High Quality Video goes public with Skype 3.6 for Windows
Just as water vapor turns into ice crystals in Northern parts of the Northern Hemisphere, we’re getting better tools to help get things done without having to leave the house (or office). Skype today released the public version of Skype 3.6 for Windows, with major under-the-hood changes that focus on video. High Quality Video, to be precise*.
There are two ways to describe what we’ve done. You could say the video window on Skype has grown to 640×480 pixels, delivering up to 30 frames per second. Or, if you prefer plain English, you can now begin to enjoy free High Quality Video calls that are sharper, smoother and better than anything you’ve seen on Skype before.
To experience free High Quality Video, this is what both sides of the conversation will need:
Skype 3.6 for Windows
* a Logitech webcam that has been optimized and certified for High Quality Video (the Logitech QuickCam Pro 9000, the Logitech QuickCam Pro for Notebooks or the Logitech QuickCam Sphere AF (Logitech QuickCam Orbit AF in the U.S.)
* Logitech QuickCam software, version 11.5
* a dual-core PC
* a broadband internet connection (384 kbps and above).
For more, please see the High Quality Video page on the Skype website.
The three webcams are already available worldwide, in retail as well as the Skype web store. In Europe, the Skype shop has a special offer for the webcams. The Logitech QuickCam Pro 9000 or the Logitech QuickCam Pro for Notebooks will normally cost €99.99, but if you head for the Skype webstore, you’ll also get a free headset, free shipping, and SkypeOut credit worth up to three hours of calls to landlines and mobiles. In the US, Skype offers a $20 rebate on either of these products ($99.99 before the rebate).
*If this sounds familiar, it should – the more adventurous among you have been able to play with High Quality Video as part of the beta version of Skype 3.6 for Windows since October 10. You may also have read about Skype’s collaboration with Logitech to help make High Quality Video a reality.