Skype has established itself as a formidable competitor in the world of VOIP (Voice Over Internet Protocol) service. It is quickly becoming the popular alternative to landlines and other VoIP services that have already become so saturated in the market. While it may not quite be the next generation telephone, Skype is making a strong case for itself.
Here is a little background on Skype. There are a few different types of Skype.
The free Skype is available to anyone with an internet connection and is meant for those who are not yet very well versed in using the internet and all the technology that goes along with it, such as a computer and a modem. For this type of Skype, no one has to be a part of an active chat room or online group. The only requirement is that you should have an active internet connection. After logging into your Skype account, you will see that the Skype chat box appears. This is where you will be able to join a Skype chat room.
The premium Skype service is usually what most people would describe as a “real” Skype chat room. It has all the features that are typically found in actual Skype chat rooms. While it may not seem like something that is very appealing, it is actually a very handy feature. For example, you will find that the Skype chat box in premium Skype is much larger than the standard Skype chat box. This gives you more room to work with and creates a much more interactive experience. Because the larger Skype chat box makes use of the Skype home page, you will also be able to participate in any new Skype announcements that are made on this home page.
Skype is one of the classic communication services, online calls and video calls. The software was born years ago and became one of the most popular because it allowed us to communicate for free and even make video calls with friends or family. It is also one of the most useful tools for teleworking thanks to the possibility of making group calls or sharing the screen. But it is not the only one and we collect the best alternatives to Skype.
If you use Video calls, you will find it easier to communicate with your customers and clients, and that is the main reason why so many people are making the switch to video calling. In the past, people have had to use the phone to talk to their friends and family. These days, the same technology exists and will enable anyone to get in contact with their friend or relative. It is easy to use, and if you are looking for a way to expand your business to new areas, then it may be a good idea to look into using video calls. You will be able to help build a closer relationship with your customers by being able to see and hear them.
One of the most classic, although not widely used, but one of the best alternatives to Skype is Google Hangouts. Focused for a long time on the professional field but also on the staff, it is not as well known as Skype and the others. It allows meetings with up to ten people and the application is free and cross-platform: you can access it from your computer but also from iOS phones or tablets or from Android phones or tablets. To register you only need to have a Gmail account with email and access.
It is comfortable and free and allows up to ten people making it ideal for group video calls. Beyond using it for video calls, you can use it as a regular chat tool, to send written messages, attach photos … And its multiplatform function is one of the most interesting options if you are going to use it for teleworking, for example.
Beyond Hangouts, Google has Duo , a messaging and video calling application. Duo works on any device and is compatible with Android, iOS, iPadOS and the web version so you will not have problems connecting. And if you have smart speakers with a Google display, you can also use them for this. In addition, it allows group video calls with up to eight people so you can also use it for any group conference you want.
FaceTime is one of the most popular video call applications in recent years and is compatible with mobile devices or desktops. But it has a problem: it can only be used between iOS users. You can make video calls with FaceTime from the iPhone, iPad or from laptops or computers of the brand but you will not be able to do it from any PC or from any Android phone so the possibilities are more limited when it comes to communicating with friends and family because it will depend of the device they have at home.
FaceTime is included on all Apple devices and you can make video calls using Apple memojis, for example. It also allows you to make group video calls with versions equal to or greater than iOS 12.1.4 and with a maximum limit of 32 participants, which makes it one of the best if you are looking to make conversations with many people. Of course, all of them will have to use iOS.
Discord is a free, complete and recommended application for teleworking or for any other field. It is free and works through servers that you can connect to. Group video calls allow up to 50 people and allow very interesting options such as screen sharing for tutorials, limit the number of times each user can write, add bots, add installed games … It is one of the most complete and elaborate options. If you want something complete, it can be perfect for you. If you are looking for a simple and uncomplicated alternative, perhaps better to bet on the classic messaging applications you already have.
