Pinterest Stumbleupon Whatsapp
Advertisement

For a long time, Skype was the world leader when it came to VoIP apps. It was so popular, in fact, that “Skyping” became a verb. But with so many complaints of low quality calls, too many crashes, and a general distrust of Microsoft, for many, Skype lost its appeal, despite its recent overhauls Skype 5.0 Gets a Complete Overhaul for the iPhone Skype 5.0 Gets a Complete Overhaul for the iPhone Skype has a new version for the iPhone, redesigned from the ground up and packed with features. Skype 5.0 for iPhone looks and feels like the Android and Windows Phone apps, yet customized to fit... Read More .

Since Skype’s heyday, however, many other apps have launched that enable you to call others from your devices. If you’re fed up with Skype then, you might want to try these alternatives.

For something much simpler than Skype, a service like Appear.in might be for you. If you want something with even more features, try out Viber. And then there are all the options in between.

1. Google Hangouts (Web, Android, iOS)

A direct competitor to Skype, offering free user-to-user calls and (mostly) free calls within the U.S. and Canada.

Since its launch just a few short years ago, Google Hangouts has rapidly grown to rival Skype in terms of user numbers while, according to many, surpassing Skype’s call quality.

Advertisement

While you could use Hangouts as just another messaging app, that’s the last thing we need. It’s first-and-foremost a way for you to voice and video call up to 10 contacts (simultaneously) on iOS, and Android. The regular Google Hangouts Web app Google Finally Made a Hangouts Web App & It's Worth It Google Finally Made a Hangouts Web App & It's Worth It For the longest time, Hangouts on desktop was a nightmare. Now, it has got a major update on the web in the form of an all new dedicated web app. Read More is pretty impressive, too. On your smartphone, this works over data (or Wi-Fi if you’re connected), so calls over Hangouts do not use any of your included minutes.

The contacts that Google Hangouts adds to your account can be both from your phone contacts, and your email contacts. If those contacts are Google Hangout users, you can call them entirely for free. You can call landlines and mobiles from Hangouts, too.

Almost all calls to Canada and the US are entirely free from any country where Hangouts is available. To make other calls though, you’ll have to add some credit to your account., and pay a relatively small per-minute call charge.

2. Appear.In (Web, iOS)

One of the easiest ways to start a voice or video call. No sign ups, no downloads.

If you want an incredibly simple way to start a call Appear.in Now Lets You Add Video Conferencing Facilities To Any Website Appear.in Now Lets You Add Video Conferencing Facilities To Any Website Simply put, it is now possible to integrate Appear.in within your own website and blog. But why should you care? Read More , Appear.in is what you’re looking for. You don’t need to sign up to anything. You don’t even need to download anything! There is an iOS app, though, if you’re interested.

Simply create a “Room” link, and share that link with whoever you want to chat with (up to eight people). When a recipient clicks the link, the room will open in their browser (this works on mobile, too).

You can choose to either have a voice or video call, and you can also share your screen. And if you’re worried about privacy, you can “lock” your call to prevent anyone else from joining if they somehow found your unique link.

3. ooVoo (Web, Android, iOS, Windows, Mac)

Like WhatsApp, you can make domestic and international calls too.

Like a lovechild between WhatsApp and Skype, ooVoo is a free cross platform (Android, iOS, Windows, Web) app that allows free calls to other ooVoo users, and paid calls to landlines and mobiles. It’s group video calls are of particularly high quality, which is the main reason it’s included in this list.

If you start a Web-Based ooVoo chat, up to 12 people can join for free, without signing up or downloading anything. All you have to do is send them a unique link. All calls can be recorded, and screens can be shared.

It’s unlikely many of your contacts use the app, but if they do, it also doubles up as a messaging app, where you can record and send text messages and videos. It’s basically like WhatsApp, but also allows calls to landlines and web-based calls to non-users.

4. Viber

Offers free calls and chats between users. Also, includes games, public chats, and calls to mobiles and landlines.

If you make a lot of international calls No Roaming Fees: How Traveling Internationally Can Be Cheaper No Roaming Fees: How Traveling Internationally Can Be Cheaper There's no reason to spend a dime on roaming fees. Yet, I constantly hear about people forking over their hard-earned money to talk with friends or family while traveling abroad. Read More , Viber is a massively popular ad-free option, available on most platforms including the desktop (on Mac and Linux, too).

Viber offers free text chat, voice and video calls to anyone else who uses the app (which currently has over 800m users). Each call can hold up to 40 people. Other domestic and international calls are charged at a very affordable rate, starting at just over $0.01 per minute.

As well as voice and video calls, you can also send documents and text, image, and video messages via the app. All messages are encrypted.

To differentiate Viber from other options, it also has a decent selection of games so you can challenge your friends to a duel. There are also a range of public chats you can join to keep in contact with your favorite brands and topics.

5. Talky (Web, iOS)

Like Appear.In, an extremely easy way to host a group video chat. No download required.

Just like Appear.in, Talky sells itself as “a truly simple video chat [with] screen sharing for groups”.

Again, simply pick a room name, get a unique URL, then share this URL with up to 15 people. The call is then accessible via each person’s browser (or via the iOS app).

Once a call is live, you can easily turn your webcam or microphone on and off, and chat via text. Once everyone’s online, you can also lock the call for extra privacy.

And again like Appear.In, you can’t use Talky to make international or domestic calls.

6. Voca (Android, iOS)

Free user-to-user calls, and some of the cheapest international calls on the market.

Working through your Wi-Fi or data connection, Voca gives you extremely easy access to very affordable international calls to over 230 countries. For instance, U.S.-to-U.S. calls to landlines and phones cost $0.001. You can find full rates on Voca’s site.

If your friends and family are also using the app, then text, voice, and video calls are completely free, though the app will use your data if you’re not connected to Wi-Fi. For the security conscious, all calls and messages are encrypted.

And, The App You Know About: WhatsApp

Free voice or video calls to any other WhatsApp users (on mobile). But no calls to anyone who’s not on WhatsApp.

And then we have WhatsApp (and its security-obsessed alternatives 4 Slick WhatsApp Alternatives that Guard Your Privacy 4 Slick WhatsApp Alternatives that Guard Your Privacy Facebook bought WhatsApp. Now that we're over the shock of that news, are you worried about your data privacy? Read More ). Although the app is available on Android, iOS, Windows, Desktop, and Web, WhatsApp calls are only available on Android, iOS and Windows.

It’s popularity in the U.S., Canada, Europe (and elsewhere) has seen the app attract over one billion users. At first, the app was mainly just for messaging your friends. Now it’s grown to also offer voice and video calling. These calls are made via your data plan, not over your network (so you may be charged for using data, but not your included minutes).

When using WhatsApp’s call features, you can only call other WhatsApp users (one person at a time, no group calls). If they don’t have WhatsApp, you can easily send them an invite.

Will You be Abandoning Skype?

Although Skype is usually the default option for calls over the internet, there are many great alternatives out there. These range from the super simple, to the feature-rich, with plenty in between.

Do you think any of these will be good enough for you to start moving away from Skype?

If so, what frustrated you so much about Skype to make you start searching for alternatives?

Originally written by Joel Lee on Sep 7, 2012.

Image Credit: Ditty_about_summer via Shutterstock

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

  1. Inga Thengils
    August 21, 2017 at 2:34 pm

    I am looking into other programs than Skype - I thought it was just my internet but it seems that other people here is having the same problems as I - i.e., blurry screen and braking up audio and video and really not good as I am teaching online and it is very difficult if things are not working..
    one question -- what do you feel is best for iMac ?

  2. Art
    August 18, 2017 at 11:07 pm

    I am looking for an alternative to skype because the last couple of versions have changed things I liked about skype such as:

    - My contact list being on the left side all the time.
    - Being able to select my online status and not having it done for me.
    - Being able to get answers to questions from skype.
    - Video sessions not being dropped so often.

  3. Lalita
    August 18, 2017 at 12:16 am

    Skype keeps flagging every username I make as spam and it is unrecoverable every time. I get max 2 weeks with each one before it says I am sending spammy emails, when I haven't sent any.

  4. notanmslover
    August 17, 2017 at 4:24 pm

    Allegedly my account has been abused for spam and other illegal things not described by M$ and therefore has been suspended. To re-activate my account they want my phone number. I know from a lot of other people this happened to them too. The true reason behind this is that M$ wants our real data. They are spying on our everyday lives together with the NSA (who has an office at Redmonds). I do not trust M$ further than I could ever throw a piano.

  5. Anon
    August 16, 2017 at 5:00 am

    The "new and improved Skype" is useless. It simply does not work reliably. The interface is atrocious, but worse, the performance has deteriorated to the point that Skype is in fact useless. Calls don't connect properly, or connect with no video or a static video snapshot in blurry vision. Skype used to be literally the best in the world, but now I cannot achieve anywhere near the same call quality. Hopeless. Have a look at the Google Play Store - the first 20 bits of feedback are all complaints! Microsoft keep saying "we're listening" but they are not. They are about to have another Nokia episode - I'm leaving Skype, and so will millions of others. Sell your Microsoft shares today!

  6. Lee
    August 16, 2017 at 1:52 am

    THE "CONSTANT" UPDATES are wearing thin. And the very privacy concerns I had you suggest Google? Microsoft and Facebook as replacements? I guess I don't need any of them.

  7. Dayle
    August 14, 2017 at 2:37 pm

    I am aware this article is a little out of date but I think it links to some of the more recent Skype developments e.g. Skype stopping SkypeTV. There are now a lot of "non tech-savvy" user left unable to video call. I find it interesting that TV based video call services are not factored into this equation; services like Telly Bean or Sentab TV. Both are app based but both also work on TV too.

  8. Eddie
    August 11, 2017 at 11:03 pm

    Skype lost some nice features with its latest iOS update. I can no longer change my status nor find information on other users, like birthdays and # of contacts. The new interface is awful; apparently they're trying to emulate social media sites instead of going with their tried and true look. The crowning touch for me is that after functioning flawlessly on my MacBook Air with 10.11.6 (no recent updates to it or to Skype), Skype now crashes within two seconds of starting up. After a couple of re-boots to my Mac and re-starts of Skype, it will sometimes run but crashes after a few minutes of inactivity.

  9. RichieO
    August 11, 2017 at 1:15 pm

    Killing off the Skype phone, without notice or warning and costing millions in equipment, wasted time and business loss, I for one will not buy ANYTHING from microsoft in future, Skype is gone for thousands of once loyal customers...

  10. Barbara
    August 11, 2017 at 12:23 pm

    I will be leaving Skype for definite! The reason is for the last few years I having been using a Skype dual/voip phone. Since Skype have now unsupported these phones I will find an alternative. I have no idea why Skype have done this as these phone systems are not cheap!!! Also took some time to set up.
    If anyone knows why Skype have done this I would be interested to hear.

  11. John
    August 11, 2017 at 9:19 am

    Moving away from Skype because of being forced to tie it to a Microsoft account, which gives Microsoft the ability to connect recordings of Skype conversations with other personal information, such as one's profile and connections on LinkedIn.

  12. John
    August 10, 2017 at 9:22 am

    The quality of Skype calls is very variable, and often you can hear yourself talking or these is a background noise that amplifies over time to drown out the person speaking. The worst offence recently has been the unsolicited, automatic and irreversible merging of contacts from Outlook and Skype. I like to keep work and non-work contacts separate in different Skype accounts, but now I have a contact list containing my work colleagues, my friends, my girlfriend, my ex-wife and my relatives. What a mess Microsoft has made, and the worst part is you can't get rid of the Skype contacts. "Remove contact" doesn't completely remove them, neither does "block contact". What kind of madness is behind that warped thinking? Time to move on to another video chat app.

  13. Norm
    August 8, 2017 at 7:48 am

    Skype updated and I lost all of my contacts and now because I don't have outlook I cannot use it. Definitely gone down hill since Microsoft took it over. I will be looking for something else and I'm sick and tired of being channelled to somewhere I don't want to go.

  14. Peter Mackenzie
    August 7, 2017 at 3:25 pm

    I have been very happy with the service provided by Skype until Microsoft took it over and now I am continually channelled to a microsoft account to make changes to my Skype. I do not like the current Skype operated by Microsoft.

  15. Bob
    August 4, 2017 at 5:57 pm

    Constant updates you have to take. Bye skype.

