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Skype releases new 3.5 beta that adds video into chats and mood messages

As announced yesterday on the Share Skype blog and in more detail on the Skype Garage blog (and also in the Windows Release Notes), Skype has released an updated 3.5 beta for Windows.  Skype 3.5 beta came out earlier this month, but this new update includes several new features, most notably the ability to add video into a chat or mood message, and per the release notes it also fixes a range of bugs.  Jim Courtney has more info over at Skype Journal, but I found this piece of interest with regard to the new video snapshot capability (which now allows you to take a snapshot of the remote video, i.e. the person you are speaking with):

Providing your video also implies that your provide your remote participant with permission to make snapshots. Video snapshots inherits existing privacy mechanisms associated with turning on your video.

So basically if you use Skype video, you should be aware that the person with whom you are chatting could easily capture images of you. (Obviously this has always been possible with screen capture programs, but this is now built into Skype.)

On the "adding videos to chat or mood message" feature, my initial reaction was that this could be quite cool... but that enthusiasm was a bit tempered when I realized that you can only add video from specific Skype partners (and currently only one, Metacafe).  Alas, you can not just point to a YouTube video... you are restricted to those at Metacafe.  Of course, you can upload your own video there, but you have to go through the whole account creation process, etc.  It strikes me as a bit odd that given the eBay/Google agreement to work together there isn't yet a relationship with YouTube.  We'll see... in the meantime I can imagine Metacafe will see a spike in new accounts from people who want to experiment with Skype 3.5.

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