April 20th, 2005

New Scientist reports (subscription) on the phenomenon of “Skypecasting”.

From the NS article:

…Skype was designed to allow users to make free telephone calls over the internet. But the sound quality is excellent and the software also allows callers to exchange files and play music while they are talking. Radio buffs are now exploiting the new technology to become both interviewer and DJ on a shoestring budget. In doing so, they may be starting a broadcasting revolution, one that democratises the industry and makes the amateur broadcaster king.

Skypecasting, as it is called, is possible because of another trend dubbed podcasting. Podcasts are MP3 files that are automatically delivered to subscribers’ MP3 players when posted online…Now with Skype, podcasters can do more than just post an album by their favourite band or record a monologue on current events. They can interview a band on the other side of the world before playing its latest set, or bring together overseas experts to discuss a topic. With a little know-how, Skype allows these conversations and music clips to be saved as MP3 files, posted online and then automatically downloaded by listeners.

What’s more, it’s cheap. With Skype, people can be added to a conference call at no extra cost.

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