Posts with tag skype
Microsoft CEO speaks
It’s almost fitting that Microsoft’s new CEO made one of his first public interviews as CEO of Microsoft at Re/code’s first ever Code Conference – and while there wasn’t exactly much talked about that we didn’t already know, Nadella did have a few nuggets of good information sprinkled about his interview with Walt Mossberg and Kara Swisher.
First, the CEO finally tackled head on the rumors that the company is planning on selling or spinning off their Xbox gaming business. The news is, of course, good – at least as far as those who work in the Xbox division are concerned. “I have no intent to do anything different with Xbox than we are doing today,” Nadella said, pointing out that in order to create software – the company’s “most malleable resource” – hardware such as the Xbox plays an important role.
Nadella also took the opportunity to introduce a brand new bit of functionality coming soon to the company’s Skype clients, a new feature called “Skype Translator” that is capable of translating foreign language in what appears to be essentially real time. The way it works is almost as impressive as the concept – the other person’s spoken word is translated as subtitles at the bottom of the window as they speak them, as seen in the video after the break.
Skype Translator will reportedly be entering beta for Windows 8 users later this year, with a broader release planned sometime after that. While the initial release will focus on bringing Skype Translate to the Windows 8 client, other versions of the application – including OS X, Windows 7, iOS, Android, and Windows Phone – will also be getting to join in on the fun.
It's under attack!
It’s safe to say that Microsoft’s new year isn’t off to an exceptional start as reports are indicating that Microsoft’s official Skype accounts on both Facebook and Twitter have been hacked by none other than the hacker group known as the Syrian Electronic Army.
The hacks, which appeared to take place earlier this morning, involved no risk to consumers or customers – unlike a certain Snapchat hack that was released this morning – but they are troubling signs that Microsoft hasn’t quite been able to lock down their accounts satisfactorily. Hackers posted numerous messages on Skype’s social media accounts as well as on the official Skype Blog, which can be seen in the screenshot above.
Posts made by the Syrian Electronic Army warned Microsoft customers not to “use Microsoft emails (hotmail,outlook), They are monitoring your accounts and selling the data to the governments.” While these accusations are far from new, we have no confirmed reports that this is absolutely the case – even if the NSA has been doing some pretty nasty dealings lately.
More flat, how's that
Skype (now owned by Microsoft) has always been pretty good to Apple and their mobile operating system iOS, and now that tradition is continuing with the release of an updated Skype for iOS application that takes advantage of iOS 7’s radical new UI/UX designs.
As you might have guessed, flat is very much in – we’ve got nary a gradient or a drop shadow in sight judging on these screenshots. All in all the application seems relatively unchanged barring the new UI, so if you’re in the market for an actually enhanced Skype experience on the functionality side of the equation you might be a little disappointed with this implementation. Many, however, will be happy to note that Skype has reportedly improved accessibility options for those who need them, making Skype a little bit easier to use for an important segment of the population.
Skype for iOS 7 has been released onto the App Store and is now available at the source link below, so get downloading!
Forcing users to switch to Skype
Well, we’ve known that this was coming for quite some time now, but now Microsoft has put the final nail in the coffin for Windows Live Messenger – the company’s famous IMing platform will cease to allow new connections as of April 8th for English speaking countries, essentially forcing users to make the switch over to Skype or lose their IMing capabilities altogether. This date effects all official desktop clients while third party ones are reportedly getting ready for an October shut down.
The one exception to this is Microsoft’s own Windows 8 and Windows Phone 8 Messenger applications, which will continue to work for the foreseeable future. But unless you’re an avid user of either of those apps, this really is the end of the road for the once beloved service. Ladies and gentlemen, start your Skype downloads.
Source: The Verge
Time to move to Skype
As announced a couple months ago, Microsoft is discontinuing Windows Live Messenger. What we didn’t know at that time was when the end would take place. Today, however, Microsoft has announced the end of Windows Live Messenger to take place on March 15th of this year.
That means the millions of Messenger users will now have to migrate over to Skype. The change should be near-seamless, as Skype accounts became Microsoft accounts with the release of Skype for Windows 8. All Messenger contacts have already been migrated to Skype; everyone just needs to install it.
After 13 years on the market under various names, it’s about time we moved on to something better.
Source: The Verge
Microsoft points users to Skype instead
Just a quick update to yesterday’s rumor that they’ll be retiring Microsoft Live Messenger (previously known as MSN Messenger) in favor of Microsoft’s new favorite acquisition, Skype, Microsoft has indeed just confirmed on the official Skype blog announcing that the Windows Live Messenger service will be closing its doors soon.
