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Skype for Android updating with sign-out improvement

Bug fixes also in first update following major design overhaul We couldn't blame you for being a little confused as to how you're meant to sign out of the new Skype for Android. The messaging app received a major update last week with a brand new UI, and as a side-effect, the sign-out option —...
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How to sign out of the new Skype 4.0 for Android

Skype has done fine work with its new Version 4.0 on Android, bringing about some badly needed performance improvements as well as a redesign. But in doing so, it's buried the sign-out button, as well as the settings — two things that absolutely need to be in the top level of the user interface....
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Skype 4.0 for Android launches - 'rebuilt from the ground up'

Messaging platform celebrates 100 million Android installs with all-new app Skype for Android is getting a major update today, bringing the app up to version 4.0 with a major redesign. The app, which Skype says recently passed 100 million installs, has been completely redesigned to be more...

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Skype updated with 'aggressive battery savings,' disables group chat push notifications

Battery life bug tied to camera access in KitKat also fixed One of the big issues with Skype on mobile devices, battery life, is expected to be improved dramatically today with the latest update to the Android app. According to Skype, after installing version 4.7 of the app you should be able to...
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Skype says improved chat experience is coming

Skype this morning in a blog post addressed what may be our biggest complaint with the service — the clunky experience that is chat on mobile. Sync is, well, bad, push notifications are intermittent — basically not good all around. But here's the deal: We know that as users have started using...
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Skype updated with more tablet-only features

Picture-in-picture display and fast zooming in your contact list come in Skype 4.5 Microsoft's Skype application has undergone another big change, and version 4.5 is headed to Google Play. Like the last major update, this focuses on tablet design. Included are the bug and crash fixes and support...

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Having lots of friends that use a variation of IM protocols sometimes makes it rather difficult to keep track of everyone. Often times it means installing numerous apps and switching between them which not exactly the best solution for everyone. For this problem, IM+ exists and helps gather all your instant messaging clients into one robust application. Most recently, they've update IM+ to v4.1.5 and as such have included a lot of bug fixes and new features:

  • VKontakte and Yandex IM networks added (Cheers to our users from Russia!)
  • New splendid emoticons
  • Integration with Android Address Book
  • New Compact Mode UI to fit smaller displays
  • Ability to disable notifications in status bar
  • DND status
  • Improved IM+ Toast alerts
  • Japanese localization
  • Fixed fast battery draining //IM+ free
  • Many bugfixes and performance optimizations

IM+ comes in two versions, a free ad-supported version and a pro version ($9.99). Both are available now in the Android Market. If you're in need of an app likes this, you'll find the download link after the break.

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In a news conference today, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerburg unveiled his vision for the next five years of Facebook, and announced a few new features to the popular social networking platform that might look familiar to those of you lucky enough to be using Google+

The biggest announcement is that soon you can now have a video chat with your Facebook friends directly from chat.  Both of you will have to download and install the plugin first, but once you do, a face to face chat is just a button away.  Unlike the Google+ Hangout feature, Facebook chat is limited to one-on-one video.

The second major feature is the addition of group text chat.  Previously, only members of a Facebook group would be able to create a group chat, but now users will be able to invite whoever they want to the chat, similar to the Huddle feature in Google+ on mobile devices, or Google Talk group chat in Gmail.

Lastly, Facebook will give their chat system a much-needed facelift, so it's easier to tell who's online to chat.  Facebook Chat will also be coded to take advantage to the extra screen space on widescreen monitors, moving your Chat list off to the side and out of the pop-up menu.

When asked about the Facebook mobile app, Mark Zuckerburg said the new group chat will already work with mobile devices, but that they haven't finished porting over video chat at this time, saying “These are mostly web features for now.” 

All of these features will roll out to web users in the "coming weeks" but if you're feeling adventurous, the video chat can be installed today via a link in their blog. 

Source: Facebook

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Yesterday we saw the Skype app received quite a large update that brought an enhanced interface to everyone, but video calling to only a few select devices. The Google Nexus S was included, but not its Wimax cousin on Sprint. But Skype just tweeted that they have added the Nexus S 4G. While we would sure like to see more devices, it is a start, and at least we know they are working on it behind the scenes still.

