James over at our sister site jkOnTheRun has been trying the latest version of Skype (version 4.1 on Windows, 2.8 on Mac). This new version includes screen-sharing features that allow you to share your desktop with other Skype users. James tested it out while collaborating on a document editing session with co-writer Kevin and was extremely impressed with its simplicity and the way that it allowed real-time collaboration with very little lag. He says that using it enables “true collaboration; it is just like looking over the host’s shoulder to see what they are doing.”
Earlier today, I had a Skype call with James. Initiating a screen-sharing session during the call was as simple as pressing the “share” button and selecting whether to share the whole screen, or just a portion of it. It worked very well; James was able to see every detail on my screen with minimal lag, even though I am in the UK and he’s in Houston. Here’s a screenshot of my desktop he took during the call:
This new version of Skype provides a very easy (and free) way to share a screen with a colleague for collaboration or tech support. Check out James’ post for more detail.
Note: You might need to go to the Skype web site to grab the latest version; clicking “Check for Updates…” didn’t work for me.
Have you tried Skype screen sharing for collaboration? Let us know how it went in the comments.