Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Qik launches Android apps making video chat possible between iPhone & Android users – assuming they will talk

Can Android users and iOS communicate with each without getting into an argument? We'll find out now that Qik has released an Android version of its video chat software for Android devices.

Freaky, here I am video chatting with myself about Qik.

Qik, which is owned by Skype, has had an iPhone version of the software for a while now but it was of limited for the same reason FaceTime has been a bust: so few could use it. But with the release of Android version now iPhone owners and Android owners can video chat – assuming they really want to.

And therein lies the problem: who is actually video chatting? I've never seen anyone do it in public, though I suppose the WiFi requirement by FaceTime may be to blame. Qik (iPhone app here) helps because it on 3G, as well as WiFi.

One of the first posts here at TNM talked about UStream, but Qik seems like it is in theory would be a more powerful tool, one that combines video recording, streaming, and now video chat. But here is the reality of Qik: playing around with the app awhile and testing its streaming and recording capabilities I can tell you I could not get the app to stream live video, or to record and then upload the video properly when on WiFi. Then, after the system failed to record and upload any video online I then asked the app to delete the videos – it couldn't do that task either, so I had to go online and manually delete the "videos" (actually just empty files).

Later I was able to get halting video to steam using 3G, but the quality of the video was something from the nineties. The good news here is that the apps are free, so you get what you pay for, right?

Qik's biggest accomplishment to date is clearly getting Skype to buy them, because while I've gotten UStream to work flawlessly, Qik is pretty much unusable (at least for me, anyway).

Here is their video, in case you're interested: