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Lena Z

Page history last edited by Lena Zubaid 9 years, 6 months ago

 

 

 

By: Lena Zubaid

 

What is Skype?

Skype is a Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) application that allows people to make voice calls and video calls over the Internet. Skype is a free application when used over the Internet to other Skype users, while Skype calls to phones and landlines can be made with a reasonable fee (“Skype,” 2011).

 

VoIP and Skype

VoIP, otherwise known as Voice over Internet Protocol, is commonly known as phone services over the Internet. Since the invention of the first telephone, VoIP has spread like wildfire to this day. Skype does not follow the telecommunication voice policy; therefore it is a different type of communication and also a better one. Also, different groups of people shape the outcome of VoIP’s in different countries and communities. Skype “relies on PCs as access terminals and therefore does not offer a full substitute for voice telephony.” Skype is also “viewed as an “information society service” and are freed from conventional telecommunications regulation” (Bach & Sallet, 2005).

 

Skype Features

Skype has various features that make it a worthwhile application to have. This best feature Skype has is video conferencing. With video conferencing, users can have a conference with more than one person and users can see all the people they are talking to as well. Another feature Skype has is instant messaging, just like texting; users can also IM other Skype users instead of calling them. File transfer is also another feature that goes unnoticed. Skype can transfer very big and numerous files to different users. One feature that is found very amusing is screen sharing, users are able to see the other person's screen and see exactly what they are doing (Booth, 2010). There are also many more features that Skype has ("Make the most of Skype," 2011). Skype is being used more and more by different users because of its numerous features. Teenagers are also starting to get into using Skype because it is also a way for teenagers to IM each other for free (Lenhart, 2009).

 

This is a funny video that shows you all the features of Skype.

 

Skype’s Different Platforms

Skype runs on numerous platforms today, many changes have been made in the past five years. Skype was only run on a computer or laptop, but now Skype is being run on more than fifty types of mobile phones (“Skype,” 2011). Skype can also be run on the iPod touch, television sets, and much more.

 

This is what Skype looks like on an iPhone.

With the iPhone, Skype uses the phone data to make free calls to other Skype users. “Unlike Apple's FaceTime video chatting feature that only works on Wi-Fi networks, Skype users can video chat with each other over a 3G connection” (Aamoth, 2011).

 

This is what Skype looks like on a Windows computer.

 

This is what Skype looks like on a Mac.

 

This is what Skype looks like being used on a TV.

 

Skype Upgrades

Skype has evolved very much since 2008; 2008 was probably the year when Skype became really famous and was used by most of the world. Since then, Skype has been upgraded to all types of mobile phones, different Apple devices and also television sets. Who knows what they are coming up with next. Recent interviews have been made with Skype’s Sten Tamkivi, and he mentions that there are many more updates that will be coming out for users to enjoy (Vitaliev & Sangani, 2010).

Skype has more than 400 million users in 2009, and it is still growing rapidly. In 2009, Apple has finally embraced Skype into all of its platforms and is putting a limit on its many features. The way Skype evolved on the iPhone was first, it was not allowed on the iPhone, next it was allowed but it could not be used over the 3G network, users needed to connect to a Wi-Fi with their phone in order to use Skype. Also, the only features it had was to call other users and Instant Message them. Now, Skype on the iPhone can call, Instant Message, be used over the 3G network as well, and best of all, it can make video calls too (Stone, 2009).

 

Skype Benefits

Skype is sometimes overlooked as something useful for professional use. On the contrary, Skype is mostly helpful with business endeavors. Not only is Skype used for leisure and fun, but it is also used to conduct business related tasks and also for interviewing. Interviewing can be much easier if it were done over Skype, of course there are many downsides to that but nonetheless, it is also a hassle free tool to help employers get through many interviewees in one day. Skype users use Skype to be able to not worry where the other person is and just do their business and get the work over with without having to wait for a person to arrive, or find a good time to meet in a good place where both parties are able to make it. Skype has made it easier for many employees to talk to each other over Skype to be able to get a job done with no hassles involved (Masum & Tovey, 2006).

There are many businesses that use Skype for their work. Skype connects 85 employees across four continents with friends and family, and Skype lets people stay connected with their family and friends back home. Business companies claim Skype is beneficial because employees stay connected with Skype calls on their mobiles, video conferencing and IM, and it also reduces travel time. They also claim that it is a better and cheaper way to communicate and stay ahead of the game (“Many businesses are using Skype, 2011).

A long time ago, television sets only had a couple of channels that worked and there were many frequencies left unused. In 2010, there were many frequencies that had a high demand from customers because those frequencies hardly have static and they are also in good shape in any type of weather. Some problems that Skype could have is that when it gets closer to other frequencies, airwaves will get in the way and won’t be able to transmit the right things (Bigger and better than Wi-Fi, 2010).

 

Skype Disadvantages

It is argued that Skype is non-beneficial to business companies and it is actually a distraction in the work place. Many surveys have been conducted in the work place asking, "When working in the workplace, do you keep connected with your coworkers and clients through instant messaging?" About 30% of employees answered yes to this question. Another statement that was asked was, "I rarely complete a work task without being interrupted." About 50% of employees agreed to this statement. "I spend a substantial amount of my time communicating or sharing information with others" is another statement that was asked to respond to and almost all employees agreed with this statement (Garrett & Danzinger, 2007).

