Hello. We’re Skype and we’ve got something
we would like to share with you.
What we’ve got is a simple bit of software we want to give you. It’ll let you make free calls to your friends all over the world. And we don’t want any money for it. It’s free.
You could think of us as the big, free Internet telephony company. We prefer to think of ourselves as a big group hug, even a present. Yes… that’s it… we’re a present… but without the ribbon.
Skype in a nutshell.
Our software’s quick and easy to get started with. Download, register, install, plug in your headset, speakers or USB phone and start calling your friends. The calls have excellent sound quality and are highly secure with end-to-end encryption. You don’t even need to configure your firewall or router or any other networking gear. It just, you know… works.
Bridging the gap.
And it doesn’t just work on Windows, like some other software you may know. Skype is also for Mac OS X, Linux and PDAs using Pocket PC, with a native look and feel for each platform. Talking, sending instant messages or even file transfers work between different platforms like a charm.
Calling regular phone numbers.
If there weren’t enough ways for you to contact your friends, we have a little thing called SkypeOut. It lets you make calls to old-fashioned phone numbers all around the world. Landlines, mobile phones... it works with almost all of them. SkypeOut is not free but it is pretty cheap, actually. You can read more about SkypeOut if you wish.
Make sure you’re on the same page.
You know how Skype to Skype calls are free and work? Well, we’ve taken the same recipe and applied it to file transfers. Since most things you want your friends to see tend to be rather large, we made our file transfer work with all the file sizes your operating system can handle. For most people, that’s between 2 or 4 gigabytes. And remember, it works from Windows to Mac to Linux and the other way around. No platform problems here.
Nobody’s listening in.
When it comes to talking, instant messaging or transferring files, we’ve gone to great lengths to make it secure. Skype automatically encrypts everything before sending it through the internet. Likewise, on arrival everything is decrypted on-the-spot and presented as crystal clear speak, text or a file transfer nobody can intercept.
Yes, you heard it right.
All the security in the world wouldn’t matter, though, if you couldn’t hear the other person. With Skype, you can. We’re working with the very best in the industry to provide a sound quality far superior to what you’re used to from ordinary telephones. If you will bear with us for a moment here we’d like to share some technical stuff with you: with normal telephones you can only hear sounds from 300 Hz to 3 kHz. Not so with Skype; We’re all over the spectrum, from the lowest hum to the highest screetch. In other words: ‘F’ and ‘S’ will sound like the two different letters they were meant to, and in the end you will be able to have a much more natural conversation.
Getting the words out.
That also goes for conferences. It’s completely secure for you and up to four others to get together to coordinate tactics in a game, make one of those important business decisions or simply have a chat, even if you’re all on different continents.
Needle. Haystack. Solution.
Searching for those long-lost relatives or just somebody to have a quick chat with is also part of what Skype is all about. We have what we call a Global User Directory. It’s a giant phonebook of all the people who use Skype. You can use it to search for people you’d like to talk to, people who have the same birthday or people who just happen to live in the same street as you.
Is anybody out there?
When you find somebody you know or even someone you would like to know, you add them to your list of contacts. You can also write a little note to let them know who you are and why you want to add them to your list. Handy, if your separated-at-birth-twin finds you on Skype. When people are on your list, you can see if they are online, offline, busy... or perhaps out to lunch.
When actual, spoken words fail you.
Did we mention that you can also send instant messages with Skype? Well, you can. That’s nice for when you’re talking about a website and you want to send that really long address or if you’re writing a song maybe. Either way, you can send one of those little smiley faces along with your message. Smile to the world and the world smiles back.