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Ariella
Ariella
3/8/2016 7:41:32 PM
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Skype
<To which I say, "Skype had a smart TV app?"> @Mike I had the exact same reaction! I am a registerd Skype customer from back in the early days before it became part of the Microsoft empire. But I don't use it much at all and haven't stayed up to date on its offerings. 

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mhhf1ve
mhhf1ve
3/8/2016 7:51:51 PM
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Platinum
Re: Skype
Skype has had a weird history... No one seems to know what to do with it. Would eBay users ever want to communicate via Skype? Oh well. didn't happen... Would people watching TV want to Skype each other? Maybe? Oops. nope. 

Will Skype still exist on Xbox? As part of Outlook.com? As part of Outlook for business? Who knows? 

Will Skype survive after everyone has moved onto Slack and WhatsApp? Probably not. 

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mhhf1ve
mhhf1ve
3/8/2016 7:55:38 PM
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Platinum
How does Skype even work now?
Skype was once a P2P messaging application -- that *could* be encrypted end-to-end... But I think that version ceased to exist years ago. So now it's just like Google Hangouts with a few missing features and a few added ones. 

Messaging apps are going to be big.. but I'm not sure Skype is going to be able to ride the next wave. The history of "instant messaging" has a long line of failures. If MSFT isn't careful, Skype could be another billion dollar writedown someday.

 

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Ariella
Ariella
3/8/2016 8:02:08 PM
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Re: How does Skype even work now?
@mhhf1ve Years ago people were using it to make free calls -- with the option of video -- to places that had traditionally incurred high long distance charges. I wasn't really making those kinds of calls. I got it because some clients expected to be able to communicate via Skype, even though most of them used it as just a phone. Some were in Thailand, the UK, etc. and didn't want the phone charges.

I think I've only used it once for video because one person wanted to see me. But I found it a bit spotty. Some calls had more than one false start, and in one case, the guy who suggested it to connect gave up and just called me on my phone.

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mhhf1ve
mhhf1ve
3/8/2016 8:23:17 PM
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Platinum
Re: How does Skype even work now?
Skype to phone calls were what made Skype really popular. (I think it was called SkypeOut at one time?) And people use it as a "poor man's" videoconferencing tool... but as you point out, it's pretty spotty and "best efforts" internet connections aren't really great for high-quality video conferencing.

Skype used to be pretty good for sending files, too. Since it was a P2P platform, it could transfer files to a group of people pretty nicely... but I think that feature has disappeared? Dropbox and other services fill that role now... and I don't think MSFT wants to get into the legal liability of people sharing copyrighted files via Skype.

I'm wondering when Google Voice will try to merge with Hangouts and be more like Skype.. or if Google will eventually kill off Google Voice... 

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Ariella
Ariella
3/8/2016 8:34:46 PM
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Re: How does Skype even work now?
@mhhf1ve Google was doing its own phone service. Does that still exist? I never tried it.

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mhhf1ve
mhhf1ve
3/8/2016 8:44:04 PM
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Platinum
Re: How does Skype even work now?
> "Google was doing its own phone service.."

Hmm. Google Voice isn't exactly a phone service... it's a call forwarding service. So you need to have an existing phone, but then once you do.. you can set up another phone number (a Google Voice number) that will forward all your calls to your existing phone number. It's really really useful, actually. I use it all the time. 

Google also has Google Fi -- it's MVNO service. That's a mobile phone service that's built on top of Sprint ant T-Mo -- and allows phones on the service to use either network (and WiFi) to make calls and use data. And you can use Google Voice along with Google Fi.. so then that makes Google Voice an actual phone service. But I don't understand why Google doesn't make that combo more apparent... Google Voice has a ton of cool features -- eg. it transcribes voicemail robotically. It also lets you start recording a call at any time, so you can save it for notes later.... On top of the call forwarding, it also has a "call spam" filter -- so if you're getting calls from a number you don't want, you can send those calls to an automated message that says "this number is no longer in service. Goodbye."

Wish more phone services had all these features! (Ooma has some of them...)

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Ariella
Ariella
3/8/2016 8:51:14 PM
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Re: How does Skype even work now?
@mhhf1ve so that's how it works! I see. As i said, I never tried it. I noticed with Skype, it does give you an option of setting up a Skype number altogether, but that's one of the add-ons you pay for. I've only used it without any additional frills. 

Are the transcriptions on Google Voice completely acurate, or do they resemble closed captioning?

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elizabethv
elizabethv
3/9/2016 5:12:06 AM
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Platinum
Re: Skype
Skype is used pretty regularly in my place of business. I work for a treatment center and it allows our clients to communicate with legal staff and family that are located out of town. While many users are switching to other apps that might meet their more precise needs on their phones, from my experience Skype seems to have tried to diversify outside of that atmosphere. I do agree it will likely only last a few more years before being replaced by more modern technology, but it may not completely disappear. If they are smart they have enough groudwork laid in other areas. 

Do you think it's possible for Skype to come up with a business plan to survive? 

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Mike Robuck
Mike Robuck
3/9/2016 12:21:55 PM
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Re: Skype
@elizabethv, what about HIPPA requirements, does Skype provide enough security and privacy? I know that's a big deal for healtcare providers' broadband services. 

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