Saturday, July 26, 2008

Video Chat using Gizmo5

...BTW I was sick for a couple of weeks with pneumonia...I can see why old people and those with damaged immune systems can die from sucks...

But anyway...

I used Netmeeting way back in the win95 days for Video chat. It worked ok, but there were always issues with cameras, drivers, etc...there have been many video conferencing systems since then.

One I just started playing with is called Gizmo5 (verson 4.0). It is beta (ok almost alpha) but works. There is a version for your PC (tried it) your Nokia N800, N810, or 770 (tried it on the N800), Mac, Linux, and one for your mobile phone (not tried).

I will say the setup is easy...however there are some odd things.

All I have are ICQ accounts, so I used that to log then pulled my contacts from ICQ. Fine.

I click the chat works like you would expect.

However if all you have is ICQ numbers...I couldn't figure out a way to add contacts...there was no ICQ option in the "Add Contact" I have to start up Trillian to add a contact...then run a chat script on Gizmo5 to re-import contacts...yes very clumsy.

Now I tried to call the computer from the N800...just rings on the sending end...hmmm.

I will cut to the chase. When you set up your account it automatically creates a SIP number

(SIP is used in all sorts of VOIP type things...I guess it is a standard)

However it does not tell you that, or post it anywhere important...nor do they tell you that you need the SIP number to make calls to your contacts.

So after messing around with that for hours...days...I realized that was missing. The SIP number is listed in the Gizmo5 "My Profile" under the "Edit" menu.

Now to use the Video chat you will have to send your entire SIP number to your buddy, and they have to place it into your contact info...yes it is just as clumsy as it sounds.

However once you have jumped through those hoops, (and assuming you have a camera attached) Video chat now works.

Of course dialing is still clumsy...probably because Gizmo5 seems to be more setup for they can make money off you...

To do a Voice or Video chat, you have to click on the contact in the list, (assuming they are online),...on the N800 software, you then click on the (blue) SIP number to the right of the entry.

...on the PC, click on their picture, then over in the "Profile" window that will open on your contact...there you click the (blue) SIP number.

Once you have done that, if you have a camera will start sending video (or if not, then click the camera Icon.

The N800 will send video if the camera is M1330 with built in camera will send video if you select video.

Is it the best...don't know, but it works. The other IM clients seem to have dropped video...especally for the N800...if you use the Nokia to call anything other than a Nokia, this seems to be the only way to send video.

If you want to see it in action, there are a number of YouTube videos on the subject...mostly from the N800 point of view it seems.

I said in the beginning it seems to be an early beta, but it does work. I haven't/won't try the mobile phone version...because my camera is on the opposite side of the screen...what good would that do?

(Screenshot on the PC...the lower right is the PC's camera...the Video on the N800 was better for some reason...)