Skype, the world’s most popular program for making videocalls, has recently launched Qik, a social app that lets you have conversations with your contacts exclusively via short video clips. This marks a move towards an ‘offline’ mode for making videocalls, with the option included to receive video messages to view later even when you don’t have a connection.

The app, which doesn’t require a Skype account but rather just a mobile phone number to register, bases its conversations on short recordings of no more than 42 seconds, with no space for including text or images. Its clean and clear interface makes it easy to have conversations thanks to how straightforward its operations are: you select a contact and start recording. Then it’s sent automatically.

Once you send a ‘Qik Flik’ to one of your contacts, he or she can respond exclusively by sending another video, which can be pre-recorded and stored in a list of 12 direct Qik Fliks to which the tool provides shortcuts. Sending them is as simple as doing the recording by clicking on the pink button, and once the capture is done selecting the contact you want to send it to.

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There is also an option to create friend groups to share your videos with, and the tabs for both individual and group conversations will disappear after two weeks, when users usually no longer need them or have forgotten about them.

Your contacts book of people you can send messages to will be as big as your phone’s normal one. If a user doesn’t have the app installed he’ll receive a message explaining that they need to download the app to be able to play the video.

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