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Help Windows Desktop

How do I make free voice and video calls on Skype for Windows Desktop?

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Watch the video to see how to make a free voice and video call in less than 45 seconds. A step-by-step guide is also available below.




You can make a voice or video call anyone else on Skype, anywhere in the world, for free. Simply find your friends and family who are using Skype and add them to your contact list. When you’ve added them, it’s easy to make a call.


Before you make a call


Check that your system meets the minimum system requirements. The person you’re calling will also need to meet these requirements.


Check that your webcam is working properly. If it’s not working, these tips might help.  


To call someone in your contact list


In Skype, click the Contacts tab.

Contacts selected in the Skype main window.


Find the person you’d like to call. If you have lots of contacts, you can type a name into the search box to find the person you're looking for.  

The contact and their profile picture selected.


Click the contact. You’ll see their details in the main window.

If the contact has one of these status icons  The Online, Away, Do not disturbed status icons. displayed next to their name, it means they're on Skype and you can call them for free.

The icon (right pointing arrow) indicating that a contact has set up call forwarding.If you see this icon next to your contact’s name, it means they're on a mobile or landline so you’ll need a little Skype Credit or a subscription to call them.

If you see the contact request icon The contact request icon. next to your contact’s name, it means that they haven’t accepted your contact request yet.


Click the blue Call (telephone) icon to make a voice call, or the blue Video call (camera) icon to make a video call.

The Call icon selected in the contact window.

The screen changes color, a call bar appears near the bottom of the screen and you’ll hear ringing until the other person answers.


If you don't hear the other person, or they can't hear you, or one of you doesn't see video, click the call quality icon in the call bar (you may have to move your mouse to make the call bar appear). Check the tabs to identify any potential problems.

The call quality icon selected in the call bar

If you're having issues, check our Call Quality Troubleshooter.


To end the call, click the red End call button.

The End call button selected in the call bar

Useful things you can do on a call

Call options icons

  1. Hide or reveal your Contacts or Recent lists.

  2. If you have a webcam, turn on video so that the other person can see you. Learn more about making a video call.

  3. Mute your microphone so the other person can't hear you.

  4. Send files, send contacts, share your screen or add people to the conversation.

  5. Hang up the call.

  6. Adjust your call settings, including your microphone and speaker volume.

  7. Show the IM window so you can instant message the person you’re talking to.

Here are a few pages that can help you do even more:



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