WhatsApp is one of the best alternatives to Skype if you are simply looking for something to always have on hand. The advantage is that practically everyone has WhatsApp and that it is one of the most complete messaging tools : it allows video calls, group chats, individual chats, voice calls … The drawback is that the web version does not have the possibility of video calls, although you can send written messages, attach files, send photos, etc.
We all use WhatsApp every day so it is one of the best alternatives to Skype if you are looking to make video calls with leisure friends or family, one-time video calls. It is not the best for the workplace because it is not comfortable not to have it available in a computer version. Also, the other drawback of WhatsApp is that group calls allow a maximum of four people. Of course, for your day to day or for individual video calls it may be the best option.
Zoom is not a new application but in 2020 it has become fashionable in order to telework since it offers the possibility of video calls with up to 100 participants, which makes it very interesting if you want to meet online with the whole family or if you want to meet your entire company in one conversation. Up to 100 free participant or even 1,000 participantsat the same time if you bet on the paid version. But with conditions: these group meetings have a maximum of 40 minutes per meeting, then you will have to recreate it again. If you want more minutes, you have to pay. It is focused from the point of view of “meetings” that a host can create and which is joined by other users who have a username and password that allows them to enter. Or you can add you contacts from the phonebook of the mobile phone.
It is not focused on the day to day and we do not recommend it if you are looking for alternatives to Skype to call your friends or your cousin. Yes it is a good option to give work talks, for meetings, for conferences or to teach students since they can connect without audio and simply listen to what you are saying. It also has many useful options that allow you to share files directly from Google Drive or Dropbox, share the screen or even access a perfect whiteboard to teach what you need through it.
Facebook is another of the best alternatives to Skype whether you are looking to make video calls as a free, cross-platform and message exchange tool. Among its main advantages we find that we can use it from our mobile phone or computer or tablet, making it more versatile than others on the list. Another main advantage is that you can add up to 50 people in a group conversation in video calls. But with a small inconvenience: of those fifty people there can only be six who are with the camera activated. As with Skype, the others will be able to speak or listen or see but they will not appear on the screen. Still, it is a highly recommended option because almost everyone has Facebook and you will not have to register in any other application for it
What is the downside? Beyond that only six appear on the screen, there may be other users who do not want to add certain people to the social network to make a video call. It is useful in cases of friends or family but not so much in the case of colleagues or to teach students. If you are looking for some leisure and with friends, it is a very interesting option that you can use from mobile or tablet applications and from the Facebook website.
Houseparty is another of the most popular Skype alternatives in 2020. Not as well-known as Google Hangouts or FaceTime, it becomes a favorite of many users during the coronavirus pandemic quarantine. Mainly downloaded by young people, HouseParty is an application that allows you to make group video calls with up to eight people and allows you to make closed calls (you choose the contacts) or make open calls that any friend joins .
It allows up to eight people and is available for iOS and Android. It is not intended for the business environment but for friends and leisure. So much so that the video call application itself includes games that you can play online with your friends and liven up the time: a classic Pictionary (Quick Dray), Who’s Who, a card game and a trivial version are the options. to play with your friends.
Instagram is not one of the best alternatives to Skype if you are looking for something complete, with many functions and cross-platform. If you want to talk to your friends, ok. You can create individual or group video calls from the private messages part of the photography application but you will have to do it yes or yes from your smartphone. And the second condition: they will have to have an account in the application. The maximum number of people is four and the functions are very limited although we recommend it if you are just looking for something for a few minutes and with friends.
Jitsi is an open source application that has also become one of the most popular video calling applications and one of the best alternatives to Skype for those who want to do group conferences. It allows up to fifty people simultaneously and the advantage is that you don’t even have to register to access the application. It also allows you to share the screen while you make the video call, which is ideal for group classes or telecommuting.
It is a program focused mainly on security and privacy since the conversations are encrypted. You can use it for video calls but also to send written messages as in the other applications on this list, or in almost all of them. It is compatible with Windows, Linux and Mac OS through the website and you only have to access it from the browser to use it.