Microsoft and MCI are going to launch a VoIP service that allows users to call any telephone from their PC. This service will be called MCI Web Calling for Windows Live Call and it will be part of Windows Live Messenger, the next version of MSN Messenger.
Like eBay’s SkypeOut service, Microsoft and MCI are selling the PC-to-phone VoIP service. Customers will be able to buy prepaid calling cards in $5, $10, and $15 blocks for use with the service. The service will allow a user to call both landline and mobile phones just by clicking on an entry in the user’s contact list.
Users will be able to place calls at rates starting at $0.023 per minute to the U.S., the U.K., Canada, and Western Europe during the beta test period. Eventually they will be able to call more than 220 countries.
When signing up during the beta period users will get up to an hour of free calls and the final pricing will be determined when the service officially launches in 2006. More details over here.