just provided, select a prefix from the drop-down menu on the right and click on the “Activate now” button, and then fill in the registration form that is proposed to you.
- Cloudin your languagea Orchestra - the Cloudin your languagea Orchestra VoIP service allows you to call all users of the platform free of charge, receive calls and make phone calls to fixed and mobile numbers around the world at fairly advantageous prices (using a client for computers or apps for smartphones and tablets). There are no fixed monthly fees or connection fees. To activate your number, connected to the page I linked to you, click on the "Continue" button and fill out the registration form. You will then receive, in the email box indicated during registration, the instructions to validate your identity by uploading an identity document and to choose your geographical number from those available.
- OpenVOIP - this service offers a VoIP line with a geographic number of the national fixed network to make and receive calls at fairly affordable rates. It involves the signing of a flexible contract, the closure of which is free of costs and is available at any time. The cost of the service, on the other hand, is 2 euros / month per number, charged to the prepaid credit of your account. To request a quote, connect to OpenVOIP using the link I provided, select the item "VoIP Telephony" from the left sidebar, click on the button "Make an online quote and choose whether to activate the contract!" and fill out the form that is proposed to you by choosing the number to be activated and providing the rest of the information requested.
Please note: if you are trying to activate a VoIP number because you want to make free calls from a computer, smartphone and / or tablet, know that you do not need to request a real number. All you need is a good application to make calls and video calls over the Internet: I told you about it in my tutorials on how to call for free from your PC and on apps to call for free.
How to get a Skype number