Skype 2.0 Brings Video Calls to Linux

Mar 14, 2008

Skype, the free VoIP software, has left beta status and advanced to stable Version 2.0.

The beta version released in November last year was the first to offer Linux users video calls, given appropriate hardware.

Since the release of the initial beta version, the Skype developers have added a whole bunch of new features to the software, including a login function for the command line ("--pipelogin"), improved handling of incoming and outgoing calls using a click-and-hold button, and translations into various languages. The stable version adds a call cost per minute counter for calls to international phone networks (SkypeOut).

The new version also adds more privacy, giving users the ability to decide whether to automatically accept calls. The Release Notes have a full list of changes.

The proprietary Skype software can workaround most firewalls and NAT routers. The software supports several voice codes (SVOPC, AMR-WB, G.729, G.711); free telephony is available between Skype users. Calls to international phone networks are billed. Besides VoIP, Skype also provides Instant Messaging functionality.

The stable Skype 2.0 for Linux is available for downloading for all major Linux distributions as of now.

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