Facebook is quickly becoming a way for established software publishers and services to gain new market share. Today Skype (for Windows and Mac) slipped an app launcher for 18 games into Facebook's app directory. I might mention that the games already exist as Skype Extras. Not only will the new app advertise this content to a fresh audience, the third party developers who provide Skype their games can also win new followers.
The single- and multiplayer games include bowling, Sudoku, Russian checkers, and backgammon. I launched the bowling game from Facebook, which opened the Extras Manager on Skype's app (which must be running in order to use the service) and it instructed me to choose an opponent from my buddy list.
The match proceeded as it would have had I plucked it from Skype's interface, which is to say it was a fun, engaging experience that took full advantage of Skype's all-in-one services to chat while "rolling," speak over VoIP, interact with a friend, and send screen shots via file transferring. But did I really need the Facebook app?… Read more
Skype and Logitech have partnered, hoping to do for video calling what Loggins and Messina did for yacht rock. The beautiful music the two companies hope to create with their union is high-quality video calling, with promises of VGA (640x480) resolution and a smooth 30 frames per second. To get the goods, you'll need one of three Logitech cameras: the QuickCam Pro 9000, the QuickCam Pro for Notebooks, or the QuickCam Orbit AF and the latest version of Logitech's Webcam software, QuickCam 11.5. You'll also need the latest Skype client, version 3.6, along with a … Read more
Today Skype and 3 announced a mobile phone that will allow users to make free Skype-to-Skype calls and send free instant messages over 3G, in addition to making normal phone calls and browsing the Internet.
3's Skype phone also packs a 2-megapixel camera, Bluetooth, an expandable micro SD card slot (up to 1GB) and weighs a pocket-friendly 85g. The star feature however, has to be the ability to make cheap Skype calls.
Talkster has been getting some buzz from fellow CTIA-goers. The new international dialing service is offering free global calls in exchange to listening to a few ads. The VoIP-based, phone-centered service feels like the perfect Skype (download) and Pincity mashup. It's free like Skype, and also relies on a VoIP backbone, but like Pincity, Talkster makes use of local numbers to initiate mobile and landline calls.
It sure sounds irresistible, and I've read a few glowing reviews, but in actuality it's a bit tricky. Talkster members enter their number and the number they're calling, and Talkster assigns a new, local number for callers on each end of the line. Say what?
If I want to call my sister in England, I enter both our phone numbers and receive a third number in my 415 area code. That's my permanent number for the phone number I just entered. My sister will get a number for me too. If I want to catch her at home, work, and on her cell phone for free, I'll need to enter each phone number and get three separate Talkster lines.
It wouldn't be so confusing if that were all, but of course it's not. Initiating a call isn't merely the result of dialing one of my Talkster-issued local numbers. There's an order to the calling system. Let's say I initiate the call to my darling sib using a Talkster phone number. I dial the appointed number in my area code and she picks up. But we can't talk yet. She first has to hang up while I stay on the line. My sister then quickly locates her local number, and while Talkster servers do some speedy math to connect our loose ends together, we both listen to an ad. Or that's the plan as soon as Talkster's ad deals are in place.… Read more
I noted a few weeks ago that I was considering dropping Vonage for Skype. Today, I pulled the trigger. After several weeks with no Vonage, I've been much happier. Skype actually works most of the time. Vonage? Almost never (at least during this past year - it used to be much better).
So, today I canceled my Vonage account. So that I have a "real" phone service I also signed up for Comcast's Digital Voice service. I'll give that a spin for a few weeks to see if it's solid. If not, I'll … Read more
NoiseFree VoIP has just launched a fresh all-software solution to those often noisy VoIP calls. Skype, Yahoo Messenger with Voice, and Google Talk are great ways to save money on long distance, but if you're calling anywhere near civilization, you're bound to get interference. A noisy line can undo the advantage of free Internet calls.
Until December 31, 2007, NoiseFree VoIP is offering a free beta of its noise-canceling software to registered users. I gave it a go at CTIA (coverage), and was impressed with the demo. There was noticeable improvement in call quality when I toggled the … Read more
Skype is sounding the security alert, and users should take note before using the Internet calling service.
A Trojan horse disguised as Skype Defender, a security plug-in, is making the rounds, according to a Skype security blog.
The malicious software, which affects Windows users, steals Skype log-on and password information once the program is executed. Similar log-in credential information saved in Internet Explorer is also gleaned by the Trojan horse.
If a user installs the bogus security plug-in, a malicious "Skype Defender" confirmation window pops up and asks the user to log into his or her Skype account. … Read more
MySpace and Skype are set to announce on Wednesday that the eBay-owned telephony client will be providing voice chat services for the News Corp.-owned social network's instant messaging client, MySpaceIM. Financial terms of the partnership were not disclosed.
Through this deal, MySpace users will be able to link their profiles to Skype accounts, and will be able to place voice chat calls through the MySpaceIM client or the Skype client to both Skype and MySpace members--but if your MySpace profile is set to "private," you will be exempt from calls from people who aren't on … Read more