Skype releases 3.0 of their iPhone app, finally adds video chat (Updated)

by Justin Horn on Dec 30th, 2010 @ 1:56 am

161 days since the last big Skype update, which added background calling, they’ve now  finally added support for video chat. So long run finally comes to an end!

Here’s what’s new in version 3.0:

• Make Skype to Skype video calls on WiFi and 3G*
• Call Skype desktop users (Mac OS X or Windows) and other iPhone users.
• Two-way video calls supported on iPhone 4, iPhone 3GS and iPod touch 4th gen.
• Receive only video supported on iPad and iPod touch 3rd gen, with no camera.
• Make video calls in portrait and landscape.
• Skype video calling requires iOS 4.0 or above.
*Additional Data charges may apply

UPDATE Skype published a blog post on the release, with video demonstrating the app.

iTunes Link

(via TiPb)

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iPhone apps, Skype

Skype 5 beta for Mac now available and $1500 contest

by Justin Horn on Nov 4th, 2010 @ 10:20 am

Skype just released the overdue update for Mac. It now brings it more inline with the latest Windows version, including group video chat. Here are the key features from the Skype blog:

  • New call control bar — Hang up, mute and more from a mini Skype toolbar that sits on top of any web pages, documents or photos you’ve got open
  • Search chat content to easily navigate past conversations
  • Offline IM so that you can send and receive instant messages even if the recipient is offline
  • Personalise contacts via user profiles
  • Quickly rejoin calls if your Internet connection fails momentarily
  • Floating Contacts Monitor to see your online contacts and contact groups

Also, Skype is doing a $1500 Apple Store gift card Twitter contest:

Win a $1,500 USD Apple Store gift certificate! Tweet your favorite feature of the new Skype for Mac 5.0 Beta

Go download it now!

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Macs, Skype

New page in honor of the delay in Skype video chat for iPhone 4

by Justin Horn on Oct 15th, 2010 @ 1:05 pm

I actually created this page shortly after the iOS 4 multitasking Skype app was released, but never got around to publicizing it.  Before the iOS 4 release, we jumped all over the delay with and 30 days later it was released.

It’s now been almost 3 months since they released the iOS 4 update and there is still no video chat, so I figured it’s time to promote this page more and see if luck can strike twice!

Here’s the link:

Tell your friends!

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iPhone, iPhone apps, iPod, Skype

Verizon Skype app does not use 3G data or WI-FI for voice calls

by Justin Horn on Sep 2nd, 2010 @ 2:25 pm

Skype announced today that you can now use the Verizon Skype app on your Andriod phone without disabling WI-FI. AndroidCentral jumped on the news assuming that you could now make calls using WI-FI. They later updated this, stating that you could now leave WI-FI enabled while using Skype, but not actually place calls via WI-FI.

It was obvious to me that there is no way they would allow WI-FI calling. Remember, Skype doesn’t just have an app out on the Andriod market like it is on Apple’s app store. The app is only available to Andriod phones (and BlackBerry) that are on the Verizon network. This is all part of a very shady deal between Skype and Verizon, which I  highlighted back in March. It’s basically an exclusivity deal that would tempt Skype users to pick Verizon over a different carrier. Even better for Verizon, your Skype calls to domestic phones use up your regular Verizon voice plan minutes. Skype to Skype calls are free and international calls are billed by Skype, but I still beleive they connect through Verizon’s regular voice network. I’m really not sure what’s in it for Skype.

What AndriodCenteral and others missed, is the fact that Skype calls don’t even use your 3G data connection. Brian Klug brought this to my attention in a tweet about a month ago:

@justin_horn @gruber even worse, the skype app on android doesn’t even do real VoIP – it places calls. Doesn’t use data.

This explains why Skype-to-phone calls come out of your Verizon minutes, but then what’s the point of using Skype at all? Your Skype address book?

I confrimed Brian’s hunch today with Skype’s main PR guy, Peter Parkes, on Twitter:

Me: @PeteratSkype Does Skype Verizon on Andriod work on 3G data, or just call into VZ mothership via normal CDMA phone connection and then out? (Original Tweet)

Peter: @justin_horn it uses the data connection for IM, contact list, etc and the voice network for calls – hope that helps (Original Tweet)

So if Skype were to allow WI-FI calling with this update, they would obviously be in breach of their contract with Verizon.

Compare this to un-open iOS Skype app which allows you to make calls on 3G and WI-FI. These calls are placed just like they would be from a laptop with a 3G card or WI-FI connection. All usage is billed to your Skype account alone. You can even make WI-FI calls from the iPod touch.

(via Daring Fireball)

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Andriod, Skype, Verizon

Skype app updated to include iPod multitasking

by Justin Horn on Aug 16th, 2010 @ 3:56 pm

Skype finally released their 2.1 update, with multitasking, after only a month of coming soon (short for them) on July 21st. There was one oddity that I missed in this update, but Seth Weintraub of 9to5Mac pointed out in this follow up tweet to me:

What’s New In This Version: “… Multitasking is available only with iPhone 4 and iPhone 3GS.”

That’s right, Skype thought it would be a good idea to not allow the 3rd gen iPod, which can run the new iOS 4 without issue, to run in the background.

Skype has seen the error of their ways with update 2.1.1:

- You can now disable IM alerts.
- The dialpad is now more responsive.
- The behavior of the volume, when Skype interacts with other Apps, is now much better.
- When your status is set to Do Not Disturb, notifications are not shown when Skype is in the background.

Multitasking is available only with iPhone 4, iPhone 3GS and iPod 3rd Generation running iOS 4.

Thanks Skype, now how about some video calls?

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iOS 4, iPhone, iPhone apps, iPod, Skype, Tips