Skype has launched a video messaging app called Skype Qik, letting users swap short clips up to 42 seconds long via their mobiles.
Skype has been a dominant force in video chat for some time, but has been relatively slow in adapting to mobile, where apps like Apple’s Facetime, Google Hangouts, Facebook Messenger and a host of chat apps lead the way.
All messages vanish after two weeks to help protect your privacy, and users can pre-record “Qik Fliks” to use when either too busy or if they want to reply with a favourite message.
Skype Qik works for two individuals communicating and also for larger groups. Its main interface is a list of recent chat contacts. Tapping one of them reveals the conversational history and a big button to add a new video message.
People sign up for the service with their phone numbers, not usernames and passwords, an approach used by messaging apps such asFacebook’s WhatsApp and Rakuten’s Viber.
“Skype Qik is a lightweight, spontaneous, mobile-first video messaging app,” said Piero Sierra, director at mobile for Skype, in an interview. It’s a companion app to Skype’s video and audio conferencing software, which with more than 300 million users is a strong force already in online communications.
Skype Qik is available today on iTunes, Google Play and the Windows Phone Store.