Source: Twitter: Thanks, John!

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Fire up Skype today, and you'll be greeted with a nicely redesigned user interface, as well as the ability to use SMS from Skype. But that's not the big feature the internet calling giant is really pimping. Video calling is finally officially here -- but only for a select few phones. Yeah, there's that leaked build that's been out for months. But if you've got any of the following phones (and this is going to hurt for most of us here in the U.S.), you can now officially make video calls. The support phones are:

  • HTC Desire S
  • Sony Ericsson Xperia Neo
  • Sony Ericsson Xperia Pro
  • Google Nexus S

Not exactly a comprehensive list, but things have to start somewhere, we suppose. Quick video and download links are after the break.

More: Skype

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Looks like the continued wait for the latest HTC ThunderBolt software update -- the one that everybody initially thought would just be to fix those blasted reboots -- may be well worth the wait. We'd heard that the more improvements were in the works as, meanwhile, work has continued on new radios. And if this feature list is any indication, we're about to see some official Gingerbread love, folks. Here's the rundown:

  • Android 2.3.4 Gingerbread.
  • Google Talk video chat (making it only the third phone to get it)
  • Skype video (at long last)
  • Sense 2.1
  • Enhanced aGPS
  • Amazon Appstore
  • Download Manager
  • Verizon Phone Finder
  • MyVerizon

June 30 is the rumored date for the software push, but you know how those things go. It lines up with the news we broke a couple weeks ago, stating an update was coming in the second half of June. But seeing as how there are 30 days in June, that could be what we call a "CYA date." And Verizon recently said no date had been scheduled, after rumors of June 15 fell flat. We'll just have to see.

Anyhoo. Gingerbread. Skype video. Sense 2.1. Oh, and hopefully an end to all those reboots. Now if only someone could do a little something more about battery life.

Source: Android and Me; More: HTC ThunderBolt Forums

Update: A lot of your are noting the misspellings and use of "gTalk" and are of the opinion that this is fake. Might well be. You'd have to ask Android and Me's "Verizon Insider" -- it's their source, not ours. But we will say we've seen some fat fingers at Verizon before. Anybody remember this one?

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We've been all over the LG Optimus Black in the past -- we gave it a full run through in our review but we now know that it will be making its way to Telus in Canada. Telus has done some special customization with their release though -- they've managed to team up with Skype to offer a special "Skype edition".

Of course, all that really breaks down to is that Skype comes pre-loaded and you can charge Skype credits right to your TELUS account but still -- that's pretty cool in our books. As it stands right now, Telus hasn't issued a date for release but they now have the splash page up announcing the device, which we take as a good sign that it will be sooner rather than later.

Source: Telus

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And there you have it: Microsoft put out the press release this morning that it indeed is buying Skype, the leading video and VoIP client. The price? $8.5 billion. (We'll let that sink in for a minute.) The reason?

The acquisition will increase the accessibility of real-time video and voice communications, bringing benefits to both consumers and enterprise users and generating significant new business and revenue opportunities. The combination will extend Skype’s world-class brand and the reach of its networked platform, while enhancing Microsoft’s existing portfolio of real-time communications products and services.

Now before you freak out and worry that in order to use Skype in the future you'll have to jump to Windows Phone 7 or sell your soul to Bing or something, Microsoft in the press release ensures us that Skype will continue to be supported on other platforms. Granted, it doesn't say which platforms.

Skype will support Microsoft devices like Xbox and Kinect, Windows Phone and a wide array of Windows devices, and Microsoft will connect Skype users with Lync, Outlook, Xbox Live and other communities. Microsoft will continue to invest in and support Skype clients on non-Microsoft platforms.

So what's that mean for the future of Skype on Android? Hopefully business as usual. We'll just have to see.

