Friday, December 4, 2009

Post 38: The Skype Movement and Future of Communication

I read a very interesting article about Skype the other day. I provided a link below so that people can reference it and know what I am talking about.

I am a huge user and advocate for Skype. I can look (and listen) in pride and happiness as my girlfriend, who came from and grew up in the Czech Republic, can talk and see her parents for free using this program. With the world of communication shrinking and the Global Village becoming a reality years ago (thanks to Internet) we are finding many ways to communicate cheaper and easier than ever before. One such ways is through the program Skype. It allows you to not only quickly make a voice call with better quality than that of a telephone, but it also grants you to see each other via the use of webcams, as well as granting you the ability to transfer files, play games, etc all at the same time for FREE! That last word is one of the biggest reasons why this program has been sought after for years and why, despite some legal hiccups here and there, it has come out on top as one of the best ways to communicate; and average consumers are not the only people to have recognized this. It is becoming much more relevant in businesses as well.
Stefan Öberg makes this case in his article Skype for Business where an increasing number of business owners and employees use the Skype program on a regular basis and the numbers don’t lie. 95% of businesses say they are saving money, 80% say they are seeing increased productivity, 70% say they are using it while traveling for business and 62% say they communicate better with customers using it. These numbers are only expected to grow as time goes on and it’s not without wonder: it’s a free, clean, small, powerful communication tool widely accessible with anyone with internet, a computer, and a simple headset (or webcam if you want video).
Its my personal opinion that in time, the preferred way of communicating over the internet will not be typing but by voice/picture communication. It’s already happening with the ability to attach voice messages, pictures, or video in emails. Even popular programs such as AOL Instant Messenger, Yahoo Messenger, MSN Messenger, and ICQ are trying to directly compete with Skype by offering their services with voice and video. With so much interest on these programs and the voice/video services (especially being free) we may start to see a crumbling of the telephone industry and if they are not careful and do not embrace the internet as a source of communication that they can benefit from they may find themselves in the same situation as the newspapers are facing these days. It’s only a matter of time, and popularity…

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