Introduction to Information Literacy in the K12 Classroom/Chapter 6.4
Introduction Skype is a web based software application that enables people to make voice calls over the Internet. Skype can be downloaded for free from the website http://skype.com/, and all calls made to other Skype users are free as well. In addition to making phone calls though the internet users can transfer files, instant message, and video conference. Skype was written by the developers of Kazaa, a group of Estonia-based developers named Ahti Heinla, Priit Kasesalu and Jaan Tallinn. Skype headquarters is located in Luxembourg, and has offices all over the world, including: London, Tallinn, Tartu, Stockholm, Prague, and San Jose, California.
EBay bought Skype in September 2005 for $2.6 billion. In 2009 Skype recorded revenues of $170 million. A group of investors led by Silver Lake, that includes Index Ventures, Andreessen Horowitz and the Canada Pension Plan (CPP) Investment Board, purchased Skype in late 2009 for $1.9 billion. They now own 65% of Skype.
At the end of June in 2009 Skype had 480.5 million registered users, up 42 percent from 2008. It is estimated that only 82 million are active users. In 2009 the number of free Skype-to-Skype minutes rose 72 and the number of paid SkypeOut minutes rose 57 percent.
When To Use It
Skype can be used to connect people all over the world for any number of reasons. The video conferencing functionality is utilized by many companies, as it saves a tremendous amount of money that would otherwise be spent on traveling. Soldiers overseas use Skype to stay in contact with their families, and more and more teachers are using Skype as a tool in the classroom.
Skype and Education
Implementing new technologies in schools can be very expensive. Not only is their the price of equipment and software involved, but the maintenance and support add up to large sums also. Skype is a free, web based software, making it ideal for school budgets. Many teacher run blogs on the interent outline different way to utilize Skype in the classroom. Below is a link that highlights 50 awesome ways for teachers to use Skype. http://www.teachingdegree.org/2009/06/30/50-awesome-ways-to-use-skype-in-the-classroom/
50 Awesome Ways to Use Skype in the Classroom | Teaching Degree.org. (n.d.). Retrieved October 11, 2009, from http://www.teachingdegree.org/2009/06/30/50-awesome-ways-to-use-skype-in-the-classroom/
Poulus, T. (2009, September 3). Ebay gets good price for Skype, plus chance at more later - Telecompaper. Retrieved October 11, 2009, from http://www.telecompaper.com/news/article.aspx?cid=689371
Skype - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. (n.d.). Retrieved October 11, 2009, from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Skype
Skype â€“ Make free calls and great value calls on the internet. (n.d.). Retrieved October 11, 2009, from http://www.skype.com/
eBay to sell Skype... Deal puts Skype value at $2.75 Billion | eBay Ink. (n.d.). Retrieved October 11, 2009, from http://ebayinkblog.com/2009/09/01/ebay-to-sell-skype-deal-puts-skype-value-at-2-75-billion/