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Skype's been in the news recently due to its imminent takeover by Microsoft. Whether this will be a positive or negative move for the VoIP company remains to be seen, but what is certain is that the news has produced plenty of good jokes - and renewed interest in the internet phone app.

If you've ever searched for Skype on Softonic, you'll see that we have a bunch of versions - Skype, Skype for Business, Skype Portable, Skype Gold - not to mention all the versions that exist for different platforms. With so much to choose from, how do you know which Skype is right for you?

The standard Skype app is more than enough for the vast majority of users. Whether you're running it on Windows, Mac, Linux, Android, iPhone, Symbian, or Windows Mobile, there's a version for you, and with a relatively fast internet connection, you should have it downloaded and ready to call in minutes.

Skype Portable, obviously enough, is the no-install version of the standard program. It provides exactly the same features, but as you don't need to install it, it's perfect if you spend a lot of time working on computers that aren't yours, or if you are running a low-spec computer that you don't want to burden with large installations.

Skype Business is also a really popular download. This one, obviously enough, is designed for professionals, and can be rolled out in any situation, from a small home office to a multinational enterprise. When you get down to the basics, Skype for Business is fairly similar to the home package - Skype-to-Skype calls for free, instant messaging, small conference calls and screen sharing. Where it really differs is in the pay-for services it provides, and the business-wide roll-out help needed in the case of bigger companies.

There are also a selection of Skype toolbars that you can use to integrate the program into your browser or Office programs. Admittedly more recent versions of Firefox have some of this facility built in, but if you are using an older version, you might want to take a look at Skype Web Toolbar or Skype Office Toolbar. The former recognizes phone numbers and Skype Names on webpages, so that you can call with one click, while the latter does the same, but in Office documents, so you can IM and share documents without even leaving Word.

Commented

  • FewClues |
    04/06/11
    FewClues

    Which download is best - NONE! Now that Microsoft owns them nobody in their right mind will use Skype. Besides there are a dozen great open source versions. And with Google releasing their network last week - who needs Micro-skype?

    Or was this article just kissing up to Microsoft because they pay for them?

  • ciara |
    06/06/11
    ciara

    thanx all people here ok i'm salwa

  • thidaoo |
    07/06/11
    thidaoo

    i want to enter the skype member.

  • Matt Perkins |
    09/06/11
    Matt Perkins

    If your talking about the possibility of Skype being around just the official apps being removed then the best alternative is IMO.IM which is available for Windows, iOS and Android. It actually offers Skype. Only downside is there is no video or audio chat with it.

    If your looking for a Video or Audio chat alternative there are plenty. For mobile Fring is first to come to mind as it also offers group chat for both Android and iOS users. I don't like the fact you can't add individual users from other IM services like AIM or block non Fring users. Also if you jailbreak your iDevice and use themes, Fring will show an ad across the top of your iDevice once closed up.

    Jitsi is prolly the best desktop/laptop alternative as it offers video and audio chat across all platforms (except of course Skype)

    Hopefully though Microsoft won't shut down Skype or it's mobile apps. My main worry when I heard about Microsoft buying out Skype was it integrating Skype's technology into Windows Live Messenger then killing off Skype itself. We just have to hope it doesn't come to that.

  • Kashif Habib Uddin |
    22/07/11
    Kashif Habib Uddin

    I really like skype too much this is a new world

  • saphia silva |
    28/07/11
    saphia silva

    nice

  • qasim |
    31/07/11
    qasim

    very good

  • Nimer |
    03/08/11
    Nimer

    dear all, i have samsung omneia windows windoaws 6.1 mobile. can i make video call on skype frome my mobile? and witch best skype i can download for my mobile? thanks

