One of the realities of today’s global world is often that our family and friends are spread out in many places. A generation or two ago, it was commonplace to visit Grandma and Grandpa’s house every Sunday for dinner, while your cousins lived just the next street over.
Today’s world is different. Your son or daughter may have ventured to California years ago for a job opportunity, while the opportunity to study abroad may have attracted your grandchildren to attend school in London or Paris.
While our loved ones are more spread out than ever, it has never been easier to communicate with our family members and friends, no matter where they are.
Try to take advantage of the beauty of modern-day technology. Here are three tips to stay in touch with our loved ones, no matter where they are:
While the ability to video call someone has been around for over 40 years, it’s only recently that the technology (as well as expense) has allowed for everyday people to use the service. Skype is the most popular common video calling service, allowing people to conduct meetings or stay in touch with loved ones by communicating face-to-face in real time.
Skype is free to use. All you will need to Skype is a computer (PC or Mac), or an electronic communication device, like an IPad or a smartphone. Of course, you’ll also need a web camera with your computer or device in order for you to send video. To register for a Skype account, visit www.skype.com.
In the social media world, Facebook is the most popular platform to communicate with others in the world – over 1 billion people use Facebook!
Like Skype, all you need to use Facebook is access to a computer or another device such as a tablet or smartphone. After creating an account (visit www.facebook.com) and profile, you can look up family and friends in order to start communicating with them by sending a “friend” request. After becoming friends with others on Facebook, you will have the ability to have conversations, send messages, post and view photos, and more.
While your intention in using Facebook may be to communicate with close friends or family, the service has a knack for helping long, lost friends reconnect after years apart. As part of its service, Facebook suggests friends for you to connect with after matching information from your profile and mutual friends.
Instagram is perhaps the fastest growing social media platform. The mobile app is a fun way to share the happenings in your life through a series of photos.
Instagram, which only works on a mobile device, is a free service that allows you to follow the happenings of your loved ones through viewing photos they post using their mobile phones. A fun feature of Instagram is that you can manipulate your own photos that you post by using filters on them to craft your preferred look.
After registering for an Instagram account (www.instagram.com) you can search for family and friends and choose to “follow” them. Instagram allows you the opportunity leave comments for photos, or to like the photo with a simple tap of the screen.