Skype is a global communications platform that had over 300 million active users in 2019, with more expected these days thanks to an increase in our reliance on virtual meetings.
With that many people trying to connect, Skype had to make sure no two people could be confused, and so they created the Skype ID.
How do you get a Skype ID?
When you first sign up for an account with Skype, you’ll be given a unique ID, except for older users who were able to create their own unique username. Today’s Skype ID is a combination of random letters and numbers that help identify each user, and it’s easy to find out what yours is by looking at your profile.
If you’re an avid user of the platform but have been wondering, what is my Skype ID, we’re here to help.
We’ve got the basics on what this unique identifier is all about and how to find yours, so you’re better equipped to use Skype for your business communications.
What is A Skype ID?
A Skype ID is the unique identifier that’s given to you when you create an account with the telecommunications application.
When Skype was first released, users were able to make up their own ID with a unique username that was connected to their account, but since Microsoft purchased the platform, it’s now randomly generated for you when you sign up.
The Skype ID that you’re given isn’t so much of a username as it is a random assortment of numbers and letters. The code always starts with the word ‘live’ and then the code, and if you’re looking for it in your settings or profile, it’s usually referred to as your Skype name only.
The Importance of Your ID
Having a Skype ID is important as it sets you apart from other users and is a unique identifier for each person using the application.
Unlike a surname, phone number, or primary email address that can change, this ID number never will, so no matter how your details get modified over the years, this one will stay the same.
When Microsoft implemented the random ID generator after it acquired Skype, it was done as a way to get rid of the username issue that people had. Rather than having to think of a username or finding that whatever you’d wanted to use was taken, the ID was a replacement that allowed people to be identified uniquely but still have the option to change their contact name as needed.
With this many users on Skype, simply having a first name and surname isn’t enough to identify most people. If you had a common name, like John Smith, people would have to search through thousands of other users, but the random ID generated for you makes sure there’s only one.
Where to Find Your Unique Identifier
If you were part of the early era of Skype, before Microsoft purchased it and took over, you might remember what you set as your username.
However, for those in the post-Microsoft version of Skype sign-ups, or anyone with a bad memory, you can find your Skype name by opening your profile.
Click on your profile picture which should give you some options to choose from, and then select Skype Profile. Under this part, you’ll see all of your basic information and how it’s displayed to other users.
The Skype ID is the bunch of random letters and numbers all jumbled up, and you can copy and paste the code if you need to share it with others. There’s no need to attach the “live:” prefix that everyone has on Skype, but you can if you think it makes it easier to read.
One of the most confusing things about Skype is that your username and ID are hard to differentiate, so you have to know what you’re looking for. In your profile settings, you’ll see the unique ID code under ‘Skype Name’ and your display name under ‘Name’.
Your display name is the one that people will see when they talk to you, and it’s easy to change this at any time.
Skype for Business and IDs
Skype for Business is the business-savvy version of Skype, and Microsoft has announced plans to halt its use entirely by the end of July 2021.
This platform used a different ID process altogether, so if you had a standard Skype account and a business one, it made matters a little harder.
The Skype for Business ID was set by whatever email address you used to create the account, and this is the same one you’ll use to sign in. Unlike the standard Skype software, there’s no unique code given here.
To find someone on Skype for Business, you’ll need their email address. However, they don’t allow people to search for contacts as easily as they can on regular Skype. This was among just one of the many issues that the now-defunct business platform had, which made way for Microsoft Team.
On Microsoft Team, they also use a unique identifier or UID for each team, and then there can be different users within that group. This ID forms the basis of everything you do on Team as well as administrative privileges, so it’s important to know where to get it.
Open the three-dot menu next to your team’s name, select Get Link to Team, copy the code, and then paste it wherever you need.
Can You Change a Skype ID?
Unfortunately, there’s no way to change your Skype ID once it’s been given to you, so you’re stuck with whatever it is.
The good news is, nobody ever really sees this random assortment of numbers and letters, so you’re the only one who has to know about it.
There are lots of other things you can change with your Skype account though, primarily your name. This is the display name that others see when they talk to you, use to look you up, and is usually just your full name. The bonus is you have your unique Skype ID to back it up, so if there are more than one of you in the world, people can easily find you.
For those with an old account who created their Skype profile years ago before Microsoft acquired it, you might want to get rid of whatever your old, embarrassing moniker is.
The best approach here is to delete the account altogether and start a new one. This will get rid of the previous username you had and assign you with a random code, which you might prefer as a more discreet way to use the communications app.
Identify Yourself on Skype
If you’re a regular user of Skype, knowing how to quickly find your ID or code is important, and it’s what sets you apart from the hundreds of millions of users on there.
Although there’s no way to change this specific name, you can change your display name with ease, and that’s the only thing that others will see when talking to you.
Skype is just one of a handful of popular telecommunications applications used around the world, and with millions of active users each week, it’s helpful to have an ID to set everyone apart.
To learn more about what Skype has to offer for business communications and webinars, read these FAQs for a run down.
Can I Use Skype Without an Account?
If you need to attend a Skype meeting that someone else is hosting but you don’t have an account, you can follow a link using the browser-based platform instead.
During this type of meeting, you’ll be able to chat to up to 300 participants using text only, or 25 people if it’s a video or voice call. There are other limitations in place that make it less functional than the downloadable software, but it’s handy for one-time use.
Is Skype Safe?
Skype has undergone criticism in the past for security flaws and has made continual efforts to update its software so that it’s safe for users.
As part of their standard security measures, they encrypt communication between parties, have secure payment methods, and monitor the activities of users for safety, with these protocols always being upgraded as needed.
What Is Microsoft Team?
Microsoft Team is a business communications platform created by Microsoft and has become the replacement tool for people who once used Skype for Business.
Within Team, you can collaborate and communicate with others in your company, make video and audio calls, host webinars, perform scheduling, and keep in sync with your co-workers.