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So my mother has been pushing for me to "get skype" so while she's overseas she can see the girls and us realtime and talk to us cheap.

So i looked at the skype site and there was darn little info they would tell you without downloading their software. I've also noticed a Skype "package" at Walmart at some point?

So can anyone tell me what the story is with this? I'm leery of technology I've not seen work first hand and no one I know personally has sused this.

Thanks guys for any help.

Chas
 

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Hi Chas,

With Skype if you both have it you can call each other with Skype (so that means that you are both on the web) free. If one is using Skype the call are cheaper but you still have to pay - you buy credit fro Skype and that is used for the calls, on the screen the amount you have is shown.

I use it to talk to David Fletcher from the UK, it also allows you to send files that can be quite large (more than the e-mail limit of 10MB) between users. I have also used it to talk to Stan Cedarleaf who uses it as well.

A skype package is likely to be a Skype telephone handset(you will need one OR a headphone/microphone unit to use the phone system) that will still need Skype open on your computer, I believe though I am not sure on that. I would think that they use a USB plug to connect into the computer.

You can on headphone units get an echo; the phones say they stop that!
 

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I too use Skype all the time. I talk to my two friends, and my two daughters. It is free if they also have it, and it is very simple to use. You set up an account, add people with accounts and call away. You can also use it to make phone calls to telephones without the video. They say there is a charge for it, but so far, I have not been charged.
Everybody I Skype to has a Logitec Pro 9000 web camera. That thing is very clear, and sharp. I just bought one from Amazon for $ 76.00. My laptop built in camera is ok, but it looks like I am under clear water. It works just fine.

I highly recommend Skype, it is free, and fun. We use it to see the grandkids all the time.
Pual
 

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I've had Skype for several years now, and used it without a hitch My American family have all installed it. We chat frequently.
At one time Trainworld in NY had it, and it made my transactions with them easier.

I have found that a head set and boom mike to be the best functioning, any open desk top mike caused echo.
Cost? absolutely nothing.

Rod
 

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We use Skype and like it. My wife calls home to Japan and it is the lowest cost way to go. Our $25 increments last a long time. In fact, we discontinued all other long distance services from the phone company

I don't think you can send a fax with Skype, maybe you can, I don't know. In those cases we just scan in the image and e-mail it.
 

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I have certain, mainly evening and week-end calls in the UK free with my ISP. I use Skype for calls to the States and Indonesia and one or two other Countries. This is far the cheapest method when making calls that you have to pay for. As one or two others have mentioned Skype user to Skype user calls, anywhere in the world, are free.

An instance of its value can be seen from recent calls that I made to BNSF HQ at Fort Worth, Texas. (Some may remember be Licensing scare a few weeks ago). I was able to make two Toll Free calls from the UK. I can't think of any other way of doing that.
 

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Silly questions:

I have no idea how this works... I assume you need a video camera and a microphone and speakers that are somehow connected to your PC. Does it use your sound card or is something else needed... How? I have a "web cam" that is connected to my house local network via wireless internet (it has a resident web page embedded in it and I view the video using my web browser)... would it work?

I have to assume your PC has to be on and running some operating system, connected to the internet and running some memory resident program or have the browser open to a particular web site to receive calls, but what happens? Do your speakers make a sound like a phone ringing or a voice says, "You have phonecall?" (insead of "You have mail")... (I assume it could be user selected like all the other "event" sounds in Winders)? Or do you have to have some pre-arranged time, or telephone the recipient first to tell them to log onto some web site with a secret code in order to finally connect to them?

How do you "Dial"???

How do you call someone that is not running Skype (on their regular telephone)? How do you get billed for that? What does it cost?

How badly do the video and audio get separated or out of sync? My digital TV sound and video MOST of the time are so out of sync as to be very confusing; is Skype similar?

What is the video frame rate? Really slow (like 1 per second)? Variable? Real time? Is it like broadcast digital TV where the video gets garbled and blanks out, goes pixelated or blocky with partial new images mixed with small sections of new images. Is it smeary when there is motion?
 

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Posted By Semper Vaporo on 03/12/2009 3:40 PM
Silly questions:

I have no idea how this works... I assume you need a video camera and a microphone and speakers that are somehow connected to your PC. Does it use your sound card or is something else needed... How? I have a "web cam" that is connected to my house local network via wireless internet (it has a resident web page embedded in it and I view the video using my web browser)... would it work?

I have to assume your PC has to be on and running some operating system, connected to the internet and running some memory resident program or have the browser open to a particular web site to receive calls, but what happens? Do your speakers make a sound like a phone ringing or a voice says, "You have phonecall?" (insead of "You have mail")... (I assume it could be user selected like all the other "event" sounds in Winders)? Or do you have to have some pre-arranged time, or telephone the recipient first to tell them to log onto some web site with a secret code in order to finally connect to them?

How do you "Dial"???

How do you call someone that is not running Skype (on their regular telephone)? How do you get billed for that? What does it cost?

How badly do the video and audio get separated or out of sync? My digital TV sound and video MOST of the time are so out of sync as to be very confusing; is Skype similar?

What is the video frame rate? Really slow (like 1 per second)? Variable? Real time? Is it like broadcast digital TV where the video gets garbled and blanks out, goes pixelated or blocky with partial new images mixed with small sections of new images. Is it smeary when there is motion?




Skype is a software you download to your computer. You set up an account with them and maintain a $ balance, pay online with a credit card. The software has an address book like a "rolodex" You set up a contact much like an email contact. A contact can be Skype-to-Skype or Skype-to-telephone. Just select your contact and click the "call" icon. You hear a Skype ringtone and a regular call tone, just like on the telephone. If you call someone Skype-to-Skype, thier computer (and speakers) has to be on and the Skype software running. They will hear the Skype ringtone from the computer and answer the computer just like answering the phone. If you call Skype-to-telephone, their telephone rings, they answer it and have no idea you are on the computer.

A regular, generic computer microphone plugged into the motherboard jack is all you need for voice. We don't use the video feature, but my guess is that you are exactly right on how it works. The voice quality is excellent. Better than the stupid phone company.


We send Skype $25 and it lasts a very long time. Skype-to-Skype calls are free. Skype-to-telephone in the US is negligible. My wife calls to Japan for 2.3 cents per minute.
 

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I use skype we have the free software on all our laptops. I work away from home and we use it to talk for free using internet connections. I have all the family setup in contacts and don't receive any outside persons calls. There is only a fee I think if you use it to call a phone line outside the internet. You need broadband connections and good video cams on both ends to have any kind of quality. I does drop the calls from time to time but you can just call them right back. The software is pretty much straight forward so installation and using it should be no problem.

Good Luck!
Johnny
 

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I've been using Skype since "day one".

A camera is nice, but not required. A microphone is nice, but not required. If you have neither, you can just type messages from your keyboard.
 
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