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Introduction to Skype
Every Internet user employs some mode of instant messaging. For instance there is text messaging in the form of chat; sometimes video conferencing is also available in certain applications that permit video streaming over the Internet. Skype is one of the more popular instant messaging applications, which allows audio and video streaming conversations.
All that is required to Skype is a user account. The user can then add contacts using the Search tool. When one of their contacts is online, the user can then initiate a voice call, which has optional video. The contact answers the call through their own Skype interface, and thus the two contacts can carry on a voice conversation.
Skype is free to use for voice and video calls over the Internet, however it charges set rates for calls from the Internet to traditional phones, like landlines or mobile numbers. The user needs to top up their account, and the call charges are deducted accordingly from that balance as per usage.
The reason for Skype’s widespread popularity is its well-designed interface and excellent streaming quality. It is an especially popular option for users with friends and family in different countries.
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Skype for Symbian
Until very recently, there were a few third party clients for Skype on mobile phones. Evidently these did not have the full range of functions as compared to the original desktop software. However that has now changed, since Skype has released an official mobile app.
It has all the features of the fully fledged software application on the desktop, including Internet telephony and chat. Contacts can be imported from the phone’s address book easily and used in the app.
The Skype mobile app, known as Skype for Symbian, as the name suggests, is only available on Symbian phones for now. The app is also only compatible with the latest version of Symbian, and support for older versions will be released shortly. There are plans to roll out versions of the app for other mobile platforms at a much later stage.
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Using Skype on Nokia 5800
Downloading the app and installing it is straightforward – it can be downloaded for free from the Skype website or the Ovi Store. The app can be installed on the phone’s internal memory, or an external memory device.
The user can employ the same account as their desktop version. Evidently it requires an Internet connection to run, and if one is available at all times, notifications of incoming messages and calls will display on the screen. There are a number of settings that help customize the interface according to the individual preferences of the user.
The app mimics the desktop application pretty faithfully, using tabs to access different functions. It can also be used to send files to contacts, which is a truly impressive feature for a mobile app.
The Nokia 5800 is ideally suited to the mobile app, as it has the latest version of the Symbian operating system, in addition to a video conferencing secondary camera.