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All posts tagged "skype"


Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Logitech And Skype Team Up On TV Cam

Posted by Brad Wasson in "Digital Home Talk" @ 10:00 AM

http://gizmodo.com/5931526/this-200...-a-skype-center

"The TV Cam HD is compatible with any HDMI-equipped TV, and can use either Wi-Fi or ethernet to hook up to the internet. The device is pre-loaded with Skype-running on what we're not quite sure-so you can just use it to log in to your existing account and make video calls, or proper phone calls using credit."

If you've ever wanted to use your TV as a Skype-compatible device then this product may interest you. You'll need an HDMI-equipped TV to connect this device to, but as long as you have a Wi-Fi or ethernet connection to your TV you will be all set. Simply log in to your existing account and make video calls, or proper phone calls using credit. If you get a call while your TV is off it will still ring, alerting you that someone wants to Skype. Some expect that this sort of capability will be built into future TVs, but if you just bought a new one and plan to keep it for years to come, this option may be very attractive.


Friday, June 10, 2011

Weekend Project: Give Digital Home Server A Try

Posted by Brad Wasson in "Digital Home Talk" @ 04:00 PM

http://www.digitalhomeserver.net/index.html

"As part of my hobby I wrote an application called the "Digital Home Server". The website is http://www.digitalhomeserver.net. I use this software at home, but I make it available to everybody for free."

If you have some spare time this weekend you may want to try out this free home server software. Written for Windows, it supports monitors of any size, touch screens, home automation, and, of course, multimedia. But there's more: radio, podcast and video modules, and even Skype integration, are also included. Authored by Soitjes, this is clearly a hobby project that has grown wildly in size. Based on the developer's release notes, the product has been designed as an extensible platform, and he has plans to expand it further in the months ahead. An interesting future plan seems to involve controlling Digital Home Server with SMS messages. The software is free with no ads or nag screens. Full details available by clicking on the Read link.


Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Microsoft & Skype: Fantasy History

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Digital Home Talk" @ 11:06 AM

Microsoft's purchase yesterday of Skype (barring any barriers that is) reminded me of a piece of Microsoft technology that I was keeping in storage - so I thought I'd do a quick photo-hack job and play a little "what if" game. Are there any readers of this site that owned this particular product? It was quite amazing for its time - I remember being upset when no drivers were created for Windows 2000, thus ending my use of the product (before Windows XP came out, Windows 2000 was *it* baby!). It had insanely cool functionality for the time - including voice command dialling, caller ID announcement, and it would link up with your contacts program on the desktop computer. Frankly, when I look at how "dumb" my landline phone is, I'd love to see something like this, updated with newest technology - like, say, Skype!


Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Microsoft Buys Skype: This is Good for Windows Phone 7 and Windows Tablets

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Windows Phone News" @ 09:13 AM

http://www.microsoft.com/Presspass/...CorpNewsPR.mspx

"Microsoft Corp. (Nasdaq: "MSFT") and Skype Global S.à r.l today announced that they have entered into a definitive agreement under which Microsoft will acquire Skype, the leading Internet communications company, for $8.5 billion in cash from the investor group led by Silver Lake. The agreement has been approved by the boards of directors of both Microsoft and Skype...With 170 million connected users and over 207 billion minutes of voice and video conversations in 2010, Skype has been a pioneer in creating rich, meaningful connections among friends, families and business colleagues globally...Skype will support Microsoft devices like Xbox and Kinect, Windows Phone and a wide array of Windows devices, and Microsoft will connect Skype users with Lync, Outlook, Xbox Live and other communities. Microsoft will continue to invest in and support Skype clients on non-Microsoft platforms."

I was initially a bit skeptical of the Skype purchase - and boy, I'm impressed that Microsoft and Skype were able to keep this a secret until just before the announcement - but upon further reflection (and reading the thoughts of others) I think this is a good move. Windows Live Messenger already has voice and video capabilities, but it never attained the mindshare and usage patterns of Skype. Skype has become a verb, and owning a verb in our world is a powerful thing. The biggest news for Windows Phone users is that you can bet powerful and deep integration into Windows Phone is now on the map. Skype's huge user base is nothing to scoff at, and if Windows Phone becomes the premiere Skype platform - especially as VOIP usage continues to soar - that can only mean good things for Windows Phone, and for the future tablet-optimized version of Windows 8.


Monday, March 14, 2011

Review: Top 5 VOIP Apps

Posted by Danny Simmons in "Digital Home Software" @ 10:19 AM

http://lifehacker.com/#!5781404/the...voice-chat-apps

"Whether you use them for business communication, talking to family over long distances, or just fragging your friends over the latest FPS, communication has been revolutionized by voice calling apps. Here's a look at the five most popular options for having voice conversations over the internet."

Whether it be on your desktop or your mobile device, VOIP applications are becoming more and more popular. This is a good review of some of the best. Which one is your favorite, and why?


Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Skype to Get Ads

Posted by Hooch Tan in "Digital Home News" @ 02:00 PM

http://www.ubergizmo.com/2011/03/ad...isements-skype/

"Bad news for folks who aren’t a fan of adverts and use Skype. If the little ad on the bottom left corner wasn’t enough to irk you, Skype has announced that they will be adding another advert to their highly popular VoIP program. The ads will appear in the Skype “Home” screen and this week, the ads will be from Groupon, Visa and Universal Pictures."

