If you want to practice making a call and check that your speakers and microphone are working properly in Skype, you can make a test call to our friendly assistant Echo. She will prompt you to record a message, and then play it back for you – so you’ll know right away if your sound is working.
1. Plug in your speakers and microphone
If you’re using your device’s built-in speakers and microphone, you don’t need to plug anything in – but if you’re using a separate mic, speakers or a headset, make sure they’re plugged in and switched on.
2. Find the Skype sound test service
Sign into Skype and look in your contact list for Echo/Sound Test Service. If you don’t see her in your contact list, type echo123 into the search field and click Search Skype. She will show up as Echo/Sound Test Service.
In the calling pane, click Call
4. Follow the instructions you hear
Your new friend Echo will ask you to record a message, and then will play your message back to you.
Did it work?
If you heard Echo’s voice and heard your recorded message, then your sound and microphone are working just fine and you’re good to go.
If you didn’t hear Echo’s voice, you probably have a problem with your speakers or headphones. Check out our guide to solving your speakers/headphones issues.
If you heard Echo’s voice but didn’t hear your own recorded message played back, you probably have a problem with your microphone. Check out our guide to solving your microphone issues.
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
1. Check that your system meets the minimum system requirements. The person you’re calling will also need to meet these requirements.
2. Check that your webcam is working properly. If it’s not working, these tips might help.
To call someone in your contact list
1. In Skype, click the Contacts tab.
2. 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.
3. Click the contact. You’ll see their details in the main window.
If the contact has one of these status icons displayed next to their name, it means they're on Skype and you can call them for free.
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 next to your contact’s name, it means that they haven’t accepted your contact request yet.
4. Click the blue Call (telephone) icon to make a voice call, or the blue Video call (camera) icon to make a video call.
The screen changes color, a call bar appears near the bottom of the screen and you’ll hear ringing until the other person answers.
5. 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.
If you're having issues, check our Call Quality Troubleshooter.
6. To end the call, click the red End call button.
Useful things you can do on a call
A. Hide or reveal your Contacts or Recent lists.
B. If you have a webcam, turn on video so that the other person can see you. Learn more about making a video call.
C. Mute your microphone so the other person can't hear you.
D. Send files, send contacts, share your screen or add people to the conversation.
E. Hang up the call.
F. Adjust your call settings, including your microphone and speaker volume.
G. Show the IM window so you can instant message the person you’re talking to.
With Skype, it’s easy to call people in other countries. You can make a call:
• From Skype to someone else on Skype
• From Skype to someone on their mobile or landline
Calling from Skype to someone else on Skype
Skype-to-Skype calls are free. It doesn’t matter where you are in the world, or where the person you’re calling is. It doesn’t even matter if you’re using Skype on a computer, a mobile* or your TV. As long as you’re both using Skype, the call is completely free.
You can make Skype-to-Skype calls using video or just voice – it’s up to you. Make a voice call with up to 25 people at once and that’s free too (as long as everyone’s on Skype). If you want to have a video call with more than two people, that's free too.
* WiFi connection or mobile data plan required.
Calling someone’s mobile or landline
You can call someone on their mobile or landline from Skype. It doesn’t matter where you are in the world: if you’re signed in to Skype, you can call anyone, anywhere at low per minute rates. The price you pay depends on the country you’re calling to, not the country you’re calling from.Pay as you go using Skype Credit – check out our rates. Or buy a monthly subscription to a particular country or region.
Watch the video to see how to have great Skype call in just over a minute. A step-by-step guide is also available below.
If you're making a call or video call on Skype for Windows Desktop, there are a few things you can do ahead of time to make sure you have the best possible call.
Remember, a Skype call is composed of two parts: you, and the person (or people) you're calling. Even if you have everything set up perfectly on your end, they may not be ideal at the other end. It’s worth asking your contacts to check the requirements below, too.
If you encounter problems with any of your calls, check out our Call Quality Troubleshooters
Check your internet connection
A good internet connection is vital to having a great call.
• If you're using Wi-Fi, move to an area with the strongest signal.
• Consider using a wired connection by plugging your computer directly into the router.
• Close any applications that might be using your connection (file downloads, download managers, streaming audio or video) to ensure Skype can use as much bandwidth as needed.
Check your computer
Your computer's hardware and software can affect the quality of your call.
• Make sure you're using the latest version of Skype.
• Ensure that your computer is up-to-date, and you've downloaded any operating system updates you need.
• Make sure your computer meets the minimum requirements to run Skype.
• Make sure your speakers (or headphones) are plugged into your computer, and ensure that Skype can use them.
• Make sure that your microphone is plugged into your computer, and ensure that Skype can use it.
When someone calls you, a call alert window appears on your screen.
There are three options on the call alert window.
Click... To... Answer answer the call (voice only, no video) Answer with video answer the call with video Decline reject the call
You can also set up call forwarding to automatically forward calls to a mobile or landline, or even another Skype Name. You’ll need a little Skype Credit or a subscription to forward calls to mobiles and landlines.