  16. Chris
    August 3, 2017 at 10:42 am

    Skype will be abandoned for something yet to be determined.
    The UI, the bugs are making it useless.
    The final straw though, is the recent set of recurring partial or complete outages.

  17. Henry
    July 31, 2017 at 4:39 pm

    Skype should be renamed to not responding. The last 2months it has gotten so bad that if it connects, it continually hangs and drops.

  18. Alan Jones
    July 29, 2017 at 10:44 am

    I am looking into dumping Skype because themselves and Microsoft have dumped on me. Without any prior warning my Nokia 635 Windows phone no longer connects to Skype because it uses Windows 8.1. As of 17 July I have just discovered, this is no longer supported by updates, unless you have the 1 gb version of my phone when you can upgrade to Windows 10. Unfortunately mine is the 600 mb model, Microsoft advice is risible, buy a new phone, as if! I only bought this in October 2014 so it was €210 waste of money to be now chucked in the bin. I only use it for calls within the country, free on any network, and calls back to the UK using Skype, if it was a car it would be extremely low mileage. Microsoft get more and more arrogant and domineering, though I suppose the same could be said of a number of big American software companies. Anyway, to say I am extremely angry is to say the least.

    • Rob Nightingale
      July 29, 2017 at 1:00 pm

      Well, there are plenty of decent options for you to choose between :)

  19. Lin
    July 28, 2017 at 10:56 pm

    I have a Skype internet phone but it is useless now as I can't sign in, it keeps saying it is off line, I can manage to get it online but in only a few seconds it goes offline. My laptop still works with Skype but I need a proper internet phone for some calls.

    • Rob Nightingale
      July 29, 2017 at 1:00 pm

      People getting locked out of their Skype account seems to be a huge problem. I'm going to need to look into this.

      • Lin
        August 21, 2017 at 5:58 am

        I've been in touch with Skype after going round in circles and I have been told by them that Skype no longer supports Skype phones. This to me seemed a little weird as they have just recently debited my account for the u.k. telephone number that I had for my Skype phone. How can they charge me for something that no longer exists. I have had to cancel my subscription so that I'm not charged in the future.

  20. John
    July 26, 2017 at 1:19 am

    I want my money back from Skype for having made my Skype dual phones useless !
    Read
    https://answers.microsoft.com/en-us/skype/forum/skype_accountms-skype_number/my-skype-dual-phone-ata-is-not-receiving-calls-why/e449db3c-4b63-4e81-8d14-3dac0626713b
    My previous post
    I have 2 Skype phones RTX4088 (Firmware version 172) on individual bases , I cannot login o Skype even after pairing again with the main base and resetting both handsets settings and inputting the password again.
    At best only 1 handset can sign in for about a minute or so then it goes offline and retries to sign in again and repeats this endlessly until the rechargeable batteries run almost flat while sitting on the charger base.
    I've also changed to a new main Skype base re-paired
    Weeks ago (about 3 ) both sets were working fine and running on an NBN line Tier-1 12 MBps provided by AusBBS .
    The new skype android app is the biggest crap ever, no where you can find any settings to log in or out, no status showing anywhere no ringtones settings, ..bring back a normal app that I can configure.
    prince of wales Mill Park 3082 Melbourne Victoria Australia.
    You claim that the problem is resolved but it isn't for me, read
    https://heartbeat.skype.com/2017/07/skype_connectivity_problems_2.html
    I want it fixed now!

    • Lin
      August 21, 2017 at 6:01 am

      I actually managed to speak to someone from Skype and was told that Skype no longer supports Skype phones.

  21. Dave
    July 25, 2017 at 4:14 am

    I had five Philips VOIP841 handsets that used a Skype Base unit (I also had two spare base units)..I also had 2 Skype Belkin Wifi Phones. All functioned perfectly for years using SKYPEIN service which I had PAID for for more than 10 years (Way before MS took over Skype)...
    ALL my investment in Skype was made useless on 1 July 2017 (I discovered it on 7 July)...So hundreds of dollars of equipment made useless (Can call but can't receive). I have abandoned Skype. I do not use a Smartphone and have no intention to get one in order to use Skype and I'm not going to leave a PC on with Skype running either...So Skype is history for me...
    I suspect the next thing to happen will be Windows 10 on all my 10 computers...But I have Linux images ready to go when that happens...
    That bad headed idiot SatNad is running MS into oblivion...

  22. Aleksander
    July 21, 2017 at 6:33 pm

    After last update on ios (version 8 I believe) skype has become unusable. Cannot connect to other people - only texting works, the interface is confusing.

    • Rob Nightingale
      July 29, 2017 at 1:01 pm

      I find the Skype app is just unbelievably slow these days.

  23. T Riddle
    July 20, 2017 at 8:48 pm

    Reasons to abandon Skype --(1) It's buggy -- calls wrong numbers, won't connect, redials last number when you enter a new one, number pad won't work in calls... maybe not all these every day, but VOIP needs to be reliable and Skype is NOT, (2) poor user interface design. My opinion, not going to say more, but it's caused me numerous problems.

    • Rob Nightingale
      July 29, 2017 at 1:01 pm

      Yep. I agree.

  24. Neil Arnwine
    July 19, 2017 at 10:06 am

    Neil Arnwine: I can't prove my identity to Microsoft. Ya'll don't have much imagination in that regard.

  25. tim
    July 18, 2017 at 10:57 pm

    requires me to update. update not possible.
    freakin updates. there is no point in updates these days anymore.

    • Adam B
      July 19, 2017 at 12:27 am

      Updates are in fact ways of pushing down all of their rubbish, second it fills up your storage capacity which ultimately make you buy a new phone / tablet, it's all worked out between them, these giant companies all work against the consumer.
      I use an old Samsung Ace and now skype won't run unless they download the updates, the updates are NO longer compatible with that version of Android, so meaning I need to buy a brand new phone with an updated android, you wouldn't believe the amount of junk they push down on you, and you can't even uninstall them, pretty much like what Windows 10 does to its users, it will push down updates whether you like it or not, and it will reboot when it feels like without giving you any choices, in other word Microsoft and co will own your own computer and device.
      I use Linux and use free apps

  26. VW
    July 18, 2017 at 12:50 pm

    Skype is frustrating since the update. I cant send or receive calls. The calls show up as missed but they were never seen to answer! I really dislike the update. Its difficult to find features, i cant tell when contacts are on line and im ready to find a new ap soon!

    • akel p
      July 20, 2017 at 7:17 pm

      Similar problem here,
      since about two weeks ago, I can't make video/audio call with one specific contact. Only able to send messages and files to each other. No notice of incoming Audio or Video Skype calls.
      We'r not blocked by each other. Both have latest skype ver. 7.38. Echo/audio test is working fine. Other contacts connect just fine. has MS blocked us for blocking their annoying ads in skype?? all we did, added apps.skype.com to restricted sites in internet options of IE. this is our choice!

  27. Georgio
    July 17, 2017 at 12:13 pm

    Skype or rather microsoft have stopped supporting my router connected phone (been with them since it was Skype) so I have no need for them now. BUT I bet they are still connecting my monthly sub. I will use my SIP phone easier and less complicated than using skype on my computer!

  28. graham holman
    July 14, 2017 at 6:45 am

    I think it is a * too much management*problem, as you so succinctly put it it did not need fixing.skype must have many managers trying to give a reason to be there.

  29. Donald Saer
    July 13, 2017 at 4:17 pm

    So, bearing in mind my previous comment, I have signed up for Google Hangouts per the list provided in this bulletin, to replace Skype. We will see how it goes.
    I very much appreciate this information bulletin. It saved me a lot of time in researching options to replace Skype.
    Thank You.

  30. Donald Saer
    July 13, 2017 at 4:07 pm

    I have been a Skype user for 9 years. Most of my calls are international, frequently made in countries other than the US.
    Skype is requiring me to “upgrade” to a newer version that is incompatible with my older computer. My computer runs on OS 10.6.8 and the new version of Skype requires 10.9+. Before this month, the upgrade appeared to be optional. Now, it is mandatory. Therefore, I am now unable to use Skype.
    Also, there have been numerous irritating things with Skype. What used to be a simple procedure to make a call is now more complex. Navigating the screens are more complex. Skype appears to be charging more, or perhaps the method of charging for calls has changed to my disadvantage. Sometimes it takes a long time to make a connection. However, once the connection has been made, it appears that the quality of the call has improved over time.
    The general impression that I have developed is that: Skype originally placed customer service as its number one priority. Now, I believe that customer service is a lower priority.

  31. donald saer
    July 13, 2017 at 3:17 pm

    Skype now requires an advanced operating system - os 10.9+. My old computer runs on os 10.6. Up until the last few days, the update was optional and Skype functioned well on my computer. Now, the update appears to be mandatory and Skype will not let me sign in.
    But other little things have been irritating recently. What used to be a relatively simple process to make a call has become more complex. Navigating the screen is difficult. The charges - the method of charges perhaps - appear to have increased. Frequently I do not get through quickly. Generally, once connected, the quality of the call has been good and improved over time.
    I have used Skype for 9 years in various countries and the majority of my calls are/were international.
    My impressions: The original Skype placed the customer interests first. Customer interests are lower priority with this new Skype.

  32. Anne
    July 13, 2017 at 8:07 am

    I guess that my computer is too old for Skype as if my phone...so online suits me!

  33. Andrew Mitchell
    July 13, 2017 at 4:17 am

    It kept charging me 9 dollars to video chat

  34. Barb
    July 10, 2017 at 6:35 pm

    I'm looking for an alternative to skype which has an ability to create a personal voice message greeting. Does anybody know one?

  35. Michael Carson
    July 8, 2017 at 12:45 am

    Microsoft has progressively destroyed Skype. The video/screen share drive our graphic card crazy. Horsepower hog.

  36. Clive Roberts
    July 7, 2017 at 12:13 am

    I have enjoyed Skype for years. Yesterday it offered an 'update'. I now find my contact list has disappeared, and incomprehensible 'bots' have taken over.
    I still wish to speak to family and friends, but apparently the clever people at MS/Skype think I would rather speak to an android, and have cut me off from my people. Indeed, it is a chilling preview of the artificial intelligence world in which MS 'experts' wish us to live, and so, in its self-serving paternalism, severs all our inconvenient ties with human beings.
    Perhaps those Microsoft clever dicks are already androids who have taken over.

    • Rob Nightingale
      July 7, 2017 at 12:16 pm

      That sounds terrible. Have you tried to get in contact with Skype to see if they can rectify the problem?

      • Paul O
        July 10, 2017 at 6:55 pm

        Skype won't recitfy the problem, because Skype is the problem. This June update is a ground up "re-launch" of Skype and it is universally hated. 98% of reviews on the App Store are 1 star. I have never seen such a poor rating following an update. Microsoft have never had a good record for updating their stuff but this takes the biscuit - loss of core functionality replaced by gimmicks that 90% of the userbase don't give two figs for.

        Microsoft tell us they listen to feedback - ha! I guess the same twit that said that also signed off this update without testing or even using common sense.

        • Larry
          July 24, 2017 at 8:24 pm

          I do love the "...takes the biscuit..." and the "...two figs..." bits!!! Me I'm no where near
          being that politically correct though we won't go there..... ;-)))

  37. John Naulls
    July 6, 2017 at 4:03 pm

    We used to use Skype for all of our phone communications, by using a Skype USB adaptor as a bridge between our PABX and a dedicated Windows server. This allowed us to make paid calls to landlines, and free calls to Skype users by dialling a 2-digit shortcut code. Incoming Skype calls appeared on a dedicated PABX trunk, and could be answered in the usual way.
    Then Skype discontinued support for shortcut codes; we got around this for a while by using third-party software called SkypeMate. But the latest versions of Skype don't support USB handsets at all. Unfortunately, none of the products mentioned in this article appears to be a suitable replacement.
    Skype issues new versions almost weekly, and each seems to have fewer facilities and more bugs than the one before. We have now stopped using Skype completely, but have yet to find a product that offers the same facilities as the early versions.

    • Rob Nightingale
      July 7, 2017 at 12:17 pm

      It seems a trend that so many people are experiencing many problems after small updates. For me, Skype is just ridiculously slow. When I load it up, it takes over 20 seconds just to display my contact list. Unbelievable.

