Connect with loved ones from a distance with Skype!
You communicate with your distant and close family members via phone call and email all of the time, but have you considered video chatting? Skype, for example, is a convenient, easy-to-use program that lets you connect with your loved ones using the camera on your computer, tablet or smartphone.
Skype is especially useful for talking to family members and friends from long distances. It's a more intimate - and more fun - way to connect and stay in touch.
Interested in trying Skype? Here's our step-by-step guide on how to download, use and navigate the application:
Step 1: Download the software
Depending on which device you plan to use, you'll download a specific version of Skype. To download for your computer, click one of the following links:
If you plan on using Skype on your smartphone, click here to get the app for your specific device. For tablets, click here.
Step 2: Create your username
Come up with a username and password you can easily remember. Then, share your name with your family and friends so they're ready to receive your calls and reach out to you on their own.
Step 3: Set up your contact list
Once you've given out your Skype username, ask your loved ones for their usernames. You can easily add them after logging on by clicking the Contacts tab on the left hand side, then the "Add Contact" button in the top right-hand corner.
Step 4: Select your call type
After creating your contact list, you'll be ready to make your first Skype call. Select a family member or friend to call by clicking on his or her picture. You'll then see a series of buttons and you'll decide which kind of call you'd like to make. You can choose between:
- Video calls - Click the video button if you want to communicate face-to-face.
- Phone calls - Click the phone button if you want to make a call without using the webcam.
You'll notice a "+" button as well, which allows you to add other loved ones to the conversation. This is especially convenient when you're trying to get the whole family together on the call!
Step 5: Make sure you're connected
If you've made the call and you can't see or hear the other person, there might be an issue with the connection. Click the call quality icon to make sure you and your loved one have strong enough internet connection to interact.
Step 6: Talk for as long as you want!
Once the connection is strong you'll have a full screen of his or her picture and a small square of your own in the bottom right corner. Now you can talk the day away! Skype makes connecting with your loved ones a simple task, regardless of the distance.
Step 7: End the call
Once you've finished the call, simply press the red handset icon to end the conversation and close out of the program.