Source: Microsoft

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If Google was hoping to control all the hallway chatter at this year's Google IO, well, it looks like they've lost that bid. Perhaps, in fact, they've lost two, as the WSJ is reporting that Microsoft is about to close a deal to acquire Skype for a cool seven billion dollars. The deal apparently isn't quite finalized yet, but if it goes through it's going to leave more questions than answers for the Voice Over IP software.

Six months after Skype freed itself from the confines of Verizon exclusivity for mobile phones in the US, it's become a fairly popular platform for Android. Will Microsoft allow it to continue on Android or any of the myriad other platforms Skype supports? We're hoping and assuming yes - but the news itself is crazy enough that more craziness could well ensue. Stay tuned for what's sure to be a wild ride.

Update: Looks like it is a done deal, as reported by All Things D. Press release suggested for tomorrow morning.

Source: WSJ; via TiPb

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Fear not, people of Earth. Your weeklong national Skype nightmare is over. The essential communications app has plugged that security hole we didn't actually sweat too much over -- the one where some of your data, and your contacts data, was stored insecurely. And to show there are no hard feelings, tucked into this morning's update is "Calling over your 3G connection is available worldwide - now including the US."  This opens up 3G calling to everyone, not just Verizon customers like we've seen so far.

Now doesn't that make you feel better? Snag the update in the Android Market, and we've got download links after the break.

Update: And Skype's chimed in, saying on its security blog:

We have had no reported examples of any 3rd party malicious application misusing information from the Skype directory on Android devices and will continue to monitor closely. Please rest assured that we do take your privacy and security very seriously and we sincerely apologise for any concern this issue may have caused.

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Skype Profile info left vulnerable to malicious applications

Skype on Friday issued a public response to a security issue uncovered recently that leaves some profile and message information open and vulnerable to malicious applications. Uncovered by Android Police, the vulnerability deals with the way the Skype Android application stores some personal information, making your profile information -- and your Skype contacts' profile information (among other bits of Skype data) -- easily found and scraped by any application that wants to. Skype, on its blog, has said:

It has been brought to our attention that, were you to install a malicious third-party application onto your Android device, then it could access the locally stored Skype for Android files.

These files include cached profile information and instant messages. We take your privacy very seriously and are working quickly to protect you from this vulnerability, including securing the file permissions on the Skype for Android application.

To protect your personal information, we advise users to take care in selecting which applications to download and install onto their device.

That's a fairly serious hole, and it's good that it was discovered, reported and is being fixed. So have you been in any danger all this time? Possibly, but you would have had to have installed a malicious application that knew to run this exploit in the first place. Chances of that are fairly low, but not out of the question. And it's important to remember that we're talking about Skype data, not the full contacts list on your phone. That doesn't mean it's not a gaping hole that needs to be closed; but neither are we worried about the sky falling. Be careful what you download, folks. [Skype, Android Police]

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Although the HTC Thunderbolt was supposed to of have launched with it -- it didn't. And although HTC and Verizon tried to hide the fact it ever existed -- it didn't work. Skype Video has now leaked out for all Verizon HTC Thunderbolt users. No telling how long it will work for once Skype and Verizon catch on, or if they'll even care enough to bother shutting it down but we do know it will only work on the Thunderbolt so, don't bother trying it on anything else at this point.

Phil took it for a ride over 3G and Wifi. It works over the former and works pretty well over the later, but doesn't seem to do much for the person you're talking to. (Hi, Jerry!) Remember that this is leaked and unofficial software, so consider yourselves warned. Download links are at the source link, if you're the brave type. [Droid-Life] Thanks, 0mie!

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We can't point the finger at anyone in particular for Skype being pulled from the HTC Thunderbolt before release, but we can have a chuckle at how this particular SNAFU is getting fixed in some Verizon retail locations.  Above is a picture of the stand-up display for the Thunderbolt as it reads now.  Notice that Skype is featured on this one.  Rather than pull the displays, stores are getting stickers to cover the text that tout DLNA instead. 

Just goes to show that everyone thought Skype was coming at launch.  We do have to give credit where it's due -- nice work keeping things green and not wasting a few hundred pounds of cardboard Verizon.  Thanks to you know who!