  38. rgray318
    July 6, 2017 at 4:04 am

    I am abandoning Skype for Android permanently today, not because I want to but because Microsoft has forced many users to do so (just look at the Skype support forums and news articles). Any version after 6.34 is just plain crap and completely broken. Today 6.34 would not sign in until I updated, but the new version is completely unusable as a chat app. And when you try Skype for Web on your Android device it says "Oops Skype for Web is not ready for your device". Only option left is to use a different chat service such as Facebook or Telegram.

    So moral of the story is, Microsoft is obviously trying to get rid of as many of their users as possible, maybe to ease traffic on their servers (?) I wish I knew what the deal was. It is impossible for me to believe that they are actually this utterly incompetent, so the only possible explanation besides insane amounts of incompetency must be they are trying to remove as many of us users as possible. So, for the first time since Skype was first introduced I am now a Skype-less individual. lol, Thanks Microsoft, thanks a whole bunch for being THE biggest idiot of corporations.

    Going to keep trying Browser after Browser to see if we can force the Web version to work. Fingers crossed...

    • kimkim
      July 6, 2017 at 12:23 pm

      yep same here. Skype sent all my contacts to Microsoft before it even gave me the chance to turn that option off. And the best of all this is, you can't even write them feedback on their website unless you log in with a damn microsoft account. Lol what. That's it, that's enough, skype is gone for me and will never come back.

    • jsab
      July 7, 2017 at 3:37 am

      Same story. Thank you. After so much annoyance, looking for alternatives.

      • Rob Nightingale
        July 7, 2017 at 12:18 pm

        Well, I hope some of these alternatives come in handy!

    • Rob Nightingale
      July 7, 2017 at 12:19 pm

      After every update, Skype seems to be losing tons of readers now. In my opinion, it's only a matter of time before Microsoft launches something new, but similar (and better), and simply scraps Skype.

    • Conwy
      July 18, 2017 at 1:02 pm

      Same story here. All my contacts were uploaded and I could find no way to delete contacts on the app. Plus, when I went online to cancel my Skype account, I was informed that I would also loose all information on OneDrive, messages, etc. So Microsoft has linked everything together and forces you to use Skype if you use other apps such as OneDrive? How ridiculous. I guess I will use Google Drive instead of OneDrive. And I will have to look for a replacement to stay in touch with friends and family when I travel abroad.

  39. Chris
    July 5, 2017 at 10:43 pm

    Microsoft Skype is no longer supported for iOS Mountain Lion, Microsoft can go to hell as far as I'm concerned!

    • Rob Nightingale
      July 7, 2017 at 12:19 pm

      :( Boo!!!

  40. bo
    July 4, 2017 at 10:30 pm

    tired of every time I turn on my computer i get asked for microsnot or skype password

  41. Neil Arnwine
    July 2, 2017 at 9:16 am

    Skype kicked me off after I updated to Windows 10.

    • Rob Nightingale
      July 7, 2017 at 12:20 pm

      Lol. The irony is pretty crazy!

  42. Neil Arnwine
    July 2, 2017 at 9:16 am

    Skype kicked me off after I updated Windows to 0.

  43. nathan
    July 1, 2017 at 12:56 pm

    Skype has just pushed out a 'beta' version for Linux users that has NO settings controls for hardware, or any of the other granier elements of their application. In short, the user has NO CONTROL over the application anymore. You can't even switch from the integrated camera on your laptop to a usb connected camera. The older version was retired. Microsoft routinely does this sort of 'downgrading' of every piece of software it purchases that is Linux compatible. To me, it stinks of monopoly building of the same nature that Google is now being sued by the EU for dabbling in (albeit by other methods). Microsoft has so dominated the commercial application market that the entire world is now facing jeopardy from attack vectors on it's operating systems simply because people have no alternatives for their business applications (that they know of). Skype is now in the hands of a global tyrant, and Linux is not 'in' with their philosophy...therefore - 'beta' really? BS.

    • Rob Nightingale
      July 7, 2017 at 12:20 pm

      Yea, I doubt MS put much effort into making Skype compatible with other operating systems. Keeping those walled gardens as closed off as possible is too important :(

  44. Sil
    June 27, 2017 at 12:30 pm

    My issue with Skype is now that Microsoft owns it they are pushing an operating system upgrade and soon will no longer support XP. My wife calls her mother in Ukraine and we are not going to ask her to upgrade her PC because Microsoft is pushing Windows 10 ( I hate Windows 10 more than I hate ISIS )

    • rgray318
      July 6, 2017 at 4:08 am

      Agreed, I believe Microsoft is becoming the first corporate entity that truly needs to have a Military force to go destroy it. I can't think of another company so deserving of 100% destruction. Ten years ago I loved this company and now its about as evil as the devil himself.

    • Rob Nightingale
      July 7, 2017 at 12:21 pm

      Their issue with pushing people to Windows 10 is particularly harsh. They're so adamant to get everyone upgraded, they've stopped caring for the people who just don't have the hardware for Windows 10.

    • $kype i$ dead YEAH!!!!!
      July 9, 2017 at 7:12 pm

      Switch to Linux (any flavour) and run a pirate copy of windows 10 pro as a virtual machine in virtualbox. Skype and all their other m$ bullshit will work fine, plus you'll not need an antivirus as the machine boots up with the same image each time you launch it.

  45. Martin Waugh
    June 24, 2017 at 11:45 pm

    Skype was great until Microsoft got their hands on it! Their latest update does not accommodate Bluetooth speakers. Handsets yes. Speakers no. So if you are not at the pc wearing a headset, you can't hear an incoming call. How useless is that! Also, you can't gather several people around to participate in a call. I'm evaluating the alternatives....

  46. John Robertson
    June 22, 2017 at 4:02 am

    With update Skype "disappeared" most of my contacts, all of my history save one, went through hell to sign in on Iphone even after password change(s), incomprehensible menu symbols and presented me with a monster. To top it off I cannot get a refund for my Skype Credit. What the hell are these people thinking?

  47. Anatolii
    June 21, 2017 at 2:22 pm

    I have persistent difficulties with signing in. They say that my account was suspended, that it is associated with sending a lot of spam and they, of course, want ensure i am the right user... Surely, i'll switch to another way of internet calling, as this is too annoyning. Miscrosoft is frustration. A year ago i bought a Nokia phone and there are so many issues with it...

  48. Zarg
    June 21, 2017 at 11:31 am

    After 2 days of using Skype I have been reminded once again why you should never use Microsoft products. Went to Skype this morning and they had locked me out of my account! Some nonsense about someone may have used your account in violation of our TOS, but the REAL reason was... They want to force users to give a phone number! Skype said "we'll send a code to your phone to prove it's you" or similar. Hah! They sent the security install confirmation code via email, so why can't they do so this time? Oh. Right. Because then the Microsoft haven't added another juicy phone number to their databases for who knows what reason in future - telemarketing? Other spying purposes? A phone number doesn't prove identity any more than an email does, so it's bull. Thanks for your article. Going to delete Skype and try other (hopefully nicer!) companies now.

  49. Robert Wilkinson
    June 20, 2017 at 12:38 am

    Skype was truly great in its day. Then it started delaying me with "Improving my experience" every time I called someone.

    Lately it keeps trying to make me upgrade quite frequently and I then get Error 1603, which has no clear solution anywhere I can find. The only way I can get the upgrade to work is to reboot my machine and upgrade Skype before doing any other work.

    If Microsoft can't figure out how to install their own application on their own OS, without an error, or at the very least with an error that has an explanation, I believe we are all lost !!

    • IHS
      June 21, 2017 at 7:03 pm

      Skype was awesome until Microsoft bought it. Then, as with all Microsoft software acquisitions, it was ground into garbage. SO frustrating! I have PAID for their service and not only does it not work - there are no customer service agents available for live help. (Unlike in the old days, when service was awesome).

  50. Marsha
    June 15, 2017 at 11:31 pm

    I used to love it, it's all I ever wanted to use, not now it's hard to maneuver, hard for those that are computer illiterate and so, in it's aim to reach others, it has lost a lot more. It's not a good choice for many reasons, and with so much more out there, with better everything, why stay with it. the free 60 min. with Microsoft isn't worth using when I can get free elsewhere. I need video chat not more phone help good grief.

  51. alia
    June 15, 2017 at 3:34 pm

    somebody else spying on my communications on a shared computer is why i want an alternative. a web based one is great. i'll try google.

  52. Sam
    June 9, 2017 at 6:44 pm

    As of June 1, 2017, Skype no longer supports 3rd party hardware that is used to make Skype your home phone. I can no longer receive phone calls from anyone who is not on Skype, and even then, it's only on my iMac. The device I used to integrate Skype with my V-Tech phone system is now useless. Looking for something new... and will never consider Skype again!

    • IHS
      June 21, 2017 at 7:05 pm

      [looking for the LOVE button...]

  53. Reber Clark
    June 8, 2017 at 5:42 pm

    Skype got rid of the audio controls. I would listen in on rehearsals of concert bands and to make it work we needed to turn off the auto-leveling of the volume to prevent "pumping' and dropouts. This seems no longer possible in Skype. Which is too bad. It was a great tool for remote rehearsal.

  54. B. R. Ashley
    June 6, 2017 at 3:21 pm

    The scumsuckers are abandoning my hardware. I will not get a new android 7 phone just so I can continue to use Skype. They can sit on it and spin rapidly. (And I want my Skype credit refunded, little that it is.)

  55. Mike Walsh
    June 5, 2017 at 5:45 pm

    I'd been using Skype on Linux for the last four years.....and the desktop client is next to useless, anyway. With this new redesign, Linux support is being extinguished. ('Embrace, extend, extinguish', anybody?)

    I dropped Skype a few months back in any case, when I discovered WIRE. And so have most of my friends, and a few family members. It does everything Skype can; well, everything that I need it to......

  56. Davster
    June 4, 2017 at 6:01 pm

    the new version of Skype via Microsoft will make me leave Skype if it becomes the only option.
    No menu bar and I couldn't figure out how to ad a phone contact.
    Lots of time wasted until I was able to revert to the old version.

  57. Mjhportugal
    June 4, 2017 at 4:22 pm

    I have Skype on more than one system so I tried on iPhone to call mum but no joy so I reloaded Skype put in name and password it was rejected wrong password so to save fuss I decided to change code entirely. Tried to call daughter from kindle Skype password wrong so i tried old password but no so tried new again but no again, I am 60 and am faster than Skype at updating its shit shit shit

  58. Don Bryce
    June 2, 2017 at 9:47 pm

    All of them need a mobile account. Bit devous. Why not just for PC?

    • Dartmoor
      June 10, 2017 at 9:34 am

      Not true! Tried many alternatives and settled on ooVoo. Works just like Skype used to, in the good old days, when it was simple and reliable. No mobile account required. Works on Windows PC, XP through W10

      • Karel
        August 10, 2017 at 2:38 pm

        ooVoo dont need phone number... but simple text messaging are made so difficult and slow, it cannot compared to any other product. Lot of clicks before you can start typing and you cannot see message thread!?!

  59. Rui Santos
    June 2, 2017 at 11:08 am

    I am not able to reach Customer Help per email neither per phone. All help is automated, the Center web pages, the chat. The yearly subscription of around 70 Euros has disappeared from my account and I cannot reach support to get it back. Not admissible.

  60. Oldgit50
    May 31, 2017 at 9:38 am

    Why do Microsoft always fix something badly which was not broken???? Microsoft are useless. Since they took over Skype they have ruined what was a very good communication tool. I have just created a new skype account and find that my username is my phone number. That is ridiculous, I can never remember my phone number. What happened to the easy to remember unique skype name. For the next day or so I will stagger along with that stupid account while I check out the alternatives. I will then cancel the skype account when I have downloaded a suitable alternative. RIP SKYPE. Please sack whoever made the decision to no longer use unique easy to remember skype names.

    • Rob Nightingale
      May 31, 2017 at 10:17 am

      I think it's just such a huge company that it can't keep up with the more agile players that have snuck up and are now taking over. It wouldn't surprise me if within the next 3-5 years, Skype folded.

  61. Mate Jac
    May 27, 2017 at 11:31 pm

    I have had my private skype account for years, yesterday I decided to create another one for business purposes, all went well until after logging out to change accounts I can't log in again. Thinking there must have been a bug in the system I actually created a second new account (not my normal behaviour, but was seriously confused by the weird response lol) just to realise I had the same problem on my neck. This is insane and reading the comments to this article I'm happy to see I'm not alone in this skype mad house... pretty incredible how someone can f*ck up such a great and simple tool and make this monster out of it... R.I.P Skype

    • Rob Nightingale
      May 28, 2017 at 4:59 pm

      Getting permanently locked out of accounts seems to be a theme here. I'm hoping Skype has some kind of fix soon!

