Posted on 2-Dec-2005 08:18
Filed under: News
Skype has released the beta version of Skype 2.0. The new version of the software continues to offer free Internet calls, while providing greater ease of use, integrated video calling, and enhanced features.
Skype also announced its collaboration with global headset and Webcam partner Logitech, as well as partnerships with Webcam manufacturer Creative, and with weblog software and services company Six Apart.
The software is available for download now and includes Skype Video, an integrated video calling that allows users to see each other while placing a call over the Internet. Compatible with almost any Webcam, Skype Video is fully integrated into Skype calling, and can be adjusted to provide full-screen video with just one click.
Skype has partnered with Logitech to jointly market Skype video and offer select Skype-certified Webcams including the Logitech QuickCam Fusion webcam and the QuickCam for Notebooks Pro webcam. The Webcams come complete with Logitech Video Effects software, a 1.3 megapixel sensor, Logitech RightLight technology, Logitech RightSound technology, intelligent face tracking and a Logitech headset, providing a complete package to begin using Skype video right away.
Skype is also working with Creative, who introduced a Skype Certified Webcam for use with its new video-based Internet phone service. Known as the Creative WebCam Instant Skype Edition, this new Webcam comes with a personal headset with microphone, software and a stand-alone microphone for use when several people wish to talk.
People can find Skype Certified products, such as Webcams, headsets and USB phones online, at U.S. retailers such as RadioShack, and at select retailers in Europe.
Skype 2.0 brings a simplified user interface, offering a new menu with one-click access to key features and options. New on this version is the option to personalise the user interface, with avatars or custom ring tones.
For users communicating across countries the software now shows each contact's own local time. It also introduces the concept of groups, so that users can organize contacts by grouping friends, co-workers or family members. A conference call can be initiated with a whole group with a single click.
For users of Microsoft Outlook, the new Skype Toolbar brings one-click calling to contacts directly from the Microsoft Outlook address book.
Skype 2.0 also offers users the ability to show their availability and initiate Skype calls directly from a blog or personal Web site. Skype has partnered with Six Apart, to let users of its TypePad personal blogging service integrate Skype presence into their weblogs. Skype users, who use TypePad for their blogs, can indicate to visitors on their site when they are online, and allow visitors to easily initiate a Skype call right from the Web page.