Skype is a proprietary voice-over-Internet Protocol (VoIP) service and software application that allows users to communicate with others through video, voice and instant messaging.
Phone calls can be made over traditional networks used for telephone calls. Calls to traditional landlines and mobile phones are charged on the user’s account. This account utilizes debit cards in order to buy credits. Calls may be also placed to other users on Skype free of charge. Skype was first released in 2003 by Estonian developers. It was bought by Microsoft in 2011 for $8.5 billion.
Skype has many great features that have made it extremely popular. When you register for Skype you will be identified with a unique Skype name. It may be listed in the Skype directory. Skype will signify your online status, a profile picture and more. Once you are registered you can communicate with other users through instant messaging and voice chat. Skype’s text chat allows you to utilize group chat features, emoticons, storing chat history and you can even edit previous messages. Skype also offers free video conferencing for up to five people. Skype also offers video transfer, sharing of screens and teleconferencing. Skype for Windows supports “High Quality Video” that can give the user full screen and screen-in-screen modes similar to more high-end videoconferencing systems. Skype’s audio system can currently support audio conferences with up to 25 people at one time. Skype also allows users to use a Wi-Fi phone to make Skype calls.. This innovative phone has an onscreen menu that is very similar to what you would see on a computer when it comes to chat functions.
Skype uses it’s own Skype protocol which is a VoIP network. This protocol is a closed-source and Skype has not made it available publically. Some of Skype’s technology relies on the Global Index P2P protocol which belongs to Joltid Ltd. Corporation. Skype operates on a peer-to-peer model. Skype currently supports the IPv4 protocol. Skype runs on a number of platforms including: Microsoft Windows, Linux, Windows Phone, iOS and Android. It also runs on the following operating systems: Windows XP, Vista, Windows 7 and 8, Mac OS X, Adroid, Linux, iOS and more.
Security / Archiving
Skype offers you a variety of security features. Although the service is set to save your messages for up to three months, you can further secure your messages by requesting them to be deleted after a certain period of time. Skype is a fairly secure communication tool and encryption cannot be disabled. Skype uses publically documented secure encryption techniques in order to keep user security and privacy at the forefront. Some may find that there are security flaws though because users do not have to have any proof of identity when they register for Skype. Skype has been banned by some network administrators on corporate, government and education networks stating that it uses excessive bandwidth and cause create security concerns.
Skype has become a very popular instant messaging and video calling system. It is not just for those utilizing the service for business, but for personal as well. In 2011, Skype was stated as having over 145 million active users.
Overall Skype is a wonderful communication tool that can be used by the masses. You will find ways to connect with friends near and far for little to no money. The video conferencing feature allows users to stay in tune with each other’s’ lives. Skype also allows for business professionals to use the service to connect with partners and coworkers around the globe through instant messaging, video conferencing and voice conferences. Skype is definitely worth the download because it is easy to operate and has a very user-friendly interface.