Today at the Pennsylvania Art Education Association Board meeting in Kutztown, the iPad served as a “stand in” for two colleagues who could not be physically present. The iPad rested on an acrylic craft easel at the place to my left in the board room. In front of it was the placard representing the voting member. It was if she was sitting next to me. Later in the day another colleague Skyped in from home to the meeting.
In both cases we tested Skype calls with the iPad and then with the macbook. I am told by James and Leslie that the quality was the same using the iPad or macbook to originate a Skype call for the teleconference. They spoke with us for about an hour each with great success. We were able to hear them talking in a large room without additional speakers. The built-in microphone on the iPad worked well to pick up individual voices in a group of about 20 people. Skype does not offer an iPad app yet but the iPhone/iPod touch app works fine. I simply set it to the 2x view to enlarge the graphics to fill the screen.The only thing that is missing on the is video capability. It also works well for VOIP calls. In fact, last month when my cell phone battery was dead and charger missing I placed a call from my iPad to a regular phone line. The sound quality was comparable to a cellular connection!