For so many, Skype is the first choice and best way of communication to friends and loved ones overseas or just a way of having a free catch-up when distance is great, even if they are globally ‘local’ to each other.
However, up until now Skype’s video call service has not got many talking as the video quality was poor and often started, jittered and stopped during conversations, despite the Internet connection being fairly good.
The snag is with the new version is that an HD webcam is needed, and most webcams either built into laptop screens or placed on a desk aren’t of great quality for the video they produce. So expect HD cameras to flood onto the marketplace soon. But for those wanting true 1080p picture quality they are going to need a zippy Internet connection and a proper HD camera such as Logitech’s Pro C920.
Microsoft has been busy merging more of its Skype and Facebook service together in this version. Users can now make video calls with Facebook friends even if the call recipient doesn’t use Skype. All that is needed to start a video call is to select the friend from your Facebook friends list in Skype and click ‘video call’. Easy as that.
Microsoft also wants more users to get into its search engine by adding the Bing toolbar into Skype.