      • Mate Jac
        May 28, 2017 at 10:54 pm

        They painted themselves into the corner while trying to control users to the max and simultaniously getting to (stealing) as much data as possible. The code must be so corrupt by now a whole new script will have to be written. It's the same with all empires eventually the giant cant support its own weight anymore. Skype should be simplyfied, back to basics again, if that is even possible with Microsoft as the owner. Web based more anonymous tools will probably take over, users becoming more aware about privacy and so. Thanks for your reply :) cheers

  62. David King
    May 19, 2017 at 9:04 am

    After many years with Skype, they have now removed the personal voicemail message facility, making their product useless to us.
    We are now looking to move asap because of this.

    • Rob Nightingale
      May 28, 2017 at 5:02 pm

      Did you find an alternative you were happy with?

    • MARK WILLIAMSON
      June 22, 2017 at 10:45 pm

      Absolutely agree! That just isn't acceptable to anybody. Useless is a good description. And why would they do that? It can only be that they don't even understand what people want from a phone. As far as I know, you can't even pay extra for the feature (and I would even though it would anger me almost as much). Please publish if you find a better solution. Thanks.

  63. David Forbes
    May 17, 2017 at 3:18 pm

    The removal of a 'personal' greeting. We are a charity offering simple IT courses to those who need them. We subscribe to a Skype number and run a virtual office, manned by volunteers. Our clients, already dubious of IT, need to be greeted with a welcoming greeting not a generic robot. This is appalling and we will most certainly looking for an alternative.

  64. antar
    May 17, 2017 at 5:49 am

    hi,
    Im just realize how horrible the Skype service is.
    Lets start by the simple fact that they hide customer support and you will be able to reach them only on certain matters if its SOS (matters that got to do with payment or security violation) and you will be able to open a chat with someone that doesn't know how to deal with things like that, but in all other issues they will forward you to their help section which is not updated since a while - in my case I was trying to record a voice greeting and couldn't find it and continually was referred to more help content or the community. apperantely they took down the service of recording a greeting and didn't updated this huge thing in their files..
    Any way, I'm done with Skype and I think that soon also Skype will be done with Skype.
    Is someone can recommend a similar service to having a Skype number for my business..thats all I need, a US phone that I could communicate with my customers in the US as its a local number. Thanks

    • Calibrator
      June 11, 2017 at 1:27 am

      My skype identity was stolen - with some money in the account. There was no way of contacting Microsoft to fix this. Providing details of prior financial transactions on the account at their request failed to convince them that I was the true owner of the account.

      I'm done with skype and forcing all of my contacts to use alternatives.

  65. Andy Griffiths
    May 15, 2017 at 4:14 am

    Locked out of my account simply because I was logged in on 2 different devices at the same time. No way to appeal other than submit a form which results in the response that I haven't given sufficient info and I should submit another form with the exact same questions which then gives me the same response repeat ad nauseum like a Kafkaesque nightmare . Bye bye Skype F*** off and die.

  66. Vic
    May 12, 2017 at 4:53 am

    Got a windows wifi phone.
    I had a unlimited auto renew subscription, US and Canada, ($2.99C)lost my CC, cancelled card, Skype went to renew, couldn't because card dead. Got new CC, tried to reactivate subscription, can't, have to get a subscription for Canada ($4.00US) and US ($4.00US)now. With all the call drops and people will not pick up for that number that shows on display. It is not worth it amymore. Used to be very good, but now shit.

  67. Bob J.
    May 8, 2017 at 10:30 pm

    Just the instructions for using Skype alone are f**ked up. Written like a military field manual, only without the military logic -- just the typical illogic of Microsoft-think. I can remember when the changeover from 1.0 to 2.0 was controversial, again when 6.0 showed up, and even 7.0 and thereafter -- but nothing is as screwed up as is the current Skype now that Microsoft has sexually abused it. I will glad be trying out the alternatives listed above. As for my Skype contacts, I suppose I'd better get them recorded now before Microsoft starts charging me for their management and then makes it impossible for me to to export to another system. I cannot believe how incompetent Microsoft has been ever since Gates stole CP-M from Gary Kiddall's widow, renamed it DOS, and ripped off IBM for a license. Some things never change.

  68. Me
    May 8, 2017 at 1:41 pm

    "Skype" does not work, has never worked and probably will never work. When you first install it it extracts lots of personal information which it passes to Microsoft (who pass it to their friends for ads serving), then when you try to log in it always says "there is a problem with your Microsoft account". ???? "Microsoft account"- I'm trying to use Skype wakey wakey !! What has the maker of my television got to do with using a computer software program.? "Skype"'s programmers are extremely amateur. I remember in the early 90's that Yahoo Messenger was able to do far more than most of these shonky "apps" do now (until it was 'knobled').
    The lost art of computer programming:
    Everyone is so obsessed with dumbphones and trying to make cash by issuing completely useless "apps' via Google's cashmaker interface that they have forgotten how computers work haha. shit, shit and more and more shit. Is there anyone out there who can program or are we consigned to a future of Microsoft morons who cannot even speak their own language..........

  69. Merv
    May 5, 2017 at 3:49 am

    When they deleted the ability for me to see the local time at the location I was calling - that was it. What a dumb action by Microsoft but then what can otherwise be expected!!

    • Rob Nightingale
      May 8, 2017 at 10:39 am

      Yep, that is a very dumb move.

  70. Ross
    May 1, 2017 at 3:13 pm

    Used Skype happily for years. Yesterday they simply changed my password without my permission to my Microsoft Account and told me to login using that. The thing is I NEVER had a MS account. Now totally locked out of my account with ten euro unused credit. Trying to recover password turns into an absurd password loop. Unbelievable. I can't believe an online company would simply change your passord without any warning or without your permission!!!

  71. bayazet
    May 1, 2017 at 2:36 pm

    Until up to version 7 skype worked ok. It kept nagging for upgrade, but otherwise I didn't have any problems with it. Then it stopped working, logged me off and demanded upgrade. I upgraded to version 7 and bizarre things started.
    One day I can make calls, the other day I cannot - only chat available.
    I ran SRT utility, reinstalled skype tweaked firewall - nothing helped.
    My overall feeling that whatever M$ touches eventually turns to $h...t. I need to find something else more usable.

  72. Ginger
    April 29, 2017 at 7:05 am

    I don't like that I am forced to link microsoft, can't unlink it without deleting my entire account, can't seem to edit much. I don't enjoy being bullied into staying with a company. And until I make sure all my email business is taken care of I can't delete my account. ugh! Negative 5 stars!

  73. John Riley
    April 27, 2017 at 12:58 pm

    Basically, I had a Skype account before Bill Gates' evil empire took it over. Micro$oft have disabled the account, & set a number of hoops for me to jump through to get it back. They have decided in their infinite wisdom that they don't like the answers I have given, and there is no appeal. So that is that. I need an alternative.

    • Rob Nightingale
      May 8, 2017 at 10:40 am

      Well, you should give one of the alternatives in this article a try :)

  74. Duncan
    April 26, 2017 at 2:31 am

    WTF I can't even see the alternatives. Is this an evil microsoft plot??

  75. Paul Ames
    April 24, 2017 at 9:23 am

    I got my Sax lessons over skype for about 3 years. This required my system to be able to hear and transmit both my Sax while I was playing and the Backing Music I was using. BUT now the EVIL Microsoft has apparently done and "Update". Now my system will not carry music from my Sax and Backing music at the same time.

    • Rob Nightingale
      April 25, 2017 at 3:19 pm

      Did you manage to find an alternative that works better?

      • Paul Ames
        April 26, 2017 at 6:45 am

        WE tried appear.in but the "feed back" to my amp was overbearing. I had to turn up the volume for my instructor in France to hear the backing music while I was playing and as soon as I did the amp began to scream.
        Also general line noise.
        So we continue our search.

  76. dpliler
    April 21, 2017 at 8:07 pm

    Skype is insane! I've had two accounts with Skype over the years and today when trying to log on, neither will suddenly recognize my password. And do you think the recover password or reset password is simple? Hello no! Rather than a simple email sending me to a link to create a new one, Microsoft spiraled me down into the 5th circle of hell asking me to verify my existence remember those I've skyped back in the 70's or how much to the penny I might have paid for previous skype services -- then on what credit card, and what the license plate was for the postal guy who delivered said credit card and what color shirt he was wearing at the time. Okay, so I might be exaggerating a tad for effect, but not much. Then I tried to find a phone # to call Skype in order to scream at someone-- it doesn't exist. Tried to find an email to email someone so I could type-scream--the system just cycled me back into the aforementioned fifth circle of hell. It really really really really really is insane! How do people like this stay in business. I dare someone from skype to log on and pretend the need to reset their password (a password they know is correct in the first place. ha.) The lack of intuitiveness, lack of simplicity, lack of availability, lack-lack-lack... sheesh. Oh, and did I mention that their system apparently won't email at all to Apple Mail. Ha. I figured that out after filling out their forms 3 different times. Anyway...apologies for the venting here but it's cheaper than therapy. They deserve to go under. Out.

    • Rob Nightingale
      April 25, 2017 at 3:19 pm

      I'm stunned by the number of people who've commented on the article! The list of complaints about skype is mind-boggling!

    • Ross
      May 1, 2017 at 6:06 pm

      I had same problem. How is it acceptable to suddenly change your passwords and login details without permission or even prior notice.

    • Mike Walsh
      June 5, 2017 at 6:14 pm

      I'll just add this; at least the browser 'app' (https://web.skype.com) APPEARS to be still working. Well.....kinda. Sort of. Wouldn't like to say for how much longer, mind you..!

  77. Alan W Boal
    April 20, 2017 at 4:07 pm

    Skype is no longer worth the time and investment especially since Microsoft took over. First of all, there is no logical reason to remove the time feature for all your numbers unless the people you call are in your same time zone. Second, they put so many barriers to entry for their service support emails that you do what I think they want you to do - give up. Third, there does not seem to be any adults in charge. You make a comment on the community site and instead of providing answers they now want to hand out trophies or kudos for contribution. This may be hard for snowflakes to hear so a trigger warning. What you might want to do is upgrade your business acumen so that it is easy to do business with your site.
    Last, the FAQ process is useless. One example. Type in "how to find the date I first signed up for Skype?" No where I can find including my profile but Skype's asked you that question in order to request support help along with six to ten other items. Why?
    Last but not least. for all the money you pay for not Skype calls over time, you would think it would be easy to print out a log on the calls. Good Luck. Time to know that the hype in Skype is just that - hype.

    • Rob Nightingale
      April 25, 2017 at 3:18 pm

      I think the support for all Microsoft products is equally bad, unfortunately.

  78. SkypeNowSucks
    April 11, 2017 at 8:18 pm

    "...what frustrated you so much about Skype to make you start searching for alternatives?"
    The fact that they decided to suspend my account this morning because I won't give them my DOB, cell number, etc. which they have no right to have.
    I only found out when new friends tried to look me up and said there was no such user. Logged on, found out I have been suspended. Tried to reinstate, not allowed unless I cough up my PII - Personally Identifiable Information (you know, the stuff you're supposed to keep secure?)
    I was one of the very first users way back a dozen or so years ago. I'm suddenly not valid? And, there's no way you could think I'm under 13 when I have been using you for 13(ish) years. So it's not a keeping track of minors issue...
    So, once again, MicroSucks buys something just to ruin it.

    • Rob Nightingale
      April 25, 2017 at 3:17 pm

      This seems to be a common complaint. Sort it out Microsoft!

  79. Stephanie
    April 6, 2017 at 5:56 pm

    I am just so over Skype. When I first found it in 2005, I was over the moon. It was a lifesaver when I did a teacher exchange program and ended up in Riga, Latvia for a year. Since then, I have lived in Germany, and I rely on it heavily. I like the idea of having a U.S. phone number that anyone in the U.S. can reach me at.

