Should I use Skype or FaceTime – The Never Ending Battle?

Skype Or Facetime

It seems like something from a science fiction movie made 50 years ago or from a cartoon about a family that lives in the future. The idea of being able to see and talk to someone on a phone call is not a new idea. It is something that people dreamed about for many years. It is also now a reality. The use of programs such as Skype and FaceTime allows people to talk and see a person anywhere in the world and hold conversations with them in real time.

Is it Skype or is it FaceTime?

facetime on mac

People can use smartphones, tablets, laptops and computers to work these applications. The only thing people have to figure out is what application to use. Is it Skype or is it FaceTime? Comparing the two options face to face is the best way to figure out the answer to the question.

1. Availability

The key to making any type of video calling work is making sure that all of the parties can access the application that is being used. This is where FaceTime loses part of the battle to Skype. In order to use FaceTime, you have to have an Apple device. That is true for all of the people that want to connect. Skype can be used with almost any operating system and the people that are connecting do not have to use the same system.

Another thing that limits the availability of FaceTime is that it is not supported by all of the cellular carriers. A person may have to use FaceTime only when they have a Wi-Fi connection available. Skype is much easier to use through any connection that can be found whether it is Wi-Fi or cellular.

2. Ease of Use

Both FaceTime and Skype are designed to be user friendly. FaceTime does limit the different options that a user has more than Skype although both are fairly limiting. In FaceTime the only choice that you have is the phone number or email that is associated with the account.

Once a person makes that choice they can easily call people that are in their contact list. Skype does the same thing. Calls are initiated by choosing someone for the contact list. If the person is not on the contact list, they will have to be added before a call can take place.

3. Performance

In the end, the performance is the most important part for any video calling application. Both Skype and FaceTime are quality driven that most people will appreciate. FaceTime is generally considered to have a higher quality video and audio performance than the Skype users are able to get.

4. Compatibility And Differences for Mac users

Both FaceTime and Skype are available for iOS and Mac OS X, but due to the fact that they are separate applications which require separate accounts, you cannot use them together. If you’re on a Mac, you can use both applications at the same time but you still cannot simultaneously use your webcam and microphone with both. You can instant message in Skype while you video chat in FaceTime, but as long as you’re using FaceTime you can’t use your microphone or webcam in Skype.

FaceTime is technically a VoIP application like Skype, but does not offer the same features. As said above you cannot use FaceTime with someone who does not meet compatibility requirements. FaceTime does not include instant messaging, audio conferencing, file sharing or screen sharing – all of which are available in Skype.

On a Mac the FaceTime app is bundled with recent versions of the Mac OS. Unlike with the iOS version, all FaceTime configuration is handled directly within the FaceTime app. When you launch it you should see the image captured by your Mac’s built-in camera (or an attached webcam if your Mac lacks a camera.)

Therefore both Skype and FaceTime have their advantages and disadvantages. Deciding which one to choose really depends on the your decision and how you plan to use it. If you care the most about performance, you may decide on FaceTime. If you want the app that allows you to reach the largest number of people anytime and anywhere they want, Skype may be the better answer. It is all a matter of evaluating your needs, the devices you have and what you really want from your video calling application.

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