 

This graph shows the statistics of how many people in the workplace get interrupted, whether they are IM users or not.

 

This graph shows the statistics of how many people in the workplace share their work information with others, whether they are IM users or not.

 

Skype and Phone Companies

Phone companies have to battle with Skype because Skype is taking over all voice calls that also includes video. Skype is trying to beat phone company prices when calling non-Skype users. Long distance phone calls are very expensive and Skype is trying to help their users by giving them the ability to call long distance without having over sized bills to pay (Mercier, 2011). Skype provides cheap international rates and a little over eight billion minutes are paid from Skype to traditional phone lines. Skype is the largest provider of international calls in the world (Singel, 2009). 

There are some countries in the world where Skype is banned because of the impact it has on phone companies. At one point in some parts of China, Skype was not allowed to be used. In France, Skype is not allowed to be used in public research and education. In India, they stated that they were shutting down all Internet telephony services due to loss of revenue and security risks. In Germany, Skype was violating one of their laws for products. Also, in countries such as the United Arab Emirates, Oman, and Kuwait, Skype.com was banned and people were not allowed to buy minutes on their website or download Skype at all, this of course did not stop users from downloading Skype in different ways. The reason they blocked their website was because those countries were trying to maintain their monopoly on the telecommunications market (“Skype Limited,” 2011).

 

 

 

Resources

 

 

 

 

  • *Booth, C. (2010). Chapter 2: IP phones, software VOIP, and integrated and mobile VOIP. Library Technology Reports 46(5), 11-19.

 

 

 

 

 

List of Websites:

 

 

 

 

 

Pew Internet Reference:

 

Lenhart, A. (2009). Teens and mobile phones over the past five years: Pew Internet looks back. Pew Internet and American Life Project. Retrieved March 30, 2011 from http://www.pewinternet.org/Reports/2009/14--Teens-and-Mobile-Phones-Data-Memo/1-Data-Memo.aspx?view=all

 

 

Comments (32)

Aubrey Lee said

at 2:13 am on Apr 21, 2011

Lena! I love Skype and I believe that we talked about this in class. Looks like you are still working on it but I like what you have done so far.

Lena Zubaid said

at 2:20 am on Apr 21, 2011

Hey thank you! Ya we did. Yes I still am working on it!! Going crazy here! Hopefully it is good enough when I am done.

jt_thizzle@... said

at 9:10 am on Apr 21, 2011

Never used Skype so it was interesting to read your wiki. It definitely made me want to check it out. Good job and good use of information. And good job for getting it done early!!!

Lena Zubaid said

at 9:12 pm on Apr 22, 2011

thnxx :D

uismiguel@... said

at 3:02 pm on Apr 21, 2011

i have never used skype, but i believe that it is fun to use it. know that i see so many new topics that i have heard of, i am getting interested in read and inform my self about this topics. i like this topic a lot, and you have really good information. good work..

Lena Zubaid said

at 9:13 pm on Apr 22, 2011

thnx :) I love skype!!

Jay Barton said

at 10:37 am on Apr 27, 2011

Very nice job so far Lena! I just got an email offer from skype (yes, I too am a skyper... I'm 'sharxjay' on there also) to download skype to my android phone. Only problem, I have the Google G1 and you need version 2.2 or newer for skype to run it :-( . Sounds like it might be time for me to go get that new Samsung Galaxy I been wanting and start skyping away. Love the topic and the page so far. Will definately check it out on Friday to see the final product.

Lena Zubaid said

at 8:34 pm on Apr 27, 2011

Thanx Jay! I love skype very much, saved me a lot of phone bills!! Maybe you should get the Samsung Galaxy, I'm not the kind that loves to get a better phone but hey I say go for it!! :)

gre_89@hotmail.it said

at 11:53 am on Apr 27, 2011

Lena, good job! This topic is really interesting! I use Skype every day to speak with my family and friends in Italy. It is so useful.

Lena Zubaid said

at 8:35 pm on Apr 27, 2011

It is!! I talk to my family too! Thank You Greta!

Jenna Saenz said

at 4:45 pm on Apr 27, 2011

Oh My Gosh! I Love Skype!! I love it even more though that I get it on my iPhone!!! Awesome topic!

Lena Zubaid said

at 8:35 pm on Apr 27, 2011

haha I did the same!! thnx

Daniel Preston said

at 8:08 pm on Apr 27, 2011

Skype is the best. I jumped on board when the program was released back in 2003 and it has completely changed the way I talk to my family that lives out of state.

Lena Zubaid said

at 8:36 pm on Apr 27, 2011

That's awesome! Ya I got it a long time ago too and underestimated its value until I came to America!!

Serena Sharma said

at 10:38 am on Apr 28, 2011

I'm looking forward to learning more about this. I recently made an account so that I could chat with friends in other countries! You have good info can't wait to see the finished product!