    I have tried to overlook the problems for years, but they just keep multiplying and seem to have started when Microsoft acquired the company. Sometimes it just rings and rings and rings for a caller, and they never get to leave a voicemail. More than half the time, the phone doesn't ring on my Windows 8.1 phone. I cannot listen to the voicemail I do manage to get on my phone because Skype doesn't support voicemail on Windows 8.1 phones. What the heck is up with that? Insane. And now, for the past two days, my phone does not ring at all on ANY device. It rings and goes to a voicemail message that is not the one I recorded, but a generic one with a foreign accent. Anyone calling would think they'd reached the wrong number. Skype's reply...do you want us to refund you for your phone number or escalate the issue.

    I have pretty much had it and am looking for something that gives me the ability to have a U.S. phone number attached to it. That's a requirement. When I find the right thing, adios Microsoft.

    Looked into Wire.com, but they don't have an app for my phone.

    • Rob Nightingale
      April 25, 2017 at 3:17 pm

      I've had a lot of similar problems, with making calls, and adding new contacts. This is the issue with companies that once had a near monopoly. They relax, forget to innovate, and before they know it, they have a massively outdated product.

  80. Jake
    April 6, 2017 at 3:22 am

    Skype used to be perfect. Since the worlds richest man has owned it (Bill Gates) it has cut me off every five minutes and there is no live support. Its now dow graded to junk status.

    • Rob Nightingale
      April 25, 2017 at 3:16 pm

      Yep. I avoid it wherever I can.

  81. Matt
    April 5, 2017 at 5:21 pm

    They just dropped the local time feature from each contact. Something about privacy. Wi many international contacts and many of them flying hither and yonder, you want to make sure you are not bothering them in the middle of the night wherever they are.

    • Rob Nightingale
      April 25, 2017 at 3:15 pm

      I didn't know this. Sounds like another stupid move from Skype...

  82. john
    April 5, 2017 at 4:51 am

    Skype just keeps getting harder and harder to use, especially since Microsoft got it. Its completely not user friendly. Maybe if you use it every day you can know where all the hidden features are. Hope to find a good alternative.

    • Rob Nightingale
      April 25, 2017 at 3:14 pm

      Yea. I think they're gradually improving the UX, but it's WAY behind its alternatives.

  83. Nikky
    April 5, 2017 at 1:52 am

    I'm abandoning skype for the simple reason that it causes my CPU on a brand new, 2 month old computer, to run at 98% consistently. It makes playing even basic games, or watching netflix, with my boyfriend... a very tedious task, considering it lags because it can't process everything, and I end up having to say "What?" 300 times before i get the full sentence without it breaking up. I'm tired of it picking up the faintest background noise and amplifying the volume to 30000%, and the fact that with each "Update" They release it seems to get worse. I've relied on skype for years, and only noticed the problems getting increasingly bad to the point of being unbearable in the past 5 months or so. R.I.P Skype :( still trying to decide on an alternative to go with.

    • Rob Nightingale
      April 25, 2017 at 3:14 pm

      Oh wow, that's strange. I'd check that your PC doesn't have any malware etc, that could be affecting its CPU usage.

  84. Anon
    April 4, 2017 at 11:47 pm

    I concur with Louis, at March 21, 2017 at 1:23 pm. Skype updated itself, locked me out until I created a Microsoft account. Then demanded 24 hours for me to verify the anonymous account, that I have a valid password for was indeed mine. I don't like to put myself out there, I don't want the world to know where I live, what I do, it was merely so my family could contact me.

    looks like WhatsApp is getting my business.

    • Rob Nightingale
      April 25, 2017 at 3:13 pm

      This sounds like a nightmare. That being said, I much prefer Viber to WhatsApp! :)

  85. Yolanda Lindeque-Strauss
    April 3, 2017 at 7:31 am

    I'm only switching because Skype required me to do an update and in the process doesn't work anymore. I have Skype 6.14 and it's forcing me to update to 7.33 but while 7.33 is installing it says that there is an error in uninstalling 7.33 ... I've searched for a solution and tried a few but it's useless. So, I've done something I don't easily do. I've given up.

    • Rob Nightingale
      April 3, 2017 at 12:47 pm

      Which alternative did end up choosing?

  86. David
    March 30, 2017 at 8:13 pm

    Skype customer service has to be the worst in the world. It is impossible to get a direct answer from anyone. Their help forums send you around in a circle just waiting yours time.
    My wife was locked out of her account and she cannot answer enough of there security questions to allow to be reset by the Skype website- basically " Computer say No"
    I shall abandon Skype and will be persuading my friends, family and business associates to follow suit

    • Rob
      March 31, 2017 at 2:25 pm

      I've experienced the same thing. Nightmare.

  87. Roberto Ghiotto
    March 29, 2017 at 7:23 pm

    The latest version of Skype doesn't work with my version of Windows. So I downloaded an older version. As soon as I connected, this message appeared:
    "You've been disconnected because you're using an old version of Skype. click here to download the latest version".
    Pretty much a "Catch-22" sort of situation

    • Rob
      March 31, 2017 at 2:25 pm

      I don't want to be the one to say it, but... "typical Microsoft".

  88. katesdad
    March 28, 2017 at 2:39 pm

    skype belongs to microshit,,that is the prob.no customer service..

    • Rob
      March 31, 2017 at 2:26 pm

      Fair enough ;)

  89. john disney
    March 26, 2017 at 9:23 am

    the bill gates touch
    a nasty mixture of arrogance, insensitivity, greed, and stupidity

  90. MG
    March 24, 2017 at 7:46 pm

    They are apparently easily hacked.
    I don't use Skype daily, but once every few weeks or months I have a need to make voice call over IP.
    In the last year every time I have attempted to get on I have had to go through the foolishness IDing myself and changing my password sometimes twice in one day or two or three days in a row.
    It is painfully time consuming and often still leaves me with no service of poor service. But just wait till you attempt to close your account. That is an even more painful waste of my time again. Skype and microsoft appear to have absolutely no concern for my needs as a customer and consumer of their products.
    Then when it is all done they say you have succeeded in closing your account it will be closed in 60 days. So it is apparently OK with Microsoft & Skype to let the hackers that have hacked my account have free run of my account for another month or so to consume my balance on account and whatever else they are doing with my account.
    It is infuriating. I have been a PC and therefore microsoft user for more then 20 years, now a Mac user for the last 3 or 4 years. Mac is not perfect, but customer service with microsoft does not exist and I have always gotten a person on the phone with me from Apple even on devices that are 2, 3 and 4 years old. Bye, Bye Skype and microsoft.

    • Rob
      March 31, 2017 at 2:27 pm

      Well I hope one of these alternatives helps!

  91. Gail Roberts
    March 23, 2017 at 5:45 pm

    I have just given up with Skype - their customer service is a joke - it's impossible to call them and the chat line is pathetic.
    They used to be good but now that Microsoft have taken over it is just totally hopeless.

    • Rob
      March 31, 2017 at 2:28 pm

      Did you try one of these alternatives? What do you think?

  92. Mike
    March 21, 2017 at 8:53 pm

    I am abandoning Skype because it blocks my account for no legitimate reason, claiming that it has detected suspected activity. This is absolutely wrong. I am a professional in Computer Systems Security, and my password conforms to the highest security standards. As I see it, Skype does this only to force their users to give out their mobile phone numbers. So sad that Microsoft has decided to completely ruin this product and their users' trust in it.

    • Rob
      March 31, 2017 at 2:29 pm

      Could it be them getting confused with you using a VPN or something?

  93. Louis
    March 21, 2017 at 1:23 pm

    After wasting a day, I am abandoning Skype as it forces you to link to a Microsoft account, if you have an old skype account, one cannot unlink that from your Microsoft acc(I checked this with support), so you have to create a new Microsoft account, BUT you cannot use just any old email address to create a Microsoft acc, no no, its got to be a generic domain such as Gmail(not a work domain). So then create a email for the sole purpose of creating a MS acc for the sole purpose of creating Skype acc....and if the Gmail insist on a recovery cell then you need aphone as well. Geez MSoft!

    • Rob
      March 31, 2017 at 2:29 pm

      Yep. This is a pretty ridiculous set up...

  94. under
    March 19, 2017 at 11:59 am

    terrible breath/background noise, I have to cut the sound of my gf's screen most of the time, except when she has actually something meaningful to say!!

    • Rob
      March 31, 2017 at 2:30 pm

      Which alternative have you found has the best quality?

  95. Virginia
    March 13, 2017 at 3:16 pm

    Skype has been making automatic re-dial calls for some time on my cell, and no indication a call is happening unless I'm lucky enough to try to make a second call to different party & get the message 'already on a call'. There seems to be no solution to this from skype forums ... thanks so much for these excellent-sounding options!

  96. parag
    March 12, 2017 at 6:38 am

    skype does not work on windows 10 os.

    • Yolanda Charles
      April 12, 2017 at 5:47 pm

      I have 10 on a Surface 4 and skype works...it just sucks. (See my comments)

  97. Aturo
    March 11, 2017 at 1:20 pm

    skype cannot find api-ms-win-crt-runtime-l1-0.dll anymore. I installed all and everything, cleaned up even the registry. Nothing helps.
    The old version on an XP laptop is still running fine.
    I can also not use the online skype (MS explorer), because skype stopped detecting the webcam: Black image on my side. The others can see and hear me, I hear them too but cannot see me and not them.
    Had skype re-intsalled many times in the past, nearly any update produced new problems instead of solving problems.
    Skype is not working in Opera anymore.
    Enough

  98. Russirish
    March 11, 2017 at 1:43 am

    I hate to update or upgrade software. I particularly hate to be forced to do it in order to continue using the software, and I particularly hate being forced to do it by Microsoft.
    Microsoft just forced me to install the new version of Skype. I could no longer login to Skype without installing the new Microsoft version. So, sadly, I am now looking to replace Skype.

  99. Jim Henderson
    March 10, 2017 at 7:55 am

    needing a Microsoft account to use the Android app

  100. scabrone
    March 9, 2017 at 8:24 am

    Skype continual forced updates. I was happy with older version but now the new version refuse to work on old hardware. The new owner microshit company force us to buy new computer for using for basic operations like talk on skype.
    Why is necessary to buy an new computer or to install win 10 shit for that ?
    This is usual microsoft bullshit to take our money for nothyng.
    Microsoft is not a company, is a criminal organization.

  101. Misneachail
    March 8, 2017 at 9:31 am

    Freaking nightmare updates that will only work if you have windows 10. Files after files after files missing...just download this link. Oooops, you have another file missing. Spend countless hours scouring for the solution only to realize the option is NOT TO USE SKYPE.

  102. Johnno
    March 7, 2017 at 2:28 pm

    Problems with Skype are multiplying .. The common one all along has been call dropouts and poor picture quality, probably from congestion .. Video calls to my partner overseas are precious, so it's frustrating .. but more recently our calls drop out when advertising appears - does that mean they are too tight with band-width? .. Another call dropped when Skype sent an ad for its update - which I had already seen .. and lately the updates won't load properly, and I have to delete the previous version first - but even then I get error messages. Yet another problem is hundreds of junk files that suddenly accumulate whenever I'm on Skype, anything from 40 to 1800, and as fast as I dump them they come back - my cleanup program calls them "privacy problems" (?) .. a new issue lately: when my partner tries to call me, the answer button is not active and I can't answer. I'm over Skype .. it's a dud.

  103. Grumble
    March 6, 2017 at 1:43 am

    Skype for linux no longer does screenshare. Another MS smart upgrade idea.

    Whilst these alternatives seem fine, they lack the ability to scroll / search messages. As a freelance IT person, I often need to search for something discussed in chat 'last week'. None of these offer that. I want to communicate from my desktop (Mobile apps are nice but not suitable for the office or at 3am or when you touchtype or need to screenshare work or swap files)

    20 years ago I had ICQ and others. Somebody made a dashboard that would connect to all your accounts so it was seamless when you were chatting. We need that again.

    I can email anyone - whether you are in a different country or use Outlook or webmail - no difference to me. THAT is what we need in 2017 'messaging'. I want to chat, call, send files and screenshare with ANYONE on any OS using any client they like.

    Surely not rocket surgery.

  104. darrin k long
    March 3, 2017 at 4:02 am

    heres an idea. bring back the old yahoo messenger. where as you could chat with anybody around the world. and for free. that was the best message app on the net. but somebody at yahoo decided to get rid of all the open chat rooms. IDIOT.....................................

  105. Bill Brown
    March 2, 2017 at 8:42 pm

    Skype continual forced updates. I was happy with older version. Not so much with the new fangled version.

