I love Ubuntu, but one thing I think is a pain is skype for it. It's outdated, buggy and generally just not as smooth as a lot of the other Ubuntu software.

Is there an alternative for it? I'm not speaking about another IM like AIM or Live Messenger. Put another piece of software like the native app that comes with Ubuntu, that allows me to sign into Skype as well? Or is there perhaps a plugin for the native Ubuntu chat app that allows Skype contacts, calling etc. etc.

  • 2
    Can I suggest you look at this Q&A: askubuntu.com/questions/9065/how-to-integrate-skype-into-pidgin
    – fossfreedom
    Apr 10, 2012 at 15:46
  • @fossfreedom .similar question ,but not duplicate
    – Tachyons
    Apr 10, 2012 at 15:56
  • ... I know - just pointing out that there is a question that he may wish to consider.
    – fossfreedom
    Apr 10, 2012 at 15:57
  • A true alternative, that does not connect with or through Skype, is the Web based Ubiqq.com. You send a unique url by IM and then connect in video chat.
    – user4815
    Apr 10, 2012 at 18:00
  • brosix.com/download/linux - another great Skype alternative
    – user164091
    Jun 3, 2013 at 12:14

9 Answers 9


If you mean alternative Skype client, no such tool exists because protocol used in the Skype is closed and they didn't published the source code of Skype. So you can't access Skype through another client.

You can use empathy for most of the other services though.


You can use Skype under pidgin using Skype plug-in. But even then, you are actually using Skype in the background using Skype API.


  1. http://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=2536410
  2. https://superuser.com/questions/5774/do-any-multi-client-im-clients-support-skype-chat
  3. http://community.skype.com/t5/Mac/Skype-Client-Alternative/td-p/159100
  • 1
    They do have a library that can be used by third party developers. Jun 16, 2013 at 8:56
  • 6
    Skype API is murdered by M$. R.I.P.
    – omikron
    Jul 2, 2014 at 9:45
  • pidgin don't have file sending feature(disable) for skype.
    – shantanu
    Jul 18, 2014 at 18:12
  • Sometimes a VM machine with Android can save your day. Sometimes Wine can save your day too.
    – m3nda
    May 23, 2015 at 23:16
  • 1
    Damn Microsoft. Aug 28, 2015 at 16:34

Well, recently, I just embedded the beta Skype client within node webkit and I'm using it as an alternative client, on Linux. Repository here.

enter image description here

  • Great Job Dude... :D
    – Sagar Guhe
    Nov 5, 2015 at 7:32
  • It works great, I'd love to see something such as the skype integrator for gnome working with it ;)
    – Kotshi
    Nov 23, 2015 at 14:28
  • 1
    I can't stop using linux.
    – lyhong
    Jan 4, 2016 at 5:59
  • This works! Fantastic. Only for IM though - it says "audio and video calls are not supported on your OS"?
    – alle_meije
    Jan 29, 2016 at 15:32
  • @alle_meije it uses skype for web, hence it's limited by the capabilities of it. Probably receiving files like rar and pdf won't be supported yet either Feb 19, 2016 at 22:27

You can install the pidgin-skype Install pidgin-skype package from the Software Centre (or using apt-get)

This protocol plug-in allows libpurple to communicate with Skype. Applications using libpurple (Pidgin, Finch, Empathy/Telepathy, etc.) can thus show your Skype contacts alongside those from other protocols, and you can communicate with them using that application instead of the Skype user interface.

This plug-in communicates with the Skype application in the background to perform its work, so it's necessary to have Skype installed and running. This product uses the Skype API but is not endorsed, certified or otherwise approved in any way by Skype.

This answer is from How to integrate Skype into Pidgin? (user fluteflute )


You can use Skype Web, it almost looks like windows version.

  • Thanks! Not bad indeed, maybe a Chrome app? Aug 28, 2015 at 16:36
  • 2
    It says Audio and Video calls are not supported in your OS.
    – M.Sameer
    Sep 20, 2015 at 9:50
  • Skype for web sadly doesn't support receving files like pdf and such, which is a bummer if you use skype for work. Feb 19, 2016 at 22:25
  • Skype for web now supports sending and receiving arbitrary files (through their server, of course, no P2P)
    – Tobia
    Oct 19, 2016 at 14:13

Goober messenger by far is the best VOIP, video chat & text chat client I have found. OoVoo would be my second runner up, both are far better than Skype. However, all communications using Goober are encrypted for security and Goober uses very little memory. Goober is completely free and does not have any ads unlike ooVoo.

Goober also does not use supernodes like Skype does therefore freeing up lots of bandwidth. Goober has a simple and very clean interface as well. Try it out, I guarantee you will like it far better than any other similar program, even more specifically Skype!


Pidgin + SkypeWeb Plugin for Pidgin

This plugin communicates via Skype Web API, so you can use it without Skype application at all.

But note, Skype Web API still in beta, and "SkypeWeb Plugin for Pidgin" uses HTTP protocol.


There is also outlook.com [1] which I have been using lately. IMO it's minimal version available on the web you can use to chat with Skype contacts. I'm surprised no one hack around it a better GUI.

[1] You must link your Skype account with your Outlook account to make it work.


If you use Chrome (or Chromium) browser you can get a good Skype extension from the here on the chrome.google.com webstore.

enter image description here


Jitsi Videobridge



into the address bar in Firefox or Chrome and send the link to whoever you want (multipe user support). Enable mic and camera when prompted of course.

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