With millions of people now working from home during the pandemic, Skype usage has gone up considerably. If you, too, are using the video conferencing app for professional purposes all day every day, then you might be looking for ways to help you enhance your productivity. In this article, we take a look at a series of Skype tips and tricks to get more out of it.
If you’re just getting started with Skype, maybe you would prefer to learn all about setting up video conferencing in the app first. Once you’ve mastered using this core function, you can continue to uncover more useful Skype tricks and features that will make life easier for you.
1. Set Up a Caller ID
With Skype, users can call mobile or landline numbers (in exchange for a fee). If you want your collaborators to know it’s you who’s calling, you should be aware that it’s possible to set a Skype caller ID (caller identification). The feature is free to set up and use.
1. Open Skype on your computer or Android.
2. Click on Settings.
3. Find and select Calling.
4. Turn on the Caller ID toggle.
5. Select your country from the drop-down list.
6. Enter the mobile number in the box that appears and then click Save.
Once you’ve completed these steps, you should receive a verification code on your smartphone, which you need to input back to Skype for the feature to become active.
2. Forward a Call
In order to make sure you’ll never miss an important call, Skype allows users to set up call forwarding. You can activate this feature in Skype for desktop or Android by following the exact steps outlined above and selecting the “Call forwarding and voicemail option” in Calling.
Here you will need to set the time interval following which you want the calls to be forwarded to you. Users have three options to choose from, including forwarding to voicemail or another Skype account.
The last one is to a mobile or landline number. If you opt for this, you need to select your country/region and then input the number you want the calls to be redirected to.
3. Add Subtitles During Calls
For those who constantly make phone calls internationally and want to make sure they understand everything that is said, the app offers some assistance in this direction.
Skype for desktop and Android allows you to enable subtitles during calls, so you can read the words that are spoken during an audio or video call.
To do so you need to open “Settings -> Calling -> Call subtitles.” Here, toggle on the “Show subtitles for all calls” option. But before proceeding to the actual call, double-check you’ve selected the correct “Spoken language.”
4. Configure Keyboard Shortcuts
Keyboard shortcuts make using Skype on desktop much easier. To check out the list of shortcuts, you can use go to “Settings -> General -> Keyboard Shortcuts.”
Alternatively, from the contact window, simply tap on the three-dot menu in the upper-right corner and select “Keyboard shortcuts.”
Here you’ll find a list of all the shortcuts available to use. For example, to quickly take a snapshot during a video call, press Ctrl + S. Additionally, you can start a new conversation by pressing Ctrl + N. Make sure you go through the whole list, as these shortcuts are real time-savers.
5. Save Space on Your Screen
Make a bit of space on your PC’s screen by enabling Split view mode. This option splits the contact and conversation windows, which can then be placed anywhere on the screen. To do so, open Skype on your PC and tap on the three-dot menu located in the top-right corner of the contact screen.
Select “Enable split view mode” and minimize the contact window to free up space on your screen. Now use keyboard shortcuts to avoid bringing up the Contacts window again.
6. Turn on Dark Mode
The most popular Android apps out there all offer the option to switch to Dark Mode, and Skype is no different. If you want to make the switch to the shadowy side yourself, here’s how to do it:
1. Open the Skype app.
2. Tap on Settings.
3. Go to Appearance.
4. Under Modes, select the Dark theme.
From there you can customize the app’s look further, such as choosing which color your speech bubbles will be and enabling a “High contrast dark mode” for an even more striking effect.
7. Change the Background Quickly
If you have an important video call coming up, but you didn’t have the time to tidy up your room, you can easily set a custom background that will hide the mess you don’t want anyone to see.
On your desktop computer go to “Settings -> Audio & Video -> Choose background.” There are a number of default backgrounds to choose from here, but if you’d like to use one of your own images, you can do so by clicking on the “+” button and uploading it.
8. Easily Share Contacts
Do you need to quickly share some contact details with someone? It’s quite simple to do so with a few easy clicks either on Android or desktop. For starters, bring up the chat window of the person you want to share information with.
Click on the “+” button on the left side of the chat box. Next, select the contact option from the pop-up menu. A new screen will appear showing all your contacts. Select those you want to send by ticking their respective boxes.
On your PC, you will be able to do that by clicking the second button located on the right side of the chat box, then selecting the Contacts you want to share.
While the above Skype tricks are useful, you may not want to use Skype instead. Find out some of the best Skype alternatives here. Additionally, our Skpe vs. Zoom comparison will help you decide if you will be better off switching to a different app.