  • TAHIR |
    10/08/11
    TAHIR

    I LIKE SKYPY BECAUSE IT IS INTERESTING

  • md.rafiq |
    10/08/11
    md.rafiq

    rafiq

  • M.Daud Yaqubi |
    11/08/11
    M.Daud Yaqubi

    it is really nice

  • nisar |
    15/08/11
    nisar

    i'm nisar from erode really good

  • thaaas3 |
    19/08/11
    thaaas3

    goooooooooood

  • manju bangalore |
    22/08/11
    manju bangalore

    it is really good

  • Gilberto |
    22/08/11
    Gilberto

    O Skype para o Nokia C3 com a plataforma S 40, nunca foi e nunca será desenvolvido o apps para ele. O Skype se "finge de morto" apesar de todas as pressões que os leitores do forum Communities do Skype exerceram sobre ele. Agora o Skype mudou de dono, então "o futuro a Deus pertence".

  • sameer |
    23/08/11
    sameer

    it is not downloading in our country in oman its noticw now wat i do

  • aashish acharya |
    26/08/11
    aashish acharya

    its very best software for those who r away from their family and its a very convinent tool to use. and also best for all ages group

  • Joe Stinson |
    29/08/11
    Joe Stinson

    I just began (8/28/11) Skype on my 4 yr. old Mac. Due to the age of my OS I'm using a lower version of Skype. So far, so good. One problem, my camera's image is 'slanty' (pix is slanty and not clear). The recipient cannot make out my pix. Any suggested solutions?

  • luluok |
    31/08/11
    luluok

    i need download skype.but is blocked

  • waqasghumman |
    10/09/11
    waqasghumman

    good

  • evelyn |
    21/09/11
    evelyn

    I can't download skype on my BB torch. Plz any help?

  • Ponnaka |
    22/09/11
    Ponnaka

    I have this weird not supported on this architecture when every i try to open skype after i finish doing all of those things. How can i have a support on this architecture on mac? pls help me i want my skype back again. -- please can anybody help me.

  • mido |
    06/10/11
    mido

    good

  • valentine |
    13/10/11
    valentine

    Cant download and install skype because it stops running and saying it can uninstall old skype 5.5

  • sheikh irshad |
    23/10/11
    sheikh irshad

    i cant download any virsion of skype. previously it was working perfectly. now it stops downloading saying it cant download due to some error. can anybody help me.

  • jojo |
    04/12/11
    jojo

    i cant download any virsion of skype. previously it was working perfectly. now it stops downloading saying it cant download due to some error. can anybody help me.

  • abidijaz |
    06/12/11
    abidijaz

    is very fine and great software

  • hellen |
    08/12/11
    hellen

    i can sign in online using my skype credentials but i cannot login direct to my computer, what seems to be the problem i use to sign in beforte but now it just stoped. i have tried everything that i was told to do but nothing helped, please assist i cannot go on like this i missing out.

  • baba |
    09/12/11
    baba

    i cant donload latest skype in uae

  • Janet B. Routley |
    22/01/12
    Janet B. Routley

    Computer says "Downloading Skype". I've waited patiently for some time, but I don't think anything is happening. HELP -- please.

  • sarfaraz hussain |
    26/01/12
    sarfaraz hussain

    superb skype i like this

  • سعيد صالح |
    29/02/12
    سعيد صالح

    اريد تحميل برنامج سكايب على حتى اتمكن من مشركة الاصدقاء واكون معكم

  • Arslan Ilyas |
    13/04/12
    Arslan Ilyas

    i want skype programe for nokia 3110c. please help me

  • prasta |
    23/04/12
    prasta

    i would like to download skype for my htc mobile polaris 100 (p3600).

  • gurpreet singh |
    05/08/12
    gurpreet singh

    i want to download skype on my samsung wave s8500-r please help me

  • lea coda |
    28/06/13
    lea coda

    How can i see my friend end my skype colling

  • Sule |
    02/08/13
    Sule

    I like it

  • RAMESH |
    12/08/13
    RAMESH

    I LIKE

  • |
    12/09/14

    from last 4 month skype dont work properly on window xp it give fatal error after searching i search older version whitch is supported on window xp

25/10/14
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