Skype’s ‘Meet Now’ calling feature lets users join video meetings without a Skype account

Hemani Sheth Mumbai | Updated on April 04, 2020

As the use of video-conferencing app surges amid lockdowns across the globe in a bi to fight the coronavirus pandemic, companies are looking to one-up the competition with new features.

Microsoft-owned video-conferencing tool Skype on Fridaypromoted its “Meet now” calling feature that enables users to set up Skype meetings with friends and family even if they do not have a Skype account.

“Introducing a simple, hassle-free way to connect with the important people in your life on #Skype, no sign-ups or downloads required,” Skype tweeted from its official account.

With alternate tools such as zoom garnering over 200 million users, Skype is trying to make its video calling software more user-friendly and accessible.

“Meet Now in Skype allows you to easily set up a collaboration space and invite both Skype contacts and friends or family who are not on Skype. Participants can then easily join meetings whether they have an account or not,” Skype explained in an official blog post.

How it works

Users can start a video-conference from their Skype account and clock on the Meet Now button to generate a meeting link. Users can then share the meeting link using the Share invite button to invite others. Other users can click on the link and join the meeting through the Skype app. Users who do not have the Skype app or a Skype account can still join the meeting through Skype’s web platform. Invited participants can join the meeting by selecting the Start call button.

Users can also enable screen sharing and screen recording for meetings generated through this feature.

The call recordings of meetings generated through the Meet Now platform will be stored on the platform for 30 days and the media shared in the chat “even longer,” according to Skype.

Skype users can also customize individual as well as group Meet Now chats. Meet Now chats will initially have the same title and profile picture. They can tap or click on the Chat Header in their meeting and select the Edit button to rename it and add a profile picture. Group Chats are customized by default as the platform requires a group name as a user selects participants first before creating the group.

Skype had witnessed a 70 per cent surge in usage in March as compared to the previous month, Microsft had said on Monday.

Published on April 04, 2020

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