Apple iPad users eagerly awaiting the arrival of Skype's new app got a short-lived trick played on them Monday: Now you see it, now you don't.
The anticipated new iPad app from Skype launched Monday, but then it was pulled down from Apple's App Store. Skype says the arrival was a bit ahead of schedule.
"To ensure your best Skype experience, we've temporarily removed Skype for iPad which went live prematurely today," Skype Tweeted. "We know you've been eagerly awaiting Skype for iPad and apologize for the inconvenience."
Skype did not provide additional details.
Some iPad users waiting on Skype's new app were dismayed.
"UGHHHHHHHH I HATE YOU FOR PULLING THE APP," complained one person on Twitter.
Reports suggested Skype's new iPad app would go live last month, and it's still not clear when it will be released beyond the brief appearance.
Microsoft said in May that company was acquiring Skype in an $8.5 billion deal. Microsoft said it would support Skype on rival platforms, including Apple. Skype app versions are already available for Apple's iPhone and Mac computers.
Last month Skype's vice president of consumer and product design, Rick Osterloh, said the iPad version will have chat, audio and video calling. He did not release a timetable for the video conferencing app made especially for the iPad 2, but he said Skype expects Apple to approve the app very soon.
On Monday, Skype's iPad app appeared briefly in Apple's online store, before it was pulled.
Skype launched an application for the iPhone in 2009. The iPhone 4 contains the popular FaceTime feature, however, which allows users to video chat with one another on a phone call when wireless Internet is available.
The iPad 2 released earlier this year includes dual-facing cameras which makes video chatting on the product a natural, so Skype has been hard at work to get its iPad app ready and through Apple's approval process.
PC Mag noted that the iPad version of Skype should be similar to the iPhone app in terms of functionality.
Users should not expect to have the full functionality with Skype's iPad app that they get from using the base program on a PC or a MAC computer, however. File sharing won't be possible, for example. Still, Osterloh told TUAW that Apple has been "super supportive" of Skype's iPad app.
The program will be free for users, including dial-up, video and audio as long as they aren't conducting conference calls - just like Skype's PC and Mac version. Users will simply have to pay data usage fees for connection to their 3G service unless wifi is available. Skype's iPad app will be able to call Android smartphones and other operating systems compatible with Skype.