Windows Live Messenger will reportedly continue to function until the first quarter of 2013, though no firm dates have been set. After then, though, the long standing IM service (which was started in 1999) will cease to exist and be no more.
Ode to the artist formally known as MSN Messenger
According to sources within Microsoft as reported by The Verge, Microsoft has made the decision to and will be soon discontinuing their longstanding Windows Live Messenger IM service (previously known as MSN Messenger), and will be instead focusing all of its efforts on maintaining and improving Skype, which they obtained last year.
Microsoft will reportedly be announcing the end of Windows Live Messenger as early as this week. Many had wondered as to the fate of Windows Live Messenger going forward since Microsoft’s acquisition of Skype, seeing as the two services were clear competitors to one another.
We’ve reached out to Microsoft for a comment and will let you know if we hear anything.
Source: The Verge
For those worrying that Skype would now be essentially dead on its feet for more “traditional” desktop operating systems now that Microsoft has officially revealed their shiny new Windows 8/RT version of the application, worry no more. Microsoft has today released Skype 6.0 for both Windows and Mac OS X.
Notably, the new version of Skype now allows users to connect to the service using their Skype ID, Windows Live ID, or their Facebook account, which vastly increases the amount of potential users Skype can now reach. MSN/WLM IM integration is now built right in as users can use Skype to chat with their Windows Live Messenger buddies straight from Skype, and as soon as “in a couple of weeks” users will be able to audio and video chat with them as well.
Skype 6.0 is available for download now, so what’re you waiting for? The Windows 8 version? Pfft. This is kicking it old school.
(Yes, I realize that’s the app icon for the old iOS version. Yes, I do like it that way. So there.)
Source: Microsoft (Skype Blog)
Microsoft has just officially announced the newest version of their Skype application, which is now a WinRT application fully native to both Windows 8 and Windows RT. Neowin had previously revealed Skype for Windows 8 for the first tiem a couple of months ago, and it’s been seen numerous times in various Windows 8 and Windows RT products being cooked up by OEMs, but this is the first time Microsoft has gone public with the updated software.
Skype for Windows 8 retains all of the traditional Skype features and delivers it as a beautiful full screen Metro application. Contacts are viewed as live tiles which can be moved around and manipulated just as they can in the Windows 8 Start Screen. Contacts are also now integrated in Windows 8’s “People” application, along with Twitter, Facebook, Live contacts, and more.
Skype for Windows 8 will be released alongside Windows 8, Windows RT, and Microsoft Surface on October 26th. I’ve personally had a chance to play with a pre-release build a while back and walked away pretty impressed. It’ll certainly be a first day download for me.
One of the worst parts about Windows 8 is the fact that, if you ever want to run a “classic” Windows application that doesn’t run on the new Windows 8 user interface, you’re forcibly switched to the old school Windows UI, which makes multitasking and the two types of applications an absolute pain. Good news, though – if Skype is a critical part of your day and you’re planning on picking up a copy of Windows 8 when it’s released on October 26th, you’ll have no problem between the two: Skype is developing a 100% Windows 8 native version of their client, complete with most if not all of the features found in the old Windows “Classic” version.
Neowin’s got the scoop with a hands-on of the new client, and the found it to be not only working but actually pretty good, even in its presumably early beta state. Text chats and audio chats both worked as expected with zero crashes and zero dropped calls. It’s clear that Microsoft and Skype are putting a lot of effort into this to make it a first class application on the new Windows 8 UI.
Skype for Windows 8 will presumably be released either alongside or not long after Windows 8 is on the Windows App Store.
Skype has seemingly woke up and remembered that they have a Linux client available, and has apparently decided that it was high time to update the client to version 4.0. Skype lists the following as major new features on their blog post announcing the update:
- We have a new Conversations View where users can easily track all of their chats in a unified window. Those users who prefer the old view can disable this in the Chat options;
- We have a brand new Call View;
- Call quality has never been better thanks to several investments we made in improving audio quality; and
- We’ve worked on improving video call quality and have also extended support for more cameras
Skype has also dropped the “beta” label from the application (the previous version was Skype 2.2 Beta). Skype 4.0 for Linux is available now.
Well, all good things must come to an end: Nokia has decided that, despite their best efforts, the Skype for Windows Phone 7 client does not work at what they consider to be an “expected level”, and have thus removed the application from the Lumia 610’s Windows Phone Marketplace.
Skype and Microsoft had previous stated that Skype would not work on low-end “Tango” devices with only 256MB of RAM, such as the Lumia 610, but Nokia remained convinced that they could offer the application to their users anyways – until now, that is.
Check out Nokia’s full statement on the matter after the break!