  106. Paul Loewenthal
    March 2, 2017 at 2:16 pm

    Skype does not feel intuitive. Too much hassle. Prefer Google's Duo. Trying to get as many of my friends to use it too.

  107. Greg O'Neill
    March 2, 2017 at 5:55 am

    Skype have now screwed up screen sharing where you can hear each other but when you play a movie or program the other can see the picture and cannot hear it. Also the translator is fine with typing but now has a feature where it talks and gets it wrong and there seem no way to deactivate the voice option without turning the whole thing off, so your typing while on a video call is not understandable. They should not try to fix something that is not broken , which ends out breaking it.

  108. Robert
    February 28, 2017 at 4:29 pm

    Whatsapp has an extremely restrictive approach
    You mobile MUST have a data connection, you can ONLY use it on TWO devices (absolute BS) and the other person MUST be in your mobile contacts.

    If the one person i use it for switched to something else I WOULD DROP IT LIKE A WET TURD.

  109. Seat Battle Fan
    February 26, 2017 at 7:53 pm

    I miss the games Skype used to have. Once microsoft got their mittens on it, the games were taken out. My friend overseas and I loved to play Sea Battle (obviously their version of Battleship which had audio and video effects ...so much fun) plus many others. Why does anything microsoft says it will improve just ends up turning the program into garbage. We're STILL trying to find a replacement. So far, any Sea Battle games we've found doesn't have the great audio/video effects. Also we want the program for desktop or at least, web based). Great article, by the way.

    • Rob Nightingale
      February 27, 2017 at 9:09 am

      Luckily, Facebook messenger has some secret games you can play!

      • Sea Battle Fan
        February 28, 2017 at 3:40 am

        God, Rob, you're gonna make me get a Facebook account now, aren't you? HA! I've been avoiding that like the plague (being the privacy/big brother's watching worrier that I am), however, if I look into it and find my game in there, I just may have to bite the bullet (false identity, anyone?). Either way, thanks very much for the suggestion, Rob. I will definitely look into it.

  110. Paul S
    February 25, 2017 at 8:08 pm

    Its time to bring others over to the non-skype of your choice! In a couple of weeks, Skyprosoft insists that I agree to the new terms of service - which are TOTALLY unacceptable. The privacy they claim to respect must only apply to my firstborn, because they now claim free access to any information they can get from anywhere and the freedom to use it anyway they want. My software won't be supported.

    No Thank You.

    Unseen.is also has nearly full service. Though some features are free, its pay per year or per lifetime. Great privacy, encrypted, and used by many journalists to get material out of oppressive countries with thorough censorship. Ya don haveta be paranoid to want privacy.

    • Rob Nightingale
      February 27, 2017 at 9:09 am

      Thanks for the info, Paul!

  111. Markus
    February 23, 2017 at 5:40 pm

    I abandoned Skype long time ago but it seems that Skype can't abandon me - Skype is still bundled with Microsoft office as Skype for business and mostly annoying you can't delete your Skype account no matter how hard you try (no delete account option and the customer service can't delete it for you either).

    • Rob Nightingale
      February 27, 2017 at 9:08 am

      Urgh. Damn, that sucks!

  112. AC
    February 23, 2017 at 8:33 am

    Skype is old tech now. it has problems using on ios multiple devices if they are on different ios versions. Some of them ring, some not. The Worst thing is sometimes none of them rings and you get "missed call" message.

    It has messaging and group functions mostly not usable. sit in front of computer and talk days are over.

    I used skype for last 4 years (with paid credit and phone number option) for international calls between EU and Canada (with too much time difference) and I lost too much money because of missed calls. Whoever tells me "let's skype" I say "no".

    • Rob Nightingale
      February 27, 2017 at 9:08 am

      They can't even be bothered putting together a decent way for people to use Skype on Chromebooks!

  113. Vm
    February 23, 2017 at 8:01 am

    The quality of sound and interface that he so many annoying features. I have moved to Viber 2 years ago.

    • Rob Nightingale
      February 27, 2017 at 9:07 am

      Yea, I abandoned Skype a while back, the call quality is just so low.

  114. Dynora Eserin
    February 22, 2017 at 3:08 pm

    all these apps require your contacts share the same app. so for me its Skype for the PC and whatsapp for the phone. Not interested in migrating contacts or getting my friends to install yet another app on their phones.

    • Rob Nightingale
      February 27, 2017 at 9:07 am

      Some of them don't, as mentioned in the article.

  115. X
    February 10, 2017 at 8:26 pm

    i want to toss a few cuss words in the air at Microsoft. Skype has been pestering me about updating, i've been ignoring it. Finally my password stopped working to get into Skype. It's been the same for years. i reset the password and the new password wouldn't work. The update pop ups were popping more. i was still trying to ignore them. This morning i tried the password and it kept rejecting it saying it was wrong. Out of frustration i clicked to update Skype, now my password works.

    i'm an IT pro (20+ years) and have seen issues with updates. i'm not a big fan of constantly updating. i haven't done a system update on my main workstation in over a year. The system couldn't be running better. Numerous times i've had a bad update stop my workflow and require lots of time to troubleshoot the problems that came with an update. So much for working at that point in time, have to fix stuff, WTF. If your work is pressed for time it doubles the frustration.

    i don't like being sculpted by Microsoft. i've used their products for years. Numerous times over the years, Microsoft finally comes out with a new configuration for the OS that i started using years earlier. In other words, Microsoft was lagging on a better way to configure the OS, but i had the option to adjust it for better workflow. With the current trend of Microsoft, they are locking down the OS and preventing us for customizing it for better usage/workflow. They are limiting us to their vision and taking away the options for us to implement our own potentially better ways.

    By 2023, i'm pretty sure i'm moving away from Microsoft. i haven't a thoroughly thought out a plan how, but i'm motivated and experienced enough to do it. i have many clients that come to me for computer needs. Not only am i trying to figure out how i can move myself away from Microsoft, but also a way for every client i have.

    Microsoft, i don't mind paying for OSes and other services, but when the quality of those services are turning to crap and ads, even in pro environments, it becomes time for the world to have a new pro alternative.

  116. Paull R
    February 4, 2017 at 1:57 am

    Couple of comments: Alternative service not mentioned & My reason for dumping Skype.

    Service: Unseen at unseen.is has encrypted voice, email, and other services. Some free. Their major goal is security between users - especially journalists in difficult places. Lifetime membership available. U.S. Company based in Iceland where privacy is honored.

    Microsoft "privacy": I'm looking around because the way microsoft "values your privacy" is by plainly stating and specifically naming every possible bit of information they might be able to find in personal files even on device. None of my businesses or clients will use Skype because it is so insecure. Why did the Swedes have to sell it !!!

    Skype announced I will not be able to use the service unless I upgrade (something they can't seem to do on my Mac for years). Their prices keep climbing and their attempts to plug all possible routes to privacy have finally succeeded. I understand Microsoft's stated aim is to have all their software subscriber based with them in total control of data and upgrading. Often, their patches and upgrades cause failure in programs AND operating systems. Real problem here...

    (okay, so I'm skeptical of power hungry control freaks)

  117. H. Positive
    January 31, 2017 at 6:40 am

    Is there a similar alternative for Skype, named Emo ( Eno)?
    Thanks

  118. DaveB
    December 31, 2016 at 4:53 pm

    I've been using Skype almost since the beginning of it. I'd forgotten that MS bought it 5 years ago but it was brought home to me the other day when I wanted to close a MS account (which I never really wanted anyway) and was told by MS that if I closed the account I would lose any Skype credit I had. As it is now poorer quality than it was years ago (dropped calls, noise, a complete disregard for its users (who made it what it is) it's time for a change. Hopefully enough people will stop using it that MS will notice. Although I'm currently using Windows 10 (which in itself isn't too bad if you turn off a lot of stuff) I use Open Office, Firefox, Gmail and none of the MS stuff that can't be uninstalled or disabled. As I don't like Apple (as bad as MS) nor Android I'll buy my next machine without an OS and run Linux. MS, Apple and Android have become far too Big Brother and controlling, it's time for us to revolt, stop being herded like sheep, and try the alternatives.

  119. Econ Dude
    December 31, 2016 at 2:38 am

    Skype became a shit program, need an alternative

  120. Angela
    December 22, 2016 at 5:04 pm

    As predicted, Skype once it was "monetized" has morphed into something not serving a purpose, and there is no way to talk anyone, case in point, I made error in skype info so my account thinks I am a young person, nope, an old fart (67), and am locked out and after 3 hours on chat line back & forth, they could not simply set my account back to what it was few hours prior to the "issue", I than wanted to have a new account but it would not allow entry of an account name and que for password but rather, it used my email!,

    I do not see any options to set up an account as in the past and now, MS is simply pushing MS account along with Skype account, thus, for me, this is not appropriate for many reasons,

    editorial comment:

    seems that if folks did not accept being herded, we could be heard but with billions of dollars involved, not one of us matters to MS so it can do as it pleases, so if MS does care, it will see this message and perhaps give me some option to talk to some human other than some chat person who has scripted messages and is not empowered and is simply doing as he or she is being told to do, monopolisitic businesses such as MS not by design but by the very nature of their business model causes issues for the customer but when the customer is not united, he or she is subject to being treated as MS wishes, and in this case, they simply poop on me and others,

    alterntives to Skype for business:

    alternative for us is GoToMeeting but it is not a messaging platform such as was Skype, Skype today is now part of the monolithic monetization model wherein any and all issues of privacy, customer service , etc. are irrelevant as the money rolls in and thus, that is the ruling force, this is not fault of MS per as once humans are under the control of any one entity, either church, state or business enterprise, the day to day masses lose out, so, in a practical sense, for us, we will simply abandon using Skype as in reality, business do not use it as the ports are rather open, and thus, a portal to the bad guys,

    can you help me out?: angela@amsainc.com

    if anyone has suggestions on how to contact MS Skype folks, let me know, or if you know how to set up an account like in the old days than let me know, office phone is 989 662 0377, I I simply want an account on Skype, nothing to do with MS account or anything else to do with MS, give it a password, and use it for phone calls and conference calling with a few folks

    Angela

  121. shawn
    December 19, 2016 at 4:28 am

    I had bought a smart TV primarily to chat with my relatives on it as big screen and the experience was brilliant, but since Skype(Microsoft just got up one morning and decided to remove it, what a shame) has completely removed itself from smart TV domain, I am looking forward to some other option which I can enjoy Skype again. please help

  122. Jitsi too confusing for basic video users
    November 17, 2016 at 4:21 am

    It's been five years since this article was written, so it's pretty overdue for an update.

    Also, for the average person looking for a Skype alternative due to ongoing B.S. issues, eg, now you have to have an outlook account if you want to setup via email (screw that), Jitsi looks enticing. But, Jesus Christ, what an ordeal trying to find instructions on how to set it up for video calls. For such an advanced bunch of developers, their instructions are sparce at best and overly technical at worst. All I want is a step by step process of what to install and what to configure. No such luck.

  123. Pete
    September 20, 2016 at 1:54 pm

    It seems that Skype no longer wants my money, whatever I try I can't put any credit on the account, so, gooodbye skype.

  124. Kellyrochford
    September 12, 2016 at 7:48 am

    I had been with Skype from nearly the start, after ownership transferred it started to go downhill. I have very unreliable connections, even though I have good bandwidth. Many calls are made up of multiple re connects, due to drop outs. Many times it is ringing out my end, and I later find that at the other end no call was received. My subscription funds just leaked away gradually, when I was not making paid calls. Customer service were always very anti customer and blamed me. The latest is a message to say that I had 1 month to make a paid call or my balance would be cleared to zero. I immediately made a paid call, to my own landline with call logged. They still cleared out my credit to zero. I WILL NOT SUBSCRIBE TO SKYPE AGAIN. I used to have paid phone numbers and various other subscription services, Skype have driven me away, I did not just pack up and leave, I was driven out.

