As far as I can tell, most entrepreneurs also have this on their goal-sheet, possibly as their top goal for going into business on their own. So why is it that even the simplest technologies don’t support this?
Take soho office phones, for example. In order to get a basic “after hours” switch, I have to spend $600 on a Talkswitch24 (highly recommended.) Every other phone system requires that you remember to flip a switch at night. I don’t even know of cell phones that have after hours modes despite their full-featured OSs.
So now, I’m a heavy Skype user. More and more of my clients are using it, and for good reason. It’s cheap, it’s crystal clear, and the chat mode on it is fully encrypted. End of those praises, leave it at that.
Skype is really light on features (just look at Pamela’s offering and you get a feeling for what’s missing… VOIP voice mail, call recording, and voice memos are some incredibly useful things that Pamela allows.) But neither allow you to set your business hours and have Skype adjust your phone modes based on them.
I know, give and take, features are risk, etc. Few people probably want it. So what I propose to the Ebay-Skype empire is that you add several simple command line options. I will use Windows scheduler to send the right commands to Skype’s command line This should require almost ZERO code change for Skype Engineers.
Current Skype Command Line Options
/nosplash – do not display splash screen when Skype starts
/minimized – Skype is minimized to system tray when it starts
/callto:nameornumber – call the specified Skype Name or SkypeOut number
/shutdown – close Skype
Command Line Wishlist Options To Support “having a life”
/mode=m – set running Skype into mode m
/forward=number – forward my Skype calls to this number
/forwardstop=number – stop forwarding my Skype calls to this number
with the “mode” command, I’d set up a scheduled windows event that would change it to “do not disturb mode” after 7:00 PM, and then turn it back to “available” at 7:30 AM. It would be unavailable Sat and Sunday.
With forward modes, I’d set up a shortcut on my start menu that would turn forwarding to my cell phone on or off. One click and it’s forwarded, one click and it’s not.
I really don’t want to add-on anything. Pamela gives me enough headaches with Skype. But if you know of something please speak up.