We were going to include this news in the podcast but due to the huge show that we had it was omitted or forgotten. At the end of last month Skype introduced Heartbeat. Up to the minute information on the current state of health of the Skype network. Great idea in my opinion.
Many people are now relying on Skype for daily communications. In my own humble on-line existence I use it everyday. I use it to keep in touch with family and friends. Without Skype there would be no Global Geek Podcast, as we use Skype to do it. This new addition to Skype means that we can now see what the network is doing, any problems and where they are. It covers both the premium services that Skype offers like Voicemail, and SkypeOut as well as things like Signing in, web servers and central contact list to name a few.
While this service does nothing as far as fixing the problems that you may see it does communicate to the users of Skype if things are working properly or not. This goes a lot further than most phone companies! Part of maintaining a competitive business is being transparent to your user base and communicating with your customers. Skype does this well with a nice interface and up-to-date information.
For an individual using Skype there are many variables that influence how well it works. Skype usually works well and does not have major problems. But if you are having problems with Skype this is a great place to just check and make sure that the network is running smoothly, it rules out one variable and might solve you problem in that it might not be you. Good move Skype.
Another nice feature of the page is that you can subscribe to an RSS feed for the latest information, outages or problems and get notified when they fixed.
In time it is going to be difficult for the Telcos to keep up not only with dirt cheap pricing but also service, we are on the verge of revolution as more and more people start to wise-up to this great technology. It only gets better!