Items tagged with Skype

Over the last few weeks, there has been an increasing amount of concern over what Apple, Amazon, and Google are doing with the voice commands and conversations that their respective digital assistants hear and record. All of those companies have employees or contractors who listen to the transcripts of commands issued to the digital assistants to see if they answered correctly and to improve the service. It's easy to forget that Microsoft operates in this digital assistant space as well, and a new report claims that its workers are eavesdropping on Skype chats and Cortana interactions. Word of Microsoft's policy comes from a Microsoft contractor who was able to provide Motherboard recordings... Read more...
Microsoft has completed beta testing of its screen sharing feature of Skype on mobile devices, and is now rolling it out to Android and iOS users at large. That is good news for anyone that uses Skype on a smartphone (or tablet), and depending on the need for such a feature, it could entice non-Skype users to give Microsoft's video and chat application a whirl. The screen sharing feature that is rolling out to mobile is the same one that was already being enjoyed by desktop users. Microsoft started beta testing screen sharing on Android and iOS just a couple of months ago, and is apparently pleased with the results. "Whether you have a last-minute meeting on the go, or your dad doesn’t... Read more...
Over the last few years, many consumers have complained that Microsoft has focused primarily on businesses. The company abandoned products like the Windows Phone and Microsoft Band Fitness Trackers, and has instead labored on its business applications, data, and AI. Microsoft recently stated that it would be working harder to attract consumers. A few recent job listings have hinted that the company plans to fulfill that promise, and Microsoft will likely release a 365 Consumer Subscription. Microsoft has posted job listings for a Microsoft 365 Consumer Subscription product manager and senior product manager. The responsibilities for both positions include understanding the needs of consumers... Read more...
If you’re a heavy user of the Skype messaging client, a feature that was first announced in mid-July is now finally rolling out to users: call recording. Call recording is a cloud-based feature that allows you to save precious moments with loved ones or have a recording of a conversation with coworkers during meetings for future reference.  The recording feature is not just limited to audio calls, and extends to video calls as well. And just so that no one is surprised after the fact that a call was recorded, each call participant is notified when someone starts a recording.  Initiating a recording is relatively simple from within Skype, and boils down to just a two... Read more...
Last summer Skype announced with some fanfare that it had overhauled its design. The design was very similar to Snapchat, and many Skype users didn’t like the change. Skype has now announced that after more than a year on the new design, it is changing back to a much simpler interface. Skype is also ditching its interpretation of Snapchat stories called Highlights. w Highlights allowed users on a mobile device to swipe up to open the smartphone camera where they could take a photo or record video to share. They were then able to decorate the media with text or stickers and shared with Skype users, groups, or posted to the app's Highlights section. Skype has faced the harsh reality that... Read more...
Microsoft seems intent on allowing you to access all the things from your Android device on your Windows computer. The biggest of these features has been the much talked about Your Phone app that is in testing and will be part of Redstone 5 build 1809. Your Phone will mirror content like recent Android photos over to your desktop to prevent users from having to email images to themselves. Eventually, it will allow users to text and answer calls directly on the PC. As Windows and Android users are waiting to get full Your Phone availability, Microsoft is also talking up another way to share between your Android device and your PC or Mac in the form of a new feature coming for Skype. The Skype... Read more...
Back in mid-July, Microsoft added a new cross-platform call recording feature to its Skype chat client and announced that its desktop client would be receiving a complete UI overhaul with a design aesthetic that more closely aligned with the mobile client. "Everything about this new version, from the underlying performance improvements to the usability enhancements, is designed to keep you connected to the people who matter most," wrote Microsoft at the time. "We built Skype version 8.0 based on feedback from our community—adding exciting new features while ensuring it’s simple to use with the same familiar interface of Skype version 7.0." Microsoft indicated that users of the current... Read more...
Microsoft has big plans in store for its Skype messaging/video conferencing client. The company just confirmed that it will add integrated call recording to the popular cross-platform client starting later this month. This won't be a case in which voice and video recordings are stored on your computer’s hard drive/SSD or your smartphone's internal storage: it will be a fully cloud-based solution. That means you will be able to access the cloud recordings from any device at any time (as long as you have an internet connection). "As soon as you start recording, everyone in the call is notified that the call is being recorded—so there are no surprises," writes the Skype team in a blog... Read more...
Your mama, and now Microsoft, wants you to watch your mouth. Microsoft "may stop providing Services" or "close your Microsoft account" if you "publicly display or use the Services to share inappropriate content or material". "Offensive language" was listed as potentially inappropriate content. The new services agreement was posted this month and will go into effect Tuesday, May 1st for U.S. users.  The service agreement applies to a number of Microsoft services such as Bing, Cortana MSN.com, Office, Skype, and Xbox Live. If one's Microsoft services are cancelled, either by themselves or by Microsoft, they will lose their licenses and other products they have acquired. They will no longer... Read more...
Hewlett-Packard has unveiled a new device for virtual meetings and conferences that is called the Elite Slice for Meeting Rooms G2 with Skype Room Systems (that's a mouthful) along with a new 43-inch diagonal 4K conferencing display. The Slice integrates all the voice, video, and data capability needed for real-time collaboration into one device. The SRS version of the device also enables high-quality audio and video via Skype for Business. "Online collaboration continues to fuel growth around the globe, and we are pleased that HP Inc. is bringing the next generation of Skype Room Systems solution to market," said Bob Davis, corporate vice president, Microsoft. "The easy-to-deploy and use... Read more...
Microsoft has announced that it has tweaked Skype to optimize the messaging app to work more efficiently on older Android devices; specifically those running Android 4.0.3 to 5.1. The update started to roll out in the last few days and requires less storage space and has lighter memory consumption to improve overall performance. Microsoft says that the less stringent requirements means a faster app and better audio and video quality for lower-end devices. The updated app will also have better performance in "challenging" network conditions. Essentially this means on old devices running on networks that aren’t as reliable as users might like. Microsoft wrote, "In the coming weeks, the update... Read more...
Microsoft has confirmed a nasty flaw in Skype that could allow nefarious individuals to gain complete access the OS with system-level privileges on affected machines. To make the issue even worse, Microsoft knows the flaw is there and exploitable, but has no plans for an immediate fix because it would require too much work. The hack was discovered by security researcher Stefan Kanthak and according to him, the Skype update installer can be exploited with a DLL hijacking technique allowing the application to be fooled into drawing malicious code rather than the correct library the app wants. The exploit would allow the hacker to download the malicious DLL and place it into a user-accessible... Read more...
Skype has announced something that some users have wanted for a long time: end-to-end encryption for conversations. Skype Insiders can preview the new encryption feature right now, and it's called Private Conversations. With these conversations, end-to-end encryption for audio calls, text messages, images, audio files, and videos are now supported.  Private Conversations uses industry standard Signal Protocol by Open Whisper Systems. When you participate in one of the private sessions, that chat is hidden in notifications to keep what you share private. Microsoft's Ellen Kilbourne wrote, "Give it a try by selecting "New Private Conversation" from the compose menu or from the recipient’s... Read more...
Microsoft has announced new tech that is available in your chat window that leverages the Cortana intelligent digital assistant. Cortana is available in Skype and is designed to help you with details to support the conversations you have every day.  This means if you ask someone to go to the movies with you, it will give you access to movie times. If someone asks you to remember to do something, Cortana will offer to set a reminder on your phone. Cortana can also suggest smart replies so you can respond to messages faster and more easily, without having to type. The reminders that Cortana sets for you can be received on all devices you own with Cortana enabled. Microsoft has also made its... Read more...
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