Skype (previous profile) released a new beta version – 126.96.36.199 – of their client today.
There are a bunch of new features (all are listed below), but there is one that really interesting feature that in my opinion changes the whole VOIP game. Skype now has a true call forwarding feature, allowing you to forward Skype calls to any normal phone, even when you are offline Skype.
I hadn’t picked up on this until I read a great Skype blog called Jan in Malaysia a few minutes ago. Call forwarding in an of itself is not new for Skype – Jyve has had a call forwarding feature in their Skype add-on for some time.
However, with Jyve, you had to be logged in to Skype for calls to forward. It was a necessary limitation (out of Jyve’s control), but when I’m logged into Skype I don’t need calls forwarded. It’s when I’m logged out and away from my computer that I want this.
So when I saw this I got pretty excited. But it is not clear from the Skype download page or their FAQs whether or not you had to be logged in for call forwarding to work.
So I tested it. Jan and I each called eachother when we were logged off, and Skype dutifully forwarded the calls to our cell phones. Perfect!
Under advanced settings, you can actually set three separate forwarding numbers, and each will ring in the order you set. When you are offline, a special icon appears letting people know they can call you and it will forward to a normal phone.
Here are all of the new features:
What are the new Skype features [in Skype for Windows 1.4 Beta]?
1.Call Forwarding â€“ You can set your Skype client to forward to 1 or multiple PSTN numbers simultaneously, or to another Skype name.
2.Peronalise Skype â€“ You can choose from a wide selection of sounds, ringtones and pictures to customize your Skype experience!
3.Improved Search and Add a Contact functions — cleaner, more intuitive features and layout… and smarter results!
4.Friendlier Getting Started & Import Contact Wizards & visual setup guides & dynamic tooltips — make getting started even easier!
5.One-click calls from any website with Outlook and IE toolbars
6.Improved Voice Quality
7.New Skype sounds!