In case you missed the news, we recently released a feature that might change how you think about Skype. Up until now, video on Skype has always been something that is shared live between two or more people. This is what’s called a synchronous method of communication.
With Skype for Windows desktop 6.5 we added another, asynchronous, form of communicating with your friends and loved ones using video. You can now record video messages to send to your friends which they can play and re-play whenever they like.
Today I’m not going to give you any tips on how to send video messages, that information is well covered on the Skype support site. There you will find how to send video messages on Skype for Windows, Windows 8, Mac, Android and iOS. In this article I’d like to tell you some of the ways I’ll be using video messaging and explain how it will get you thinking about Skype in a whole new way.
Reminders for others
There are two types of reminders for others that I can imagine benefitting from video messages; the personal and the practical.
What I mean by personal reminders is, simply, reminders to others that you exist and are thinking of them. Skype video calls are a great way to stay together when distance drives you apart, but sometimes time differences and other factors might make them difficult to coordinate. It could also be that busy schedules, instead of time differences are what’s keeping you from jumping on a call together. Whatever the case may be, wouldn’t it be great to have a little video reminder of someone dear to you which you could play and reply at any time?
When I say practical reminders I’m talking about reminders like “Don’t forget to get some milk”, “Don’t forget it’s your parents’ anniversary”. Sure, you could send these kind of reminders by IM but wouldn’t it be nice to add a personal video touch to your message?
Reminders for yourself
Now this may just be me, but my Skype chat history is pretty much an external memory device for me. I often forget which website I saw an interesting article on, which folder I saved that slide deck in or what that witty quote was that someone sent me last week. But I almost always remember who sent those things to me and can often find them again by looking through my chat history with that person.
I have no doubt that video messages are going to become a part of this behavior for me too. Sometimes it’s easier to explain something with five seconds of video than with half a dozen text messages back and forth.
The ultimate wish-you-were-here postcard
We’ve all done it; taken a bit of guilty pleasure in an exotic vacation or an extravagant trip by showing off to those who couldn’t go. With video messaging via Skype you won’t just be able to show off the palm trees though, you can show off how they sway gently in the wind and the sound of the turquoise waves lapping the shore…. Darn, now I’ve made myself want to book a vacation.
The great thing is you can record the video message on your mobile while offline and tap send and the message will go through when you’re next online.
Capturing every moment of a new member of the family
I just became an uncle recently and whenever I hang out with my nephew he does loads of cute things that I want to share with his grandparents, but they’re always on the spur of the moment. Using video messages I can record his antics and send them on so they can be viewed whenever. I know I could also take pictures, but I’ve got to include the little gurgle sounds he makes! I’m sure all of my friends on Facebook are also glad that I can send the video directly to his grandparents too; I’ve already filled up their newsfeeds enough with pictures and videos of the baby boy.
These are just some of the ways that video messages in Skype are going to be great for getting your message across. But then again Skype users are always finding great new ways to use Skype that we hadn’t even thought of. If you have a great idea for a video message why not come tell us about it on the Skype Community?