Connect “Face to Face” with Your Long Distance Friends and Family During the Holidays with Video Chat Technology
There’s nothing like the holiday season to reinforce the importance of relationships with our friends and family. While the kids are obsessed with toys and Santa, most adults believe that spending time with our loved ones is the most important aspect of the holidays. For family members who can’t make it home for the holidays, it can be less than a cheery occasion. Some of us are hampered by job schedules, pricey air travel, health issues or military service. Whatever the reason might be, remember it’s still possible to have a “face to face” conversation with your loved ones with video chat technology.
Do You Skype?
Skype is a software program that uses a technology known as “voice over the internet” for communications. Skype offers instant messaging with voice and text, file and screen sharing and video chat via computers, tablets and mobile phones. You can communicate with one person at a time or an entire group, plus it’s available at over two million public hotspots worldwide with Skype WiFi.
Over the holidays, try out a Skype video chat with a long distance loved one. Once you have mastered that first video chat, you might want to have your immediate family Skype contact another branch of the family for a virtual holiday get together. And don’t forget, Skype costs less than a phone call.
To start, both you and the person you will be contacting will need to set up individual Skype accounts. Setting up a Skype account is free. You will also need a webcam on your computer or phone and internet access. If you are having a “bad hair day” – there will be no hiding it from the webcam!
To learn more, click on Skype.
How About Some FaceTime?
FaceTime essentially delivers the same video chat service as Skype, but it is specifically designed for Apple products. Apple developed FaceTime for mobile devices running iOS and Mac computers running Mac OSX or newer. The video chat feature of FaceTime works on iOS devices with a forward facing camera and on Mac computers equipped with a FaceTime camera.
Like Skype, FaceTime is also easy to set up. FaceTime simply requires an Apple ID and an email address and you’re ready to go. Find your family member’s entry in your Contacts or Address Book and you are ready to connect via iPhone, iPad or Mac computer. Like Apple says, all it takes is a tap and a smile!
To learn more, click on FaceTime.
If you need assistance with video chat or any other computer technologies, please contact your local Computer Troubleshooters office and an IT professional will be pleased to help you. Everyone at Computer Troubleshooters wishes you and your family a happy holiday season!