These days, it is common for most people to use Skype to stay in contact with friends, family and business contacts who live in different cities. Grandparents can get to see their grandchildren grow up even when miles apart, a businessperson who travels a lot can stay in contact with family, and employers can use it to conduct interviews or stay in contact with remote employees. These uses are common, but the only feature most people use is your typical computer-to-computer video chat and instant messaging service. What other uses can this app have that will make your life easier? Read on to find out.
Use the Skype Wi-Fi Application
Do you have Wi-Fi here? This is a question a lot of us ask when we go somewhere. Now that we rely heavily Internet and technology, Wi-Fi has become important in most people’s lives. Skype actually has an application where you can log into over 2 million hotspots around the world. Although you will need to buy Skype Credit to pay for the minutes used, it can be useful when you only need to check something quick and have no other option. This interactive map allows you to search any city to find out where these hotspots are available.
Share your Computer Screen with Others
Sharing your computer screen with others can have many uses including business presentations and sharing pictures with loved ones. While in a voice or video call, sharing your screen with one or more people is very easy to do and does not cost a thing. While in a call, you will see a share screen button in the options menu (the options menu is the little plus sign between the microphone and end call buttons). This feature allows you to choose to share only a certain window or your entire screen.
Dial Straight From Your Browser
You can avoid the distraction of needing to use your cell phone while on the computer. You want to make a phone call, just searched for the phone number on your laptop, but what did you do with your phone? By simply installing the Skype Click to Call plug-in, you are able to click on phone numbers directly in your browser and make the call through Skype. This plug-in is available on Internet Explorer, Chrome and Firefox. When the phone number appears on your browser certain numbers will be labeled as free, but many will require you to buy a Skype subscription or Skype Credit.
Save on Local and Long Distance Calls
Of course, most people know that using Skype computer-to-computer is the best way to save money on long distance calls since simply having the Internet allows you to do it free. However, a lesser-known fact is that it is probably one of the cheapest ways to make calls to mobile and landline numbers. You can pay a small monthly fee for unlimited calling to specific countries, or if you prefer you can subscribe to the Unlimited World package. This subscription allows you to call to over 60 countries in the world, for a cost that is most likely lower than getting these services with a local telephone company.
Don’t be Consumed by the Endless Group E-mail
The group e-mail to make plans with many people at the same time has been helpful for many years, but we now have technology to make this easier. It is no secret that most of us have spent days answering back and forth to group e-mails. Although it is a good method to get everyone’s input on something, why not make it easier and have a group Skype session instead? This will put a stop the seemingly endless group e-mails since it will be like having everyone in one room, thus shortening the decision making process; as long as you don’t have the maximum of 25 people allowed in a single group chat. There is even more good news, it can be done directly from your Outlook account; all you have to do is install the Skype add-on.
Share Files Easily
The common way to share files with someone is by adding it to an e-mail attachment. Nowadays, high-resolution videos being the norm, many files you will want to share will be too big to do it the old-fashioned way. Skype instant messaging is a great way to share these files. Sending large files is very easy; simply drag and drop the file in the chat window of the contact with whom you wish to share.
Pick the Area Code of your Choice
Have you ever dreamed of having a Beverly Hills area code? Yeah, probably not, but now you know it is possible. At first glance, you may be wondering why you would want an area code other than where you live. Business reasons for one; maybe you have business contacts with many people from a certain city, and want to make it cheaper for them to call you. Maybe you moved to a new city and most of the people you call are in your hometown. In addition, you will have your mobile phone to make calls in the city where you live.
In the end, although Skype has been around for many years, it has evolved greatly from their original use of computer-to-computer calls. As shown above, Skype has many additional uses that can simplify your everyday life and help save you money. All this from one simple application that is already very familiar to most.