Lena Zubaid said

at 1:40 am on Apr 29, 2011

thank you :)

Justine Cranford said

at 11:08 pm on Apr 28, 2011

Skype is awesome. I don't use if much but it awesome and great job on all your work I look forward to your presentation. :)

Lena Zubaid said

at 1:41 am on Apr 29, 2011

Thanks Justine!!

Bobby Menbari said

at 11:18 pm on Apr 28, 2011

Skype is great and its built in to my tv! but i dont really use it that often.

Lena Zubaid said

at 1:42 am on Apr 29, 2011

Oh that's cool, I always wanted to see how it would work on the tv!!

dbooth said

at 12:41 am on Apr 29, 2011

I am still unsure about skype... I am old school- I prefer AIM. Fun page though you had a lot of neat information.

Lena Zubaid said

at 1:43 am on Apr 29, 2011

Skype is only cool if you like to talk to people kind of face to face and you want to call them for free, which in my case is all the time.

Juleane said

at 7:55 am on Apr 29, 2011

I can't believe it "Old school= AIM" wow that was 5 years ago?!!!

I love SKYPE!!! It connects me to my family while im at school and allows me to speak face-to-face with my uncle who lives in Japan so it is something I believe in!!!!

Great presentation and subject matter!!!! All your information was cool and interesting. The video, I really liked and thought it was perfect and even shared information I didn't even know like how you can use skype through your television?! Crazy! One thing this presentation and topic made me think of was the "Up in the Air" movie and using the video conference feature to fire employees. I wonder if anyone has ever used skype for that function in real life?! Anyways, you did really good work here!

reilingss2b7@... said

at 6:37 pm on May 2, 2011

this is a good topic, its crazy cause during this past weekend i was staying in a hotel with a friend and he was skyping his girlfriend 24/7 while we were there! kinda funny how life changes

dbooth said

at 5:38 pm on May 3, 2011

Last but not least, Lena Z. I thought you had a lot of nifty information. Your page had a lot of really high quality pictures, and the graphs were really nice as well. Skype is kind of uncomfortable for me because I hate taking pictures, or being on camera, and I hate talking on the phone. I will say the chat feature on Skype is leaps and bounds above the facebook chat feature. But I can definitely see the appeal that it has to other people. My Step-Mom is a good distance away from her baby granddaughter so she is able to use skype to see the baby. Even on a business aspect, this podcast I was listening to use to have people call in via skype. I am just not sure if it will ever be the next big thing, like facebook, or AIM was back in the day.

Jay Barton said

at 10:50 am on May 11, 2011

Wiki looks great Lena...I can't wait to see your presentation. Dr. Coopman said yesterday that Microsoft is buying Skype, which I hadn't heard. Bummer. I hope they don't ruin it, cause I love it. Was a great semester, I'm sure I'll see you next sem (we seem to sign up for the same classes!). Til then have a great summer.

Lena Zubaid said

at 11:08 am on May 12, 2011

Haha ya we do! I am also taking a summer class but the same as yours. It's funny how we are doing that too. You have a great summer too!

Jay Barton said

at 10:51 am on May 11, 2011

*Above Comments (x2) Go Together*

ericadeguzman@yahoo.com said

at 8:48 pm on May 11, 2011

I’ve never actually used Skype myself before.. I mean I understand that it’s a great tool for those who may live far away from a loved one or for business or anything else.. I just don’t understand why friends who see each other everyday would want to use this. I’ve heard the phrases “skype me!” or “web cam me!” from a bunch of my friends and I’ve always thought in my head “no, that’s just weird!” But maybe I feel this way because I’m camera shy. But honestly now after viewing your wiki I have to admit I am kind of curious. You summarized Skype very well. Very informational. I had no idea you could IM other users while video chatting with them. That’s kind of odd seeing that you could just say whatever you had to say out loud rather than typing it in the IM box. Haha. And I liked all your pictures because it really gave me an idea of skypes format/layout. Well done, Lena!

Lena Zubaid said

at 11:12 am on May 12, 2011

Ya I do think it is weird for people to use it when they see each other every day. The only reason I use it is so I can talk to my family and friends back home in Kuwait. If I did not have Skype I would be paying so much money to talk to them, it is also nice to see them so it kind of feels like I am there with them.

gre_89@hotmail.it said

at 11:18 pm on May 11, 2011

Lena, as you rightly wrote, Skype is not only used for fun, but also for business-related tasks and for interviews. I never thought it could be seen as a distraction, so it has its disadvantages. It is a service that connects millions of users around the world via the Internet. Personally, I think it's great! I use it every day, talking to my family or my friends in Italy. Also, I use it to call landlines and cell phones, because it is very convenient and much cheaper! I read that Skype was recently bought by Microsoft for $ 8.5 billion. It seems that Microsoft won the challenge, outbidding Google and Facebook, who were interested in it too. So, Microsoft is Skype's fourth owner in eight years, and has declared it wants to offer more updated services.

Lena Zubaid said

at 11:10 am on May 12, 2011

I just hope Microsoft does not ruin Skype!! It is such a convenience!

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