Among the sundry telephony options available to us for having conference calls with our clients back in North America, the best option has turned out to be SkypeOut. We wear headsets for the output, and use one of our Mac’s internal microphones for the input. Our 150-year-old limestone villa is kind of echoey, so we’ve started taking our meetings from the pool deck.
Mind you, it does get a little weird if the local basilica’s bells strike the hour. It just adds some charm to the conversation, I think.
We recently encountered a farcical situation when calling a client. They have a phone system that requires you to enter a three digit extension. For reasons I don’t entirely understand, you can’t do this using Skype.
I hastily surfed around the web, and discovered the DTMF Tone Generator applet. It’s very old school (compatible with “HotJava 1.1, Internet Explorer 4.0 or Netscape Navigator 4.0”), but it worked liked a charm. I just unplugged our headphones for a second and dialed the extension in the web page. The computer heard itself, and connected us to our client. We are l33t f0ne phr3aks.
Skype 2.6 for the mac which came out today has the DTMF feature built in I think:
“DTMF tones for automatic answering services available also during Skype-to-Skype calls”
It’s not entirely true that “you canâ€™t [enter DTMF tones] using Skype.” I do so at least once per day, every weekday, to SkypeOut to the conference bridge at the home office — and I’m still using Skype 18.104.22.168. It hasn’t always been this way; until a few months ago, I regularly had to enter the passcode five to ten times (and redialing in after every three failed attempts) before it would “stick”.
I still occasionally run across a conference bridge (usually one of the toll-free services) that seemingly doesn’t accept DTMF tones from Skype. If this latest upgrade doesn’t do the trick, hopefully I’ll remember this applet.
Roland: Top tip! I shall download it and check it out.
I’ve got skype 3 in windows, and I’ve always been able to use the number pad to deal with voicemail etc. Just in case windows users are reading this, thinking all versions of skype don’t have this feature.
Looks like you snuck the words “Pool Deck” into yet another post….
You know, other people have them too – myself being one of those people.
Plus mine is probably nicer than yours.
DTMF tones just worked for me here on 22.214.171.124 / win xp
Interesting facts.I have bookmarked this site. stephanazs
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