More than 700 billion Skype users place more than 900 zillion calls annually using Skype's free software. While our numbers may be off, there's no doubt that millions of people use Skype for voice and video calls, instant messaging, and file-sharing. PortableApps creates portable freeware by modifying open-source programs to store program data locally and run on a Windows machine without modifying the registry or file structure. We looked at their Skype Portable release. You can store Skype Portable on a USB stick or other device and run it on any Windows PC with Internet access and a microphone, video camera, or other means of communicating via the Skype network.
For a clean installation of Skype Portable, we chose a PC that lacked Skype. We opted to create an entirely new account instead of importing an existing account to verify that the portable application covered every step. The process of creating a free Skype account is the same with Skype Portable as with the regular Skype app. Current Skype users can easily associate existing accounts with Skype Portable during the installation and setup process. Skype is designed to be as bumble-proof as possible, and all its rough edges were worn away long ago. In no time, we heard the familiar echo tone signaling that Skype's setup wizard had finished its job. Seconds later, we were placing phone calls, and with very good audio quality, too. Having verified that the Skype part of Skype Portable worked properly, we tried the portable part, copying the program's folder to a USB drive. We transferred the drive to another computer that lacked Skype, plugged it in, and ran Skype Portable on it: success.
It's easy enough to access your Skype account from any PC that already has Skype. With Skype Portable, though, you can access not only your own account but your own program, settings, and data.
Skype Portable lets you connect to others via instant message, audio conferencing, and video phone. It can also call regular phone lines from anywhere in the world. It's packaged as a portable app so you communicate on the go.
What's new in this version:
- Blocked contacts appearing in Skype Home,
- No input fields (blue window) in login Window,
- Crash when chat name contains "" characters.