Skype 5.0 loves Facebook and video chat; download it now

Skype and Facebook (via
By Richi Jennings. October 15, 2010.

Skype 5.0 is ready to download. It's out of beta and now includes Facebook integration and better call reliability. It also previews a nifty multi-party video chat feature. In IT Blogwatch, bloggers just called to say they love you.

Your humble blogwatcher curated these bloggy bits for your entertainment. Not to mention Trek photo-manipulations...

"Mother" Maggie Shiels reports for Aunty Beeb:

The deal comes amid fevered rumours that Facebook plans to launch a phone of its own. ... Skype users can keep up-to-date and interact with their Facebook news feed including posting status updates, commenting and liking directly from Skype.


The Facebook phonebook in Skype allows users to call and text Facebook friends directly on their mobile phones and landlines ... [or] make free Skype-to-Skype calls. ... The move is seen as a natural one for the world's biggest social network. ... Skype has around 560 million registered users. ... Facebook has more than 500 million users ... there will be some overlap.

Ian Paul adds:

Skype in Facebook is obviously a big win for both companies. U.S. users spent more than 40 million minutes in August on the social network. ... Skype users worldwide spend an average of 520 million minutes every day using the online voice and video chat service.


In my tests, it appeared that Skype only has limited access to your newsfeed. ... Notifications such as photo comments or your friends' recent "likes" didn't show up. ... Skype 5.0 for Windows includes a beta ... group video chat feature that allows you to chat with up to nine other people. ... To improve call dependability Skype 5.0 will automatically try to reconnect your call if it drops.

But Rob Coppinger snarks it up:

Being hip and trendy is clearly all important to Skype ... it has jumped on the social notworking bandwagon to hitch its future to that bastion of personal privacy, Facebook. ... Will allow people prepared to tell the world about the minutiae of their lives to make ... calls with any of their 200 Facebook 'friends' they have never met.


We are also told that the new version of Skype has tutorials ... [including] "how to sign up for a subscription". Hint, hint.

And Mark Long wonders whither UC:

Skype's refreshed software demonstrates that the once highly touted field of unified communications (UC) could eventually become extinct. The leading edge of communications and collaboration is driven by companies like Facebook, Twitter, Skype, Fring, [and] Nimbuzz.

So Jasmine France fries freedom from traditional video conferencing:

The new Home page integrates a feed of mood messages from your contacts and yourself. ... The company also aimed to simplify the overall interface in order to make calling, messaging, screen sharing, and file transferring ... easier. ... The contact search screen now features images and mood messages and offers real-time results.


The video conferencing feature offers a few viewing options. ... The more interesting dynamic view ... increases the size of the person doing most of the talking at any given moment. We ... can see how it would be particularly useful for business calls.


And Finally...

Trek photo-manipulations (some great, some PSD-worthy)

[hat tip: Ken Gagne]

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Richi Jennings, your humble blogwatcher
  Richi Jennings is an independent analyst/consultant, specializing in blogging, email, and security. A cross-functional IT geek since 1985, you can follow him as @richi on Twitter, pretend to be richij's friend on Facebook, or just use good old email:

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Copyright © 2010 IDG Communications, Inc.

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