It had to happen eventually. Skype, that wonderful, free Internet phone platform had to succumb to economics at some point. Yes, they have premium services, but not much money is made off of that and while the free services only have a marginal cost to the company, when you multiply that cost by over 600 million users, it still adds up. While I am no thrilled about ads, I think it is a fair trade off for what Skype offers. If it helps keep Skype running, I am all for it. Most computers these days are more than powerful enough to handle displaying an ad or two in addition to everything else it is doing, and I hardly see the Home page anyways.

Tags: software, skype

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Webcams for Hi-Def Video Chat

Posted by Reid Kistler in "Digital Home Hardware & Accessories" @ 05:30 PM

http://www.engadget.com/2010/06/28/...ke-on-logitech/

"[I]t wasn't long ago that VGA was good enough for online chatting. No more, and with the release of SkypeHD going high-def is easier than ever. To find out which multi-megapixel movie maker you want to clip onto your display... we gathered three cameras at a range of prices. Two will work with some particularly advanced TVs, while the third cam shuns Skype, offsetting that shortcoming with a middle-ground price and superior video quality. Which is your ticket to HD chat bliss, and how do they all compare to plain 'ol VGA?"

If you are in the market for a Hi-def Video Chat Camera, Tim Stevens has posted an article that will help you get started at Engadget.com, looking at models from FaceVision (TouchCam N1), Freetalk (Everyman HD), and Logitech (HD Pro Webcam C910). The article is fairly brief, but it does a nice job of summarizing the advantages and disadvantages of each model, particularly as regards their use with the SkypeHD service. Furthermore - and in addition to a number of useful photographs - an included video shows the HD output from each of these cameras, along with a section shot at standard VGA for comparison. Alas, each of these models presents at least one inherent flaw: the Everyman HD lacks a built-in microphone, the TouchCam N1 is relatively expensive, and the C910 lacks an onboard decoder and is - apparently - not compatible with SkypeHD (Logitech does offer instructions for using the C910 with "Skype," and also provides its own free HD video chat software, VID HD). These are not the only choices available, but the article provides a nice starting point for making an informed purchase. If you use video chat, is this the right time to go Hi-def?


Friday, February 26, 2010

Talk to your Friends and Relatives in HD with Skype

Posted by Hooch Tan in "Digital Home News" @ 11:00 AM

http://www.ehomeupgrade.com/2010/02...eps-on-growing/

"It was just last month at CES when Skype announced its partnerships with LG Electronics and Panasonic to deliever Skype-enabled TVs to the market. Today Samsung is announcing that all Samsung LED 7000 and 8000 series HDTVs will be Skype-enabled as well."

I can see how some people might like this idea, but the picture that Skype presents somehow seems a bit creepy to me. I think the whole concept of something that is for all intents and purposes 'always on' that can snoop on me tickles my privacy bone. While it is probably quite comfortable and natural to talk to your peeps through a big screen so it is almost like you are in the same room, for all I know, some school administrator could be sneaking snapshots while I sit in front of the TV and fulfil my guilty pleasures like The Princess Bride or The Pirate Movie. Does anyone see something like this as a good idea?


Thursday, January 7, 2010

HD Video Calls With Skype Coming Soon

Posted by Jon Childs in "Digital Home News" @ 09:30 AM

http://share.skype.com/sites/en/201...n+(Share+Skype)

"With the right gear, you'll soon be able to make Skype video calls in 720p HD. The latest beta version of Skype for Windows now supports HD-quality video (1280 x 720 resolution at up to 30 frames per second), giving you an even smoother and richer video calling experience than ever before."

Skype with HD-quality video seems like a pretty cool new feature, but will only become really useful when everyone upgrades to the special HD webcams. The really neat thing though is that Skype has partnered up with LG and Panasonic to offer Skype on your TV. With the price of LCD TVs coming down so quickly, it makes sense for the manufactures to add Skype to their premium models to help stop the price erosion. Making HD video calls for free on the TV really appeals to the geek in me. We have been waiting for years for the phone company to give us video phones. As it turns out, flat panel display manufactures and Skype may be the ones who finally take video calling mainstream.


Tuesday, March 25, 2008

FREETALK Stereo Wireless Headset: Bluetooth That Works

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Digital Home Hardware & Accessories" @ 07:00 AM



As a rule, I tend to find that Bluetooth sucks. Not the technology itself, but the implementation of the drivers and software. Configuration tends to be much harder than it should be, and I always find myself fighting to get even the simplest Bluetooth functionality set up. Not so with the FREETALK Stereo Wireless Headset - it just works. I was given this headset at CES in January 2008, and frankly I didn't think I'd use it. I've been using a wired Plantronics headset for over six years now, and the audio quality is superb. I figured I'd give this FREETALK headset a try, and I'm glad I did - I was amazed that I could just plug it in and it worked. The first time I connected it to my Windows Vista-based desktop, I had to go into the sound settings and tell the system to use the FREETALK to record and play back audio on, but on subsequent connections this setup is remembered. Read more...


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