How to Build Your Skype Contact List on an Android Phone

By Dan Gookin

Text, voice, and video chat on Skype over the Internet are free. If you can use a Wi-Fi connection, you can chat on your Android phone without incurring a loss of your cellular plan’s data quota. Before you can talk, however, you need to connect with another Skype user.

Yes, the other person must have a Skype account. Further, the person must agree to your request to become a Skype contact.

The Skype app can scan your phone’s address book for any potential Skype subscribers you may have missed. The operation can take some time — like, over an hour — though it’s worth the time you spend waiting. To find your friends on Skype, follow these steps:

  1. Touch the Contacts button on the Skype app’s main screen.

  2. Press the Menu soft button.

  3. Choose Search Address Book.

  4. Touch the Continue button.

    This operation can take some time. Be patient.

    You can snooze the phone while Skype is plowing through the address book.

    Eventually, you see a list of Skype contacts that the Skype app has found in your Contacts list.

  5. Touch the Continue button.

  6. Remove the check marks by the contacts you do not want to add.

    The Skype app lists all contacts it could find who have Skype accounts. If you add these contacts (see Step 7), a Skype request is sent to each one. If you don’t want to send a request to someone in the list, remove the check mark by that contact’s name.

    Be sure to check the list! Skype searches for matching text, not for individuals, so random and unusual Skype contacts will doubtlessly show up in the list.

  7. Touch the Add button.

  8. Type an introductory message.

    The contact has to approve you as a Skype buddy.

  9. Touch the Add Contacts button.

    The contacts are added to the Contacts tab, but they sport the question mark status until they agree to accept your Skype invitation.

If scanning the phone’s address book doesn’t do the job, you can try searching for a specific contact:

  1. Touch the Contacts button on the Skype app’s main screen.

  2. Press the Menu soft button.

  3. Choose Add Contacts.

  4. Type a name or phone number.

  5. Touch the Search button to start the search.

  6. Scroll the list of results to find the exact person you’re looking for.

    If your friend has a common name, the list is extensive. You can use city information to help narrow the list, but not every Skype user specifies a current city. The Skype username may also help you identify specific people.

  7. Touch an entry to add it to your Contacts list.

    You see a full-page description for the contact, where you can choose to call them, chat on Skype, or add them to your Contacts list.

  8. Touch the Add button.

No matter how you add someone to your list, you see the Question Mark icon as that person’s status until they agree to accept your request.