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Author Topic:  Skype
Jerry Overstreet


From:
Louisville Ky
Post  Posted 21 Mar 2020 5:41 pm    
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I'm thinking about enabling Skype on win 10 to help keep in touch with other folks during the current crisis.

I'm basically a computer dummy, but I can go through the motions to set it up.

I just wanted to ask if users have any tips, cautions, concerns etc. using it. Any more computer related problems with it enabled? Any reason not to enable it? Need to add more security measures? Which apps not needed?
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Jim Cohen


From:
Philadelphia, PA
Post  Posted 21 Mar 2020 5:52 pm    
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I've used Skype in the past and am finding Zoom has better capabilities and is easier to use. (Of course, it's possible I didn't fully explore Skype's capabilities but, with Zoom, they seem to be readily findable). YMMV.
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Jim Fogle


From:
Winston-Salem, North Carolina, USA
Post  Posted 23 Mar 2020 6:09 pm    
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I never removed Skype so I don't have to reinstall it. But I've not used it in many years since back before Microsoft purchased the company and folded the software into their products.

The only caution I know of is both parties have to use the same software. For example you couldn't use Skype with another user using Zoom.

As far as I know there is no universal video conferencing program. Both sides of the conversation have to use the same program. However web platforms like Google and Facebook offer the feature as well as programs like Microsoft and Zoom.
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Doug Beaumier


From:
Northampton, MA
Post  Posted 23 Mar 2020 6:22 pm    
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I downloaded both Skype and Zoom this week and I find Skype to be more user friendly. People say it's much better than it used to be a few years ago. Zoom has more options but it seems harder to navigate, for me anyway. Then there's FaceTime, free on all Apple devices, easy to use but it only works between Apple devices.
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Jerry Overstreet


From:
Louisville Ky
Post  Posted 23 Mar 2020 7:41 pm    
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Thanks fellows. It was installed on the PC when I got it. It's free far as I know so that's the cost I like.
I went ahead and enabled it, but I haven't tried to contact anybody.

One reason I did was so I could communicate with the VA via video, but it doesn't appear that I'm not qualified since I'm not service disabled. I 'spect I'll find other uses for it maybe. I don't do phone calls etc. with the PC, so it may not get used at all, but it's there.

I know that John Mc et. al. use it for lessons etc.
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Jim Fogle


From:
Winston-Salem, North Carolina, USA
Post  Posted 24 Mar 2020 1:43 pm     VA Has It's Own App
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Doug Beaumier,

I didn't realize Facetime is an Apple exclusive program until you mentioned it. There sure are a lot of Windows applications with a similar name though, isn't there? It is easy to think you're installing a program that works with Apple's Facetime but doesn't. Who knows what little nasty surprises you'd also be installing!

Jerry Overstreet,

The US Veterans Administration released video chat apps for use with both Apple and Android smartphones or tablets. The apps are available through the Apple Store and the Google Play store.

If you have a laptop or desktop with a built-in microphone and camera, or if you attached an external webcam and microphone to your computer, VA chat is available by appointment using just your browser. You make an appointment for a video chat and the VA will provide you with a webpage link and appointment time.

I've not yet used video chat but I tested the feature on this laptop while using Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome and Microsoft Edge. It appears to work fine in the tests.

https://mobile.va.gov/app/va-video-connect This webpage link includes a description of the feature, links to the Apple App Store and Google Play, use guides, frequently asked questions (FAQs), ease-f-use survey and a link to test the feature using your browser.

If I can help, feel free to contact me using the forum private message (pm) feature or by e-mail.
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Harold Fogle (1945-1999) Brother - Pedal Steel Player
Dell laptop Win 10, i3, 8GB, 480GB
2020 BiaB UltraPlus PAK
Cakewalk by Bandlab DAW
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Jerry Overstreet


From:
Louisville Ky
Post  Posted 24 Mar 2020 2:17 pm    
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Thanks for the reply Jim. Well, I don't have a smart phone or tablet. I do have a recent PC that has a mic and camera.

It appears though, that the VA only offers this service in certain areas and it doesn't look like I'm in one of those. Oh Well

I appreciate your offer and I may take you up on that when I find out a little bit more about these systems.
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Jim Fogle


From:
Winston-Salem, North Carolina, USA
Post  Posted 24 Mar 2020 5:14 pm    
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Jerry,

You may want to call the VA's National Telehealth Technology Help Desk at 866-651-3180 or 703-234-4483, Monday through Saturday, 7 a.m. - 11 p.m. ET and ask them if any national video chat options are available.

Another idea is exchange the face-to-face appointment to a telephone appointment. Depending on why the appointment was initially made some VA clinic departments will call you if requested. They use your telephone number on record. This is especially true if the scheduled appointment is a follow up or wellness check. I used secure messaging to contact Cardiology and my Primary Care Provide (PCP) and was able to have both appointments over the telephone. It's a safer option for both them and me plus saves travel time, fuel and wear and tear on your vehicle.
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Harold Fogle (1945-1999) Brother - Pedal Steel Player
Dell laptop Win 10, i3, 8GB, 480GB
2020 BiaB UltraPlus PAK
Cakewalk by Bandlab DAW
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