    • bob
      September 18, 2016 at 6:30 pm

      yea

  125. Adrian
    August 4, 2016 at 11:44 pm

    I'm very disappointed with Skype. They don’t care about Customer Service.
    I’ve been with them during more than 10 years with the same subscription and because of a problem with the Credit Card I had loaded (it expired), instead of asking me to change the payment method, they cancelled my subscription (blaming me because of my problem) and they ask me to book a new subscription that is about 8% more expensive.
    It is not a problem of money, Skype could have told me “we increase the price for the subscription”, but not. It is a horrible Customer Service attitude. They use the problem I have to blame me about it. They are saying “the system do not allow me to reactivate you subscription”. The “system”? The system belong to Skype, if the system is so rigid that is not allowing to take care of your customers, Skype should modify it. Skype is a technology company and must have hundred of programmers, so I’m sure one can modify a program that is not allowing you to reactivate a subscription that was active for more than 10 years. I told them, take your time to solve the problem, I’m not in a rush, but no way. They say that it is not possible.
    This is an good example of how a company can make feel bad to a loyal customer.

  126. SkypeStuck
    August 2, 2016 at 2:43 am

    All I know is that I've been using Skype in the last 5 years and it's getting worse comparing with the earlier period when I first start to use Skype. Skype video conferencing is constantly crashed. The forced update newer versions from Skype keep on crashing. I could not stop Skype from automatically update to a newer version. I have tried many different ways to no avail. Is anything out there better than what Skype (Microsoft) offering? I would like some video conferencing s/w that is more reliable than Skype. Everything was fine until Microsoft has its hands in it.

  127. Carlo
    July 1, 2016 at 12:29 pm

    Not Skype availability on TV? Time to jump ship- move to a competitor! I am ticked! Being using Skype since it was made available and now this! So much for loyalty! They are turning their backs on their loyal base!

    • Helen
      July 24, 2016 at 4:44 pm

      I totally agree. I bought a smart tv so I could skype with family and less than 3 months later they took away the tv availability. I'm ticked off and looking for another option.

  128. Bob Renshaw
    July 1, 2016 at 7:24 am

    Can anyone advise what is a good alternative to skype. It no longer supports skype on TV's and I am really annoyed at this and the spin used to explain why they are no longer supporting skype on TV's. Bob R

    • Helen
      July 24, 2016 at 4:45 pm

      Me too!

  129. Johnny
    June 11, 2016 at 8:03 pm

    Does anyone know an option or program where I can buy an unlimited subscription to the USA with a USA phone #? That is all I want, nothing crazy.
    Skype used to be so awesome at this option. Now each time I try to do it, they block my account and say it violates their terms. They advertise this is what they do, they take my money, and then they block me.
    Customer service is a joke. They refer you to the "community" each chance they get. There is no number to call and your lucky to get someone on IM chat. However, when that happens all they say is they have to forward your issue on to their superior, who may or may not get back to you.

    • Dave
      August 10, 2016 at 4:54 pm

      google talk will call usa and canada numbers for free if you're in usa or canada.

  130. Xonerea
    May 27, 2016 at 2:55 pm

    Beware of Hangouts. On Computers It REQUIRES chrome. You don't need to have chrome running to use hangouts, but it's still a requirement. Hangouts also has very large memory usage. 7 processes running on task manager just to use it and that's WITHOUT the browser being open during use (at least on win 10).

    Google Talk was beta for Google Hangouts. Don't bother trying to use Talk exclusively as... it simply won't happen. Talk was great but is no more. And Hangouts can sometimes be a memory hogging nightmare.

    MSN messenger/windows live/windows messenger whichever you prefer to call it was also integrated into Skype. Skype also has some severe security issues that were supposedly addressed but the unlocked backdoor into your system is still there. It's unlikely most people will get hit with it, but it's the reason I refuse to have Skype on any computer I own.

  131. Arman
    May 6, 2016 at 5:25 am

    Wire is the best !!!!!!

  132. Gareth
    April 14, 2016 at 4:37 pm

    SKYPE USED TO BE EXCELLENT, THE CALLS WERE CRYSTAL CLEAR, video was clear and unpixilated... but since Microsoft bought Skype the quality has plumetted! Now it takes up to 13 seconds for voice transmission to reach the other side, and another 13 seconds to hear what the respondent says... and video link is impossible. Yet Skype still hoggs masses of bandwidth. We had a service, I used to subscribe to Skype, make use of it for conference calls... I have not topped up my skype account for ages as I the quality of pay for service has become so low that I am not using it. I may even ask for a refund of the funds I have left.

  133. deep
    March 22, 2016 at 7:17 pm

    Dear Mr. Lee,

    I strongly disagree with you. Tell me one app which gives you unlimited calling on a monthly subscription basis. There is none. Skype is by far the best option available. There ar too many flaws in Skype but yet it is the best app so far. Hence please don't give misleading information to the users of the internet.

  134. Zo
    February 22, 2016 at 11:14 pm

    should you not forget FB video calls. Now on webRTC it makes it the choice as sadly FB is similar to skype in terms of "everyone has it"

    • Rama
      June 4, 2016 at 4:50 pm

      FB? Not! It records all your calls. :(

  135. Ben
    February 8, 2016 at 12:44 am

    Make sure to mention VSee. It uses half of the bandwidth of Skype and supports many features.

  136. Rose Foreman
    January 29, 2016 at 8:00 pm

    I tried everything to make Skype work on my new computer. Ended by their techs saying I needed to add another program [fee] to make it work. NO THANKS. Now wanting to find better replacement.

  137. Randy Schornack
    December 30, 2015 at 3:56 am

    I have tired to get Skype without infections. However, this appears to be beyond the scope of Microsoft to rain in a bunch of coyboys. The security folks at Microsoft are out of touch with the problems they face and the contanmination of the skype servers. Five download attempts finally produced a skype load without contamination. Then updates came and withit viruses and hack software add ons.
    No I do not care for the bowser add ons and the failed attempts of skype developeres to push crap. The fools fail to understand they have an obligation to Microsoft and no one else. Keep skype pure and I might tryit again until then kiss offl

  138. Anonymous
    August 17, 2015 at 10:50 am

    The best alternative for home users is LINE , Japanese software with all the perks and also visually appealing. It works literally on every platform, Linux workaround might be a bit more tricky. Here is a link

    http://line.me/en/download

    Unfortunately all VOIP , video communication software does require reasonable data transfer, so don't blame application for poor performance if you area has bad reception.

  139. Anonymous
    June 11, 2015 at 4:01 am

    Microsoft has an amazing ability to screw up and destroy anything that the users like or enjoy that they acquire - Skype, Hotmail, MSN Messenger, etc. Window 8 is pushing the boundaries of how much you can annoy the users, adopting everything I detest about Apple from Apple ID (Windows Account), locking in MS Office, Skype and so on......... extremely frustrating!

  140. Gen Light
    June 4, 2015 at 7:28 am

    Sadly, MS (Microsoft)) is doing itself no favours these days. Skype was really good until MS started to "upgrae" it. Now it is a cumbersome mess. Because of the way MS is "upgrading" its offerings these days, I no longer trust it as an organisation for helping me work "my way" (and not working THEIR way). So maybe even the operating systems from MS Windows is becoming largely a commercial override on my life. I say all this after years of still using Windows for work and for use in my long retirement. In fact the whole internet now is becoming a commercial ocerride of of the lives of ordinary people. Watch out Microsoft -- there are options out there to all your ways of making money off your previously valued clients. It might be altogether better to go back to before the days of Windows. ?!

  141. David
    April 18, 2015 at 12:11 am

    Also, you forgot Apple's Facetime.

  142. David
    April 18, 2015 at 12:08 am

    Like other Google "products" Voice is shovelware. I couldn't get it to work.

  143. Rokinah Noor
    April 9, 2015 at 8:32 am

    Has been using Skype for several years. However, since they made +- $US 30 (NOK 200) disappear in a bank transaction late last year, we are not on friendly terms. ( I guess, since they ignore my attempts to get an explanation for this).
    Nice to know that there are alternatives.

  144. phybot
    April 7, 2015 at 1:26 pm

    I had been using Skype for over 12 years, and just decided to delete my account (if possible!). My account was illegally accessed and my entire balance used to make calls to Cameroon. For two weeks, I have been trying to get Skype to simply tell me how my account was accessed (whether there were repeated tries at guessing my password or whether the person logged in on their first try, or whether they hacked their way into their systems some other way). The process has been infuriating. IMPOSSIBLE to get an answer, their constant reply : "We are sorry for the inconvenience, however, Skype takes our customers' privacy and confidentiality very seriously, and therefore we cannot disclose this information due to our Skype Privacy Statement. This is the reason why we advised you to contact a member of the law enforcement agency with regards to your request." Can anyone else see the irony? ...And contacting the law enforcement to know whether someone illegally accessed my account on their first try? Seriously?... Avoid Skype at all cost.

  145. Peter
    March 17, 2015 at 10:10 pm

    skype app has disappear from Finlux SmartTV ...new owner: Microsoft delete it :(

  146. Allison
    March 15, 2015 at 1:27 am

    to be honest i can not believe NOT ONE SINGLE PERSON has mentioned that SKype TAKES and uses YOUR internet data stream, even if you are not USING Skype at that moment. I KNOW they do it VORACIOUSLY on cell phones, but i have not yet found a way to verify how much they do it on my PC. What I mean by this for the newbies is, when you install it, you agree that they can piggyback on your internet pipe to gain internet signal for other Skype users. So though YOU may only use it for an hour a day, Skype can use YOUR internet 24 hours a day. So if you have a limited data package as MOST cell phone users, and almost all Canadian home users do, they can and WILL use up you data limit. I currently am staying somewhere where i have VERY poor cell reception. I get ONLY one half of one bar signal. And I only have a mobile internet stick for internet right now. So I am unable to make online calls, I can only use skypes text feature...I just happened to have a page open the last few days that told me in real time how much data was going up n down my pipe. The friend I was speaking to is OFTEN slow to respond and can take 3-5 min to respond when i send him a text. I noticed that if he is responding within the first minute of me sending a text, like we are having an ACTIVE Skype text conversation, I get his response and he gets mine. The conversation goes on just fine. BUT, when he has these several minute delays in responding, Skype GRABS my internet pipe and HOGS it. The ohter night i monitored it and while my friend n I spoke I used all of 50mb data, up and down for one hour of TEXT ONLY conversation. BUT once they grabbed my pipe, I LITERALLY watched it eat up almost 250mb data in less than 45 min. Also leaving me with no ability to respond to my friend. Every text I sent was not going, they were all "pending" as my internet just kept on clocking away. ( When I had only used 100mb ALL DAY LONG using my pc for other things) I tested this theory a few days in a row, and discovered that YES they are hijacking my signal, and I am SURE most people have no clue it is going on. I DO know they do it on cell phones EVEN when you do not have Skype open... I am not sure if they do on PCs, but as best I can tell, they don't.. but it could simply be my limited connection preventing that. But my friend installed Skype on her cell phone last month JUST to text me, and low and behold Skype used 4 yes, FOUR GIGS of data... just in background data, she only texted me probably one 5 min conversation and closed the app when complete. SO BE AWARE OF HOW THESE COMPANIES USE YOUR INTERNET Bandwith... you can so easily get screwed. This is how i came upon this post is looking for someone to text thru who WONT hijack my ONE WHOLE HALF BAR of internet cpaacity! (Note, I AM a PAID skype user, with a PAID phone number AND a yr calling paid for to the USA... so one would think they would be TAKING signal from the freebies and giving it to ME, not the other way around!!)

  147. Debra
    February 23, 2015 at 3:58 pm

    HELP...all I want to do is call my grandchildren in Florida. They are very young and hard to understand when using the telephone. This way, if we can both see each other on our computers it will almost be like talking to them in person. Im not interested in any other features and I dont want my family in Florida to have to pay for the call. I am confused now as to which one of the many alternatives to Skype should I consider using...

    • helpful person
      February 22, 2017 at 7:41 pm

      Depending on what they would use for the call (iPhone, iPad, android, PC, Mac, etc.) you could use tox! It is completely free for both ends, no strings attached. Video calling currently only works on iOS devices (iPhone and iPad) and Windows. If this meets your needs, you can download it at tox.chat (be sure to download the right one for your device.)

  148. Debby
    February 16, 2015 at 3:41 am

    Is there any that work on an IPad?

    • Helen
      July 24, 2016 at 11:53 pm

      yes, face time.

  149. Richard McWolff
    February 8, 2015 at 10:15 pm

    So I have a video conference on Wed. They like Skype. I tried to like it but I just hate that program with a passion. So I uninstalled it and put up a note on the forums where we were getting things set up. Not sure if there is an app out there that will allow for one user to use Skype while another uses another VoIP program and both can sync together. Is there such a VoIP program out there?

