However, this just reinforces the ideals that we will all require high-speed internet in our homes to stay connected to everything we run, or we’ll eventually be left in the dust. Unless we move out into the woods and group our own food. Or just move to Wyoming. Whichever.
Here’s another cool update from Google that came out this past week – Google calling! And this isn’t like Skype where you’re limited to where you can call, Google calls allows you to call cell phones, land lines, etc. Check it out here!
Call anywhere in the US and Canada for free and get low rates for other countries with this small plugin — right from within Gmail.
View a cool little video:
Skype has launched new monthly plans for international calls to landlines and cellphones, and is expected this week to launch a video chat feature. It says the plans, which cover 170 countries, give savings of up to 60 percent compared to Skype’s standard Pay As You Go rates. Subscription plans are available in 60-minute to unlimited packages, and there are one, three and 12-month calling subscriptions from $1.09 per month. They equate to rates as low as one cent per minute to almost any country.
To not make normal PC-to-PC users feel left out, Skype is also gearing up to release a new beta of its Windows software. Skype’s vice president and general manager of global consumer products, Neil Stevens, told CNET in a briefing that next week’s Skype beta will feature video conference calls for up to five callers. Right now video calling works between two people.
Nearly a year after the release of the 3.0 software update, a goliath amount of improvements, comes the latest update in fashionable mammoth form.
The announcement was made this morning in Cupertino at the Apple Campus (coincidentally, about 10 minutes from where I am right now, in the office), where Steve Jobs fielded Q&A from attendees. Among updates, we have the following, which is sure to make a huge impact:
- Multitasking. Long past due. However not everything will have multitask ability from the get-go. Mainly things that stream, such as Pandora and Skype, will remain open when you go back to the menu to take a phone call, write an e-mail, etc.
- Folders. Better categorization for your applications. For myself, I have 12 pages of applications (all free, hah!) on my iPhone, of which include 3 straight pages for various game applications. For future use, I will be able to create folders for these applications to reside in, and therefore require less scrolling from page to page to get to where I need to be.
- A unified mailbox. Multiple accounts updating a single inbox. While I don’t use my secondary or tertiary accounts much, I do find it troublesome to back out of the inbox, back out of the e-mail account, click on another account, and then click on that inbox to view the single e-mail that popped in. Rinse & repeat to get back to the inbox I mainly use. Now, that too is much more simplified.
- Bluetooth keyboard support. I cannot tell you how wonderful this will be. I posted (awhile back) a keyboard for the iPhone / iPod Touch that could be used, and this makes it so much nicer for lengthy e-mails and the like.
- 5x camera digital zoom. No more cropping and resizing photos to cut out the things I didn’t want in the photo. While it would be nice to have actual optical zoom, digital is much more practical in our small telephone devices.
- Spell check. Hopefully a few of my friends find this ability. ;)
These are among the list which I find to be the most useful.
Will videophone finally become a solid reality? Samsung, Panasonic, and LG are all adding a Skype application to some of their TVs coming out.
You have Skype on your computers and your mobile devices. You have high speed internet practically everywhere. Webcams around found on computers and laptops, video game consoles, etc. High resolution television sets are becoming the electronic standard in our living rooms. Why have we not already put these pieces of non-cutting-edge technology together?
Expect huge excitement over this when it releases. My Xbox already allows me to Facebook and Tweet on my 42″ plasma, as well as voice communicate over the headset using the camera (which I don’t have). This is one more step in the right direction to making the world a little closer for everyone.