Skype Goes Modern in Windows 8 App

The revamped Skype is designed to be in tune with Windows 8, with a refreshed interface, call and contact lists, and support for Snap.

Just in time for the launch of Windows 8, Skype is getting a new modern-style app to take advantage of all the operating system's features.

Given that Microsoft owns Skype, it's no surprise that the Windows 8 app is a model for the new modern interface. The app appears as a Live Tile on the Windows 8 Start screen, and shows a preview of missed calls or new messages. The app also runs constantly in the background--though Skype says this doesn't drain battery life--and delivers notifications for new calls or messages.

Inside the app, the main screen shows a list of recent interactions and favorite contacts, followed by a list of all contacts that scrolls off to the right. A small phone logo on this screen leads to a dialer for direct calls to landlines and mobile phones, using Skype credit or a subscription.

Perhaps the most useful feature in Skype's Windows 8 app is its support for Snap. Users can drag the app to the right or left sidebar, and continue to see their video calls while using other apps. The sidebar shows a portrait view of the person on the other end, with a thumbnail view of the user underneath.

One thing that's missing from Skype's Windows 8 app is support for the Share charm, which lets any two apps share information with one another. The CAPability to grab links or photos from within other apps and send them to a Skype contact would certainly be useful, especially while a conversation is snapped to the sidebar. A Skype representative says the company is working to support sharing from the Windows 8 charms menu in the future.

Outside of the app itself, Skype integrates with Windows 8's People app, which acts as a central location for email addresses, phone numbers and other contact methods. Users can connect Skype to the People app by logging into Skype with a Microsoft account.

Skype for Windows 8 will be available on October 26, the same day that Microsoft's new operating system launches. Skype's blog post says you can find the app "on your new Windows 8 device and or download it from the Windows Store," so it may be pre-installed on some new Windows hardware.

Tags Windows 8skypetelecommunicationvoipMicrosoftWindowssoftwareoperating systems

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Jared Newman

PC World (US online)

Comments

Comments are now closed.

Latest News Articles

Most Popular Articles

Follow Us

GGG Evaluation Team

Kathy Cassidy

STYLISTIC Q702

First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.

Anthony Grifoni

STYLISTIC Q572

For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.

Steph Mundell

LIFEBOOK UH574

The Fujitsu LifeBook UH574 allowed for great mobility without being obnoxiously heavy or clunky. Its twelve hours of battery life did not disappoint.

Andrew Mitsi

STYLISTIC Q702

The screen was particularly good. It is bright and visible from most angles, however heat is an issue, particularly around the Windows button on the front, and on the back where the battery housing is located.

Simon Harriott

STYLISTIC Q702

My first impression after unboxing the Q702 is that it is a nice looking unit. Styling is somewhat minimalist but very effective. The tablet part, once detached, has a nice weight, and no buttons or switches are located in awkward or intrusive positions.

Resources

Best Deals on GoodGearGuide

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?