Skype’s huge redesign publicly launches to desktop customers


Earlier this yr, Skype launched a revamped model of its software providing a heavier give attention to media sharing and social expression instruments, in an effort to raised compete with extra trendy social communication companies, like Slack and even Snapchat. Immediately, the corporate is publicly launching the brand new model of Skype to the desktop, together with on Mac, Home windows 10 (November 2016 replace and decrease), Home windows eight, Home windows 7, and Linux.

The app had been in Preview on the desktop since August.

Throughout that point, Microsoft says it responded to consumer suggestions in figuring out which options to prioritize, because it transitioned Skype’s new look to the desktop platform.

As an illustration, one among Skype’s extra controversial options – a Snapchat “Tales”-like mode known as “Highlights” – shouldn’t be accessible within the desktop app right now. The choice was made primarily based straight on Skype testers’ suggestions, we perceive. Whereas the corporate nonetheless desires so as to add Highlights to the desktop in a later launch, for now it stays a mobile-only function.

As an alternative, if you wish to share what you’re as much as together with your Skype contacts on desktop, you possibly can change your presence or set a temper message, because of the return of standing updates.


Nevertheless, the brand new desktop model of Skype does embrace most of the different modifications launched within the redesign, together with its total extra colourful and youthful really feel. In group conversions, as an example, every individual’s messages will be color-coded in shades of blue, orange and pink, with the choice to “react” to messages with emoji icons, much like how one can reply in Fb’s Messenger.

These response emoji can be found throughout video calls, too, permitting you to ship a giant emoji that’s quickly overlaid on high of the video caller’s window. It’s the type of function that makes Skype appear to be it’s aiming for a younger demographic, slightly than one which serves its skilled use circumstances.


The up to date Skype additionally contains personalization choices, like potential to theme the app (e.g., with a brand new, darker theme, which is at the moment en vogue with apps like Twitter and YouTube), and the power to arrange your contact listing to your liking. You may manage contacts by time, unread or standing, in addition to pin folks and teams to have them extra simply accessible.

One of many new Skype’s extra helpful options is the media gallery related to every chat that helps you shortly find shared content material from a dialog, like media, hyperlinks and information. This may be sorted by kind, too, for simpler searches. And since file sharing is cloud-based, you possibly can ship information as much as 300 MB.

Like most social apps right now, now you can use @mentions to seize an individual’s consideration in a chat, and like rivals Slack, Messenger, and others, Skype permits you to use bots and add-ins to get issues finished. As an illustration, a Hipmunk, Expedia, and StubHub bots show you how to e book tickets; Microsoft’s Scoop bot retains you up to date on the information; Giphy permits you to share GIFs inside chats; whereas different add-ins allow you to schedule occasions, ship cash, and carry out different duties. (Bots are broadly accessible; however add-ins can be found to Skype Insiders just for now).

Microsoft declined to say what number of whole lively customers Skype right now has, which hints that it hasn’t grown considerably because the 300 million month-to-month customers the corporate introduced finally yr’s Construct convention. (For comparability’s sake, Skype’s newest challenger within the office, Slack, introduced 6 million each day customers in September. Skype, in different phrases, is probably not as ‘cool,’ however it’s nonetheless an app utilized by a large group.)

Nevertheless, Microsoft did level out that Skype has now surpbaded a billion downloads on Android, has generated 2 trillion minutes of video calls since 2006, and right now’s customers make as much as three billion minutes of calls per day.

The brand new model of Skype for desktop can both be downloaded manually, or could also be rolled out through automated updates, if enabled. Home windows 10 customers larger than the November 2016 replace will obtain an replace with the brand new options.

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