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Today, along with announcing their recent acquisition of Qik, Skype has also announced that they plan to bring video calling to a wide variety of 4G Android devices on Verizon. It has become obvious across mobile platforms that video calling is a feature that is in high demand, and Verizon and Skype wanted to ensure that they were not left behind with this; and to make sure they utilized the front and rear facing cameras to the max. Currently they expect this feature to be usable mid-2011, so while unfortunately not yet available, it is on its way!

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Qik, the company behind video conferencing on the HTC Evo 4G, and many other mobile devices, has been acquired by video and voice over IP giant, Skype. Tony Bates, the CEO of Skype, has posted the announcement on the company's blog.

"Skype and Qik share a common purpose of enriching communications with video, and the acquisition of Qik will help to accelerate our leadership in video by adding recording, sharing and storing capabilities to our product portfolio" said the CEO.

No word on how much the acquisition cost and when the two will officially join forces. We'll keep you posted as this week's CES plays out. [Skype]

Update: Mashable has confirmed that Qik has been purchased for $100 million bucks.

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If you're keeping an eye on your storage space and move as many apps as possible to the SD card, note that the Skype Android app has been updated for that very reason. You're not going to save too much space -- its less than 1 megabyte -- but every little bit helps, right? Download link's after the break if you need it. (And, yes, you have to have Froyo to move apps to the SD card. That hasn't changed.) Thanks to everyone who sent this in!

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Skype -- which recently ditched its Verizon Wireless exclusivity -- is scheduled to receive a rather substantial update today.  Although the Skype Garage says Skype 1.0.1 should already be live in the market, it's not, but it probably will be very soon.  And you can bet this post will be updated once it is.

Update:  It has been pointed out by one of our commenters that Skype version 1.0.0.614 actually is Skype version 1.0.1.

In addition to support for QVGA devices, Skype 1.0.1 also adds support for a hardware back key, which has been designed to make Skype a little easier on your battery.  Skype 1.0.1 also boasts improved login stability, reduced application size, and more.  Download links and a full list of 1.0.1 enhancements after the break.

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Verizon is set to launch the Galaxy Tab on Nov. 11 for $599. If the price didn't shock you, this news might. A leaked Verizon training document states that the Skype, NFL Mobile, and VCAST apps won't be available at launch. While most of you couldn't care less about VCAST, it not being available on Day 1 is a pretty big deal for Verizon. Its also a bit odd that the NFL app won't be ready, too. Especially since Verizon recently upgraded its NFL app a few months ago. Click the source to view the rest of the shots. [Engadget]

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Look what happens when you release Skype to the masses. They go ahead and change it so anyone can make calls over 3G. The app once exclusive to Verizon customers only, went live the other day for any Android user running Android 2.1 and above. 

User xeudoxus at DroidForums decided he didn't like the idea of a WiFi only Skype app. So, he went ahead and well -- fixed it. Now, whether this is the most ethical or even legal change to an app, we're not quite sure. If you're brave enough to give it a shot (and don't mind a little gray-market software), give it a shot. [DroidForums]

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Late last month Fring announced fringOut calling -- cheap calls to regular telephone numbers from the Android client. And it's now available (coincidentally on the same day Skype opened up to the rest of Android) in an updated Android app. FringOut allows you to call phones worldwide for as low as 1 cent a minute. Not only does that make their pricing extremely competitive, it also makes it so reasonable that it's hard to justify passing up a deal like that up. Of course, if only Fring and Skype would kiss and make up, it'd make this a much more interesting story.

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Once upon a time there as a little rumor that Skype was going to shed its exclusivity with Verizon and once again be available to everyone else. Friends, that day has come. Chat and call all you want. It's cool. Free Skype to Skype calls. Call internationally for cheap. IM your friends. One caveat here is that calls have to be made over Wifi in the United States, but that's not the worst thing in the world.

So let's raise a glass to the death of another exclusive agreement that shut out more users than it included, and get your download on after the break. Thanks to everyone who sent this in!

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