  150. Andy
    January 17, 2015 at 8:49 am

    Skype was alright until Microsoft got involved. It seems they're now more interested in taking your money a selling your data than proving a useable service

  151. Tony
    January 15, 2015 at 9:59 pm

    Whilst I use Skype for work, I'm an online teacher, I much prefer 'Viber' another one you didn't add.

    Viber is stable, and as with anything to do with Microsoft Skype has become increasingly poor. Microsoft has always striven to produce 'over-engineered products' that generally lead to poor products for the end user.

    • Helen
      July 24, 2016 at 11:55 pm

      Can you use viber on the computer or smart tv or is it just for phones?

  152. cateline
    January 10, 2015 at 8:25 am

    Hi, Im looking for a service like this or skype that can be embedded into my site as if part of my site (design style etc), without having leave my site or open a seperate window to another company like skype, to any ideas?

  153. Barry
    December 21, 2014 at 8:40 pm

    message to

    the

    A message to Skype people.
    Every time you make an upgrade you make it worse no better why can't you get the basic's right and leave it alone, other wise your system would be wonderful also I find you are hard to get in contact with to explain my concern when I have any. Like when my computer crashed and I try to pick up where I left off Skype did not seem to understand or acknowledge my contact details that I had used earlier and responded that this information was already used by someone else and I couldn't have it. I am sure that this was mine from earlier. I find this very frustrating and confusing.

  154. megan
    December 12, 2014 at 10:21 pm

    Help please. So Skype let's u buy a land line number that's then connected to your app on your phone. So I give that number to my friend and they call it and it comes through on the app over the internet. Who else does this? The connection is crap cuts in an out a fuzzy. I really need another option. For Samsung galaxy 4

    • David V
      March 3, 2015 at 9:34 pm

      The Google Talk has this feature as well.

  155. Paul
    December 10, 2014 at 10:00 am

    I'm told there is a new one called Wire. I haven't tried it yet.
    I haven't uninstalled Skype yet but I stopped using it because the new versions didn't work at all on my computer (Mac) and the old version I went back and installed has stopped working now as well. I actually came online tonight looking for whether there is a decent mac-friendly version again yet, but instead I find all these alternatives to try out.
    Thanks everyone! :)

  156. Paul Rhimes
    February 6, 2013 at 10:18 am

    Have you tried LINE?

    It's the only one I know of that has at least most of the features of Skype and is also available on Windows 8. It doesn't have video chat, but it has calling, messaging and all of that stuff...

    http://www.trutower.com/line/

    • Tom
      February 27, 2013 at 4:16 pm

      I am looking for an extremely cheap way, hopefully less than $0.01 US per minute to make a conference call to (primitive) cellphones in Thailand. I can use my computer or my primitive cell phone.

    • paul
      September 6, 2016 at 3:34 pm

      Line has video chat

  157. anonymous
    December 23, 2012 at 10:33 am

    hats off to that person who has made this website. it might have taken lots of pain in researching to make this website. but beware microsoft is watching. first it will disable your website, then ruin your business. have you guys seen one thing? when you do google search like forum skype you get only results of skype forums on the top and you cannot put your views in other places and after seeing the first page people run away. because by that time either they forget what they came for and could not find what they wanted. So this is skype. And when you start using skype they disable your account under some reasons. whatever it is keep your good work.

  158. Danny
    December 14, 2012 at 12:44 am

    I am becoming disenchanted with Skype. I had subscribed ton them primarily for business calls and I have found that they do not not put through a lot of the 1-8xx-xxx-xxxx toll free numbers in Canada or The USA. What are the experiences of toll free numbers with the Skype alternatives,

    Danny

  159. Michael Nana
    December 12, 2012 at 12:53 am

    Reflap is another alternative. It's a web based voip video chat website. When ou register you create your personal call address and anyone that knows it can call you using your call address. http://www.reflap.com

    • Joel Lee
      December 12, 2012 at 10:35 pm

      That's a pretty cool concept. Thanks for bringing it to my attention. :D

    • Bob Swan
      February 21, 2013 at 10:59 am

      I like the idea but just played the first vid in their FAQ section ... have to say, sadly, that the sound and picture quality were poor. Is that meant to encourage us?

  160. ampimari
    November 5, 2012 at 9:56 am

    back to refer a comment of Paul -G
    I think what he meant and with a good point is
    that if i like to choose to use as provider lets say still government controlled now Skype or google hang out etc.
    but my friend uses lets say maybe Tango or any other open- source Voip provider
    I could not put them in my contact friends list and connect with them over voip

    This only landlines can do and you might be...maybe as well more protected from someone
    listening in and violating your privacy.

    it would be great if I could have my FREE choice of voip provider
    without pressing my friends to change as well!!!
    and see them in my contact list attached to the icon of THEIR FREE CHOSEN voip provider...

    Another sign that a FREE MARKET and FREE CHOICE is going down the hill
    nicely covered by entertainment chit chats etc

    Cool would be if all the open-source Voip Providers agree with each other
    setting up this possibility of INTEGRATION and COLLABORATION in between them as well
    and want to continue a FREE MARKET leaving their customers truly a FREE CHOICE.

  161. Raghav Gupta
    November 5, 2012 at 6:31 am

    Nice alternativees. Thanks for sharing

  162. Travis
    October 24, 2012 at 5:20 pm

    While I do primarily use SKype for it's HD quality (better than most alternatives), one other that I've found is Zoom.us. The great part about that is while you have to download the software, you DON'T have to log in to join a call. So the person initiating the call signs in (via Facebook/G+) and gets a link to send out to other people wanting to join. So far it's worked well for technically inept people like my parents/sister who aren't ready to sign up for a new service like G+ just to enjoy group video chat. Just a thought.

  163. Rajaa Chowdhury
    October 9, 2012 at 8:23 am

    I would rather TANGO and give SKYPE a skip. :P :D

  164. Tim Brookes
    September 14, 2012 at 2:31 am

    Hangouts here is probably the best of the bunch in terms of penetration. As others have pointed out my reliance on Skype is down to a few things, but mainly the fact that everyone already uses Skype. My parents know how to use it, it's great for talking internationally for free and the iPhone app works like a charm.

  165. Ian-Andrews
    September 13, 2012 at 9:55 pm

    To Skype Or Not To Skype....

    I'm Skype and I totally agree Skype used to have the un challenged guaranted number one slot.....HOWEVER......What has made me start to look for alternatives is its RECENT...???(2012 Anyways) STUPID CHANGE, whereby BOTH parties have to be connect at the same time to send/recieve a skype "Computer" text message.

    In the good old days you could send your message to your contact...

    EXAMPLE..........[ Sunday Fancy A Chat At 2pm ]
    EXAMPLE 2.......[ You say have a look at this link www>>Hyperlink Example ]

    The message would wait/stored until your contact next logged-on and then they would recieve it...BUT NOW you both have to be connected at the same time just to recieve OR send said message....Grrrrrr Grrrrr ^@@@%%^ <@

    And yes I know E-Mail exists but the Skype feature WAS quick, very quick and very good for "your" offline message delivery.

    My problem now is even if I do find something better than Skype, as Paul-G points out above.. I have to convince my contacts to also install that particular VOIP service.

    If you want to reply to my comment, imagine if you could only do so when we are both online AND connected to http://www.makeuseof.com at the same time....lol

  166. AP
    September 13, 2012 at 5:20 pm

    Most of my friends are Skype users , now I can recommend them other ones.

  167. Kathie Brune
    September 13, 2012 at 1:34 pm

    I'm going to have to check out Google Hangouts as I haven't tried it yet. Tango is pretty good, too, though.

  168. Freecycle Me
    September 12, 2012 at 10:47 am

    Thanks for this I will be conferencing on hangouts later!

  169. Curtis C.
    September 11, 2012 at 12:08 am

    Dell Voice is also one of them that you can use for free calling on your iPhone or iPod.

  170. Neil Harrington
    September 10, 2012 at 9:38 pm

    Skype stills works great for me, and it is still free. Screen sharing is great, too.

    • GoLinuxOrGoHome
      January 20, 2013 at 6:44 am

      doh! how's that screen sharing working out for ya now? M$ took it out as well a group calling and made it a pay feature...woohoo

      • Pieter
        January 25, 2013 at 4:53 pm

        I'm using screen share as we speak... still free, not a paid feature.

  171. Gaurav Rajak
    September 10, 2012 at 5:16 pm

    Fring too is good for mobile phones.

  172. Steve_007
    September 10, 2012 at 1:25 pm

    i personally support Brosix. It is great alternative to Skype. It is ad-free, free of charge and has much more pre-installed features than Skype. It does a great job !

  173. dwayne arthur
    September 8, 2012 at 12:10 pm

    Skype is pretty good ,I used it to replace my mom"s Magicjack that failed .
    Its pretty reliable too. I will try out these other programs that were mentioned.

  174. GrrGrrr
    September 7, 2012 at 7:53 pm

    Skype has its roots way deep, so it is almost impossible to replace it from #1 slot. The next best are Google & ooVoo in my view.

    Given the availability of Skype Phones (parents have one) it becomes very easy for me to call them, without them having to bring up the laptop, connect a headset, mic, etc.

  175. Bud
    September 7, 2012 at 6:31 pm

    Another is the Chinese "QQ." Only major problem is their site is ALL in Chinese with little to zero English versions or English "help" pages......and depending on the signal strengths, can be disruptive at times........

  176. Reý Aetar
    September 7, 2012 at 5:18 pm

    nimbuzz also is great

  177. Greg
    September 7, 2012 at 3:13 pm

    We use ooVoo at work. It has worked great for us so far.

  178. Shakirah Faleh Lai
    September 7, 2012 at 2:47 pm

    Love Hangout but most of my friends still use Skype they don't use Hangout yet.

  179. Kao Vang
    September 7, 2012 at 1:47 pm

    I don't have enough friends who would use Google services enough to use Hangouts. :) My in-law families like using ooVoo but personally, I wouldn't bother installing an app if there are web alternatives like Google's.

    • Happy
      September 8, 2012 at 2:04 am

      I totally agree!

  180. Chinmay Deshpande
    September 7, 2012 at 6:50 am

    Hangouts is great

    • gattolino
      September 7, 2012 at 8:35 am

      and you can register directally to youtube!

  181. Gerhard Tinned
    September 7, 2012 at 6:24 am

    The problem with all of them ... you have to get your friends to use it as well. That is the real tricky part on it! :-(

    • Paul-G
      September 7, 2012 at 9:20 am

      If you use a land-line or mobile you can call ANY other land-line or mobile.

      Until VOIP can do the same it will never get the take-up.

      • Tanguy Djokovic
        September 7, 2012 at 12:52 pm

        VOIP lets you call areound the world for free... which land line does not...
        Some might, but I've rarely seen a landline company say : call to china for free. it's more like 30c/min of calling

        Plus with Skype you can also call a land line, with for a very low fee, and even cellphones.

        • Paul-G
          September 7, 2012 at 1:23 pm

          I agree but how many VOIP services can call every other VOIP service?

          That is the issue that needs to be addressed. Without that key component it is like every land-line company and mobile service in the world being isolated.

        • Johnny5
          September 7, 2012 at 5:45 pm

          Using Talkatone, you can call any phone number in the US and Canada....for free. If you are not in the US or Canada...oh well.

        • Paul-G
          September 8, 2012 at 12:00 am

          Sorry Johnny5 but a lot of VOIP services can 'call out' to landlines.

          The key issue is - how many VOIP clients can call a VOIP user on another network? Can any of the above services call a user on a different VOIP service? How many can connect to ALL of the others?

        • Joseph
          September 22, 2012 at 6:14 pm

          Paul-G, if you embrace open standards (in this case, like SIP or XMPP/Jabber) then any software that can use that protocol can call any other program. It's Skype that has the proprietary protocol, which is the main reason not to use it.

  182. Johnny5
    September 7, 2012 at 2:42 am

    How did you miss Tango and Talkatone?

    • Joel Lee
      September 7, 2012 at 5:49 am

      There was a brief moment while writing this article that I lost my omniscience. Fortunately, it's returned since then.

  183. Johnny5
    September 7, 2012 at 2:21 am

    Not sure how you missed Tango and Talkatone.

    • Rob Nightingale
      February 27, 2017 at 9:06 am

      There are other options, but these are the ones I found to be the best alternatives :)