While Skype has been a popular tool for people all over the world to stay connected with their family, friends, and loved ones, it’s not something that is always used, primarily because it requires both parties to be using the application at a specific time. In an effort to make sure that people are using a Microsoft product to stay connected in between those scheduled Skype calls, the company has come up with a fast and easy-to-use communication software dubbed “Skype Qik.”
What is Skype Qik
Skype Qik is basically a mobile messaging application that uses the Skype backbone and focuses on asynchronous video messaging – it lets you send short duration (42-second) videos to your friends. Microsoft says the idea behind the app is to cater to a section of mobile market that is moving away from scheduled, one-to-one communications.
Aside from the younger generation, Skype Qik is also aimed at those who are travelling or live in completely different time zones, where a traditional Skype call doesn’t make any sense. Despite being a part of the Skype family, Skype Qik is an independent application, which means that you don’t need to have Skype installed for the app to work.
If the name of the app rings a bell, this is because it’s derived from the name of the live video streaming startup Qik, which Skype acquired for $100 million back in 2012. Aside from the name, there is nothing in common between the two services, although some of Qik’s team worked on the new apps for Skype Qik, which is available only for Android, iOS, and Windows Phone.
Every video you share lasts exactly 2 weeks, and if you send a video message by mistake, or don’t like it, you can erase it from the chat, and it will disappear across all of your friend’s phones – whether it’s been watched it or not. In addition, if you don’t want to receive messages from someone, the app allows you to block contacts – a feature which is currently available only on Android and Windows Phone and will be available on iPhone in the coming months, acccording to the company.
There can be times when you want to reply to a video message but cannot record your video for some reason. For these kind of scenarios, you can also create what the company calls “Qik Fliks” – little 5 second pre-recorded videos that you can send with just a tap. The feature is currently available on Android and iPhone and is coming to Windows Phone in the coming months.
Inviting your friends to use the app is very easy – just send a Skype Qik video message to someone who isn’t using the app, and they’ll receive an SMS with instructions on how to download the app. After the download, they’ll be able to access the message.
While it’s a bit early to comment on whether Skype Qik will be successful or not, it definitely has some features that might catch the fancy of youth. The app is available worldwide in twenty-one languages and can be downloaded for free from the Google Play Store, Apple App Store, and Windows Phone Store, respectively.