Video Chat Becomes Latest Holiday Tradition with a Surge of Use Reported over the Thanksgiving Weekend

Relationship Expert, Dr. Michelle, Recommends Video Chat as Ingredient to Stay Connected During the Holiday Season.

NEWYORK—December 4, 2008—ooVoo, an innovator in the way people communicate with real-time video, announced that more than one million people participated in video conversations during the Thanksgiving weekend. With fewer people making the annual pilgrimage to visit families due to higher travel costs and economic uncertainties, video chat has become a viable way for loved ones to connect and is set to become part of the holiday tradition for millions of Americans.

The upsurge in video communication traffic witnessed on ooVoo’s network from Thursday, November 27th through Sunday, November 30th, was more than double the company’s average weekly video communication activity for the first three quarters of 2008.

“ooVoo helps family and friends to share in each others lives and stay in touch with one another - no matter where in the world they happen to be,” said Philippe Schwartz, ooVoo’s CEO. "We sincerely hope being able to talk and interact face-to-face will help our troops serving overseas connect and feel closer with their family and friends back home."

As the next round of holiday celebrations approaches, relationship expert and frequent media commentator Dr. Michelle, has developed a range of strategies to help families overcome the "Quality Time Crunch."

"Nothing beats being with loved ones in person, but when this is simply not possible, advances in technology are proving to be invaluable for those in long distance romantic or family relationships" explains Dr. Michelle, psychologist and life coach for The N’s new reality competition "Queen Bees" and a regular contributor on the Today Show, CNN, BET, Tyra Banks Show and VH1. This season she has developed a number of tips and advice to help families stay and feel connected even if they’re miles away. Dr. Michelle’s insights include:

· Sharing common schedules – Develop a running order of the special day that both parties can follow individually. This encourages the feeling of sharing the day and creates common experiences to discuss later.

· Staging multi-way family video chats – Face-to-face interaction is much more impactful than verbal phone conversations, which lack the visual cues needed to communicate emotions effectively. With ooVoo people can chat face-to-face with up to 6 people at one time.

· Create remote family traditions – For example a long distance toast or lighting of a candle that can be performed to remind you of absent loved ones.

· Pre-plan shared interaction – Such as playing games together via the Web, and you can record these sessions and keep them as a memento of the day or share them with the wider family.

· Share recipes and menus – Connect with loved ones over the phone or webcam to help prepare meals and see who does it best.

· Record and send individual video messages – Prepared by an absent family member and played just before or after meal times. This makes the play back a landmark event for the day – this is also a great way to communicate across different time zones.

In addition to these tips, Dr. Michelle also notes that ooVoo video chat is a great solution as it brings a new dimension of interaction, allowing people to make important face-to-face connections with multiple family members at once, anywhere in the world for free.

“We attribute the growing use of ooVoo and video communications to a number of factors; we deliver a high quality video chat experience that is easy to use, only requiring a standard home broadband connection and a computer with a webcam, and consumers have embraced it,” said Philippe Schwartz, CEO of ooVoo. “People are looking for ways to maintain a face-to-face connection with family and friends especially with travel costs soaring. This coupled with retail brands such as Best Buy advertising the benefits of webcams on TV, has helped put video chat firmly on the map this holiday season.”

ooVoo is extremely easy to use and can be downloaded for free in a matter of minutes by visiting As well as providing one of the highest quality video experiences available, ooVoo, unlike competitor programs, works on both PCs and Macs and allows users of each system to talk to each other. Also unlike competitors it allows users to video chat with more than one person at a time, allowing three people to connect in its free version and up to six in its subscriber model. As well as talking face-to-face, families can use ooVoo to:

· Send instant chat messages (IM)

· Send files such as pictures and documents (up to 25 mb)

· Record and send video messages to other ooVoo users and to your friends’ email addresses

· Record and store video chats and take still photos from your conversation

· Have fun with video effects that can change your image and background

· Make telephone calls within the U.S. and Canada

To experience ooVoo please visit

About ooVoo

ooVoo provides a high-quality video communication service that delivers a more meaningful way for people to call and connect over the Internet. ooVoo’s technology enables people to experience a face-to-face conversation and share a full range of emotions as if they are in the same room together, whether they are across the street or across the globe from each other. ooVoo’s superior quality video and audio is available to anyone with a computer, broadband connection and a webcam, for real-time video calls with up to six friends, relatives and colleagues simultaneously. ooVoo’s high quality video chat service includes high-resolution video, video conversation recording, telephony, video messaging, instant message chat and file sharing amongst other capabilities.

ooVoo is privately held and headquartered in NewYork, NY. You can learn more and download free ooVoo software at

Media Contacts:

Lisa Abourezk

Pamela Johnston



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ooVoo ID: oovoolisa

ooVoo ID: Pamela Johnston