Posted in March 2010

SkypeIn – Another service not available in Canada


I’ve once again been bitten by the lack of availability of a service in Canada.  I’ll be moving into a new apartment this April, and my new roommate and I were faced with the challenge of deciding what to do with the buzzer box for the apartment building.  We could choose one of our phones to forward it to, but this wouldn’t be ideal for obvious reasons.  I remembered looking at a problem like this when I was down in the US, and discovering that Skype had some features that might provide a good solution.  I started looking into it again, and sure enough with Skype you can set-up call forwarding to multiple numbers so that all the numbers will ring when a new call comes in, and then you can setup an online number, also known as “SkypeIn” to provide a local phone number that people can call, which will then get forwarded.  I started setting up and configuring a Skype account for this purpose, only to discover that online numbers aren’t available in Canada!  Reading in their forums this has been an issue for years, which is as yet unresolved between Skype and the CRTC.  

This is incredibly frustrating as its another example of a great service which is available in the US, but is somehow being blocked by the legislation in Canada, despite our supposed “Free Trade” agreements.  I’m going to look around and see if I can find a comparable service in Canada and will make a new post if I find someway to set this up here for a reasonable cost.  (If anyone has any suggestions please leave them in the comments!)

UPDATE: As pointed out in the comments there is a service which offers a skype-in number in Canada;  I have not used this myself so I’d be interested in hearing on people’s luck using this service.