Skype, the global Internet communications
company, released the latest version of its software, Skype 3.0 Beta
for Windows. Skype users across the world can now enjoy even simpler and
easier ways to talk to one another with new features that enable community-led
chat and discussion.

Skype 3.0 beta also includes a series of enhancements to the ‘look and
feel’ of Skype. These enhancements aim to make Skype even simpler to use and
give users instant access to the features they need, when they need them.

“With every release of our software, we want to give people the freedom
to explore the boundaries of conversation and make internet calling and ‘live’
online discussions the most natural thing in the world,” says Henry Gomez,
Chief Marketing Officer & Director of Worldwide Operations, Skype.

“We’re introducing a number of new features with Skype 3.0 beta including
Click-to-Call which lets users make calls to ordinary phone numbers when they
are online. Click-to-call is so easy to use. For example, imagine you’re
searching online for a good place to eat and you find a restaurant and want to
make a reservation. All you need to do is click on the number and you can make
a direct call using SkypeOut ” concluded Gomez

The new features and benefits of Skype 3.0 include:

— Skypecasts(TM) and Public Chats which allow users to join in
multi-person community conversations and discussions.

— Click-to-call which lets users make calls to ordinary phone numbers
with just one click when surfing different websites, using SkypeOut(TM).

— A more powerful and personal user interface making it even easier to
enjoy using Skype.

Skypecasts are now in beta and allow users to browse and join Skypecasts
via a new ‘live’ window featured in Skype. Skypecasts are live, moderated
discussions allowing groups of up to 100 people from anywhere in the world to
talk to one another.

World-renown mystery author Michael Connelly participated in a Skypecast
this September to promote his newest book, Echo Park. The U.K. is one of
Connelly’s biggest markets, but no book tour stop was planned. Skypecasts
allowed Connelly to hold a virtual book tour where he read an excerpt of his
new book and answered questions from his fans about the book, as well as
questions about the future of his popular character Detective Hieronymus
Bosch, potential movies made from his books and his writing style.

The Skypecast lasted an hour with 35 people joining in from all over the
world from England to the States to Malaysia to Italy. The participants, as
well as Connelly and his publisher, were very pleased with the end result.

Skype is also introducing an exciting new community feature – public
chats. Public chats are open, ongoing text conversations based on instant
messaging where users can meet new people and chat about anything they fancy.
A Skype user can start or join a public chat directly from Skype. Public chat
hosts can moderate the flow and content of conversation.

Hosts can also reject or ban users from public chats and set rules on who
can participate and observe the conversation in progress. Public chats can be
promoted using simple online links and web banners in email signatures, blogs,
forums, websites or even Skype mood messages.

The new version makes it easier for consumers to call ordinary phone
numbers with just one click when surfing the internet. Click-to-Call is an
automatic online phone number recognition feature that works with both
Internet Explorer and Firefox. Click-to-Call allows Skype users to call
directly from any website using SkypeOut

Skype’s new and enhanced user interface delivers a more simplified and
personalized experience. The updated look and feel makes Skype simple to use
and gives users instant access to the features they need, when they need them.
Personalization has been improved through clickable mood messages and new
wallpapers allowing users to customise Skype to suit their personality.