APP OF THE DAY: Qik Video Connect (Android)

If you've got yourself a fancy new Android handset with a front-facing cam, then chances are you'll be looking around for a decent video calling app to make the most of it. Well, this could be your lucky day as Qik Video Connect is now available to all and what's more, it's free.

Qik Video Connect (Android)

Android 2.1 or later
Android Market

Qik - the mobile video company recently acquired by Skype - has introduced a new Android version, now known as Qik Video Connect. According to the makers, this is the only mobile video calling platform that enables video mail and it also lets Android phone-toting gadget fans chat with pals on both Android handsets and on Apple iPhones (even if it's unlikely that die-hard Fandroids will allow themselves to have any friends that own iPhones and vice versa). Video mail will be available for free until 1 June, after which you'll be charged, although receiving video mails will continue to be free.

Qik has previously offered its video calling expertise to Android users through selected carriers and manufacturers including Sprint, T-Mobile and HTC, but this is the first time that it will be available to the masses via the Android Market, rather than as a pre-loaded app.

As well as offering video calls over Wi-fi, 3G (and 4G, if you've got it where you live), you can also share your videos with more then one person, as Qik Video Connect is fully tooled up with social networking capability so that you can keep your Facebook friends, Twitter followers and YouTube subscribers up to speed.

Unfortunately, a quick test of the app proved to be something of a total failure. As you can see, the call was successfully made - over Wi-Fi between an iPhone 4 and Samsung Galaxy S II - but not only was the image quality poor, there was also lag, the sound was atrocious and the software didn't seem to support the accelerometer and its auto-rotate. In short, it was unusable. Fingers crossed a swift update will fix these problems as, the practice to one side, in theory it's a winner.