Why I don't ... SkypeFind?

Yesterday i came across a post of Jaanus Kase on SkypeFind. I will copy a small part of his comments here:

... I suspect that ... Skype people think of Find only as a vehicle for generating more SkypeOut calls. (This seems also to be the reason behind why you can’t put a Skype Name for a business, only a SkypeOut number.) I don’t think this is very smart.

I also posted some comments on SkypeFind some months ago here.

Jaanus is not an ordinary Skype blogger like myself: he was Skype Staff until May 30! And he confirms some of my suspicions!

Skype should focus on added value for the customer, of course WITH a revenue objective, not the other way around: money, money, money, with a lot of wasted developers energy in small worthless features!


Video in the mood? Bah!

In the 3.5 beta version you can add a video clip in your mood. I tested it. Not YouTube yet, but Metacafe and Dailymotion. OK, it is funny, and it seems to work!

But what is it good for? Will this attract new customers? I doubt about it! Will this generate more income for Skype? Probably: they have probably a commercial deal with the above mentioned sites. Beware that on Metacafe i had sometimes disgusting surprises: windows popping up telling me that my computer should be scanned for some "diseases"!

On the Skype Blog, there are (today) about 10 comments on the announcement of the new 3.5 version. Two of these are “out of topic”. I picked up parts of the phrases in each one of the remaining 8 comments:

  • I'd like a lite version of Skype
  • Agreed. Why is the Skype install now larger than MSN Messenger?
  • No, keep going SKYPE! More … but yes, I also agree with the others: Make a LITE version!
  • Simplicity was one of the reasons why Skype became so popular!
  • a light version would be wonderful
  • I welcome more features
  • with the exception of the file size I am having no problem
  • It sounds like advertisement!!!
EDITED: And then i found the following comment from reader Walter Adamson of Skype Journal:
they have forgotten the basics while they rush off developing new "mood" features and the like, such as the features which dominate release 3.5

Time to listen to the customers Skype! Most existing customers don’t like it!

EDITED ON JULY 30: see the reaction of Villu Arak of the official Skype blog here


Downloads UP, why?

Downloads are still rising spectacularly. Sometimes at speeds of about 2500/minute!

If it were all new users interested in the promotion concerning Pakistan and India (see my previous post below), then i would have expected also an increase in the number of SkypeOut purchases.

The graph below shows this isn’t the case …

The temporary increase in the number of purchases at the end of June could be due to Europeans leaving for Holidays and putting some more amounts on their account (this is pure speculation on my behalf!). But, no sensible increase in purchase orders due to the mentioned campaign can be seen on the graph in July.

Then on one of the download pages i saw this:And on the lower part of the page:
So, could it be that a lot of Americans and Canadians download the Skype application and register new usernames just to be able to make some free calls?
Or could it be that a lot of people in other countries are tempted by the free offer, and don't read the small grayed out letters on the bottom of the webpage?

Again, pure speculation, but i am still wondering what the real reason is of the increased number of downloads! In the past it always had something to do with promotions or really innovating new features. And i don't see anything like that now ... unless it really are the free minutes!


Downloads UP UP UP ???

Strange, while i’ve been on Holidays, i didn’t check the concurrent users online neither the downloads. Some minutes ago i made an update of my numbers and …

Downloads have gone up dramatically as shown on the graph below.

Indeed, the number of downloads were 500 per minute in June. Now, since about July 14 (French National Day?) it is around 1750 downloads per minute!

The only sensible explanation i see is the “Pakistan and India campaign” Skype launched in July, cutting SkypeOut prices in half! See here “From Lahore to Bangalore”.

Will this be the next Skype boost?


Skype is fubar!

Yesterday i downloaded the latest Skype Beta version, like always available on a Wednesday by the way! Well, my advice is: DON'T DOWNLOAD IT!

Vincent, a Skype Staff asked me "What kind of "advertising" bothers you in Skype?". OK, Vincent, here you have some more ... go to TOOLS -> OPTIONS -> NOTIFICATIONS -> ALERTS AND MESSAGES!

Although i unticked a long time ago Help, Skype Tips and Promotions, here they are again, with ALERTS! What the heck? Alerts???????

I will leave it "on", just to experience what they will dare to send me, but in the meantime, my answer to Skype Marketing Staff concerning these unwanted advertising messages is:(Nothing personal against you Vincent! ;-)

And i take two weeks holidays, without internet, therefore no Skype, and no blog!


SPAM invasion on my blog

My blog got three comments in the last 24 hours: one "real" comment and two SPAM!

Strange, the first one was full of publicity for PayPal, and full of links to the official PayPall site. The English language was good! I deleted it! CRAP!

The other one has something to do with Skype Prime, isn't linked to Skype, and tries to sell some services. The English language is bad (mine is better, i hope). I took one sentence out of the website:

"our site is just started and may be contains a bugs, which we will fast fix if you will post them via this form".

If i could i would post a lot of bugs to their site! I didn't delete it, because it is too funny! But it is anyhow annoying.

[EDITED] I will apologize here publicly about my comment above concerning PrimeSkype. This was indeed a misunderstanding, due to the receiving of some other BlogSpam. This site, and the message were not spam, and i don't have any problem with somebody not speaking very well English ... i only wanted indeed to ridicule a spammer, and it wasn't :-(


Skype and Business Networks

The last days i had quite some private discussions (through Skype chat) and public comments (see Skype-News or SkypeJournal or my own blog) on the slowing down of the Skype Growth.

One very known Skype user (at least in the small Skype fanatics world) even told me privately, with sorrow in his voice: “MSN style advertising is invading Skype”.

Do they want to beat MSN? Wrong strategy! My kids (21, 19 and 17 years old) continue to use mainly MSN, although they know their father is a fanatic Skype user! It suits their needs, indeed with a lot of fancy stuff. But do they spend money on it? I am almost sure they don’t!

What Skype should have continued to do is focus on business! Because very few business men and professionals use MSN! And they are willing to spend money on professional tools!

OK, integration in the EBay platform is one way to try to catch the attention of some kind of business. But how many professionals use EBay?

Why didn’t they make some agreements or deals with some Business Virtual Networks like Ecademy or Linkedin? Or any other network of Professional adults?

Is it too late? I don’t think so.

Today i read in my (Flemish) Financial Newspaper that linkedin will open its platform to external developers and that from 2008 on users would be able to communicate with each other through internet telephony. I hope the partner is Skype, but i doubt about it!

There still is Ecademy and there are other similar networks!


I got interviewed …

Skype-News is another of several well known Skype Blogs. It is linked to the “alternative” News Site Mathaba.

I was interviewed by them, through … Skype chat of course! You can find the interview on the Mathaba website here.

Or on the Skype-News website here.

The interviewer is also a first hour user of Skype, as you will understand when reading his questions and own comments.