Last week, Microsoft Skype team announced that they are ending the Skype Desktop APIs to focus on improving other experiences around Skype. However, Skype team today announced that Skype Desktop APIs for call recording and compatibility with hardware devices is not going away. The investments we’re making in Skype – to a highly mobile, cloud connected world – come with some key changes to our application and service architecture, and by extension – our support for the Desktop API used by 3rd party developers to extend Skype functionality.  Previously we shared that we would retire the Desktop API later this year. However, I’m happy to share that we will be extending support for two of the most widely used features – call recording and compatibility with hardware devices – until we determine alternative options or retire the current solution. Although chat via third party applications, will cease to work as previously ...

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Microsoft Skype recently announced that they are discontinuing Skype Desktop API in order to deliver consistent experience across all the platforms. They have explained their decision with the following message, We’ve been working hard to develop new technologies and make improvements that will benefit Skype users across all platforms, especially on mobile devices. These changes will significantly improve the call quality and speed of delivery of instant messages, while retaining excellent battery life of mobile devices. As people are using Skype on more devices, we’re also working hard to create a more familiar and consistent Skype experience across all major platforms. The Desktop API was created in 2004 and it doesn’t support mobile application development. We have, therefore, decided to retire the Desktop API in December 2013. If you’d like to provide us with your feedback, simply start Skype and go to Help > Give feedback. Your opinion is important ...

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Luxembourg’s data protection commissioner is investigating Skype over concerns about its secret involvement with the US National Security Agency (NSA) spy program Prism, the Guardian has learned.  The Microsoft-owned internet chat company could potentially face criminal and administrative sanctions, including a ban on passing users’ communications covertly to the US signals intelligence agency.  Skype itself is headquartered in the European country, and could be fined if an investigation concludes that the data sharing is found in violation of the country’s data-protection laws.  Luxembourg’s data-protection commissioner initiated a probe into Skype’s privacy policies following revelations in June about its ties to the NSA. Luxembourg has attracted several large corporations, including Amazon and Netflix, due to its tax structure.  Its constitution enshrines the right to privacy and states that secrecy of correspondence is inviolable unless the law provides otherwise.  Surveillance of communications in Luxembourg can only occur with judicial approval or by authorization ...

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Microsoft today detailed the upcoming Skype experience in Windows 8.1. Skype app will come pre-installed in all Windows 8.1 devices and it allows users to have free text, audio and video chat among users. Apart from the Skpye’s own capabilities, Skype team has made the app to take advantage of all the new Windows 8.1 platform features. Skype team worked closely with Windows engineering team to make sure Skype was seamlessly integrated with Windows 8.1. For example, new to Windows 8.1, users can answer an incoming Skype call from their lock screen, launch apps side-by-side with Skype and scale to the size of your device. Being part of Microsoft has opened up doors and increased collaboration and innovation across products. With Windows, we had a unique seat at the table to help inform the product from the ground up. One such example is the ability for users to answer Skype ...

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Microsoft today released an update for Skype app for Android tablets. This new v4.4 brings in new look that puts conversations first, displaying your most recent calls and chats, improved video call quality up to four times the resolution of previous versions, with enhanced clarity and frame rates. In addition, Skype for Android 4.4 has several bug fixes and quality improvements: Accessibility improvements with full support for TalkBack screen reader Updates that address incoming call issues, including one that was causing phones to reboot Additional changes to audio routing Display and UX enhancements when switching orientation You can download the update starting today in the Play Store. It will be available for the Kindle Fire tablets later this month. ...

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In a blog post talking about technological improvements that were made in Skype to improve the overall experience over the last year, Skype team revealed that they are bringing synchronized chat message status across all of your devices. I assume with this new feature, you will be able to continue your conversation with someone exactly the same way across the devices at any points. Your unread messages, past conversations, etc, will all be synced. Along with introducing support for Microsoft account in October last year, the Skype cloud also added the ability to queue and deliver chat messages even if the intended recipient is offline – so you can be ‘always reachable’ to the people who matter most. With Windows Phone 8 (and soon across other Skype mobile clients), this technology enables you to receive notifications when new messages arrive regardless of whether the Skype app is running. We also ...

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Microsoft is really starting to make its case as a ‘Devices & Services’ company.  Customers who purchase a new Surface 2 or Surface Pro 2 will get: To help people get the most out of Surface 2 and Surface Pro 2, customers purchasing either device will receive free Skype calling to landlines in more than 60 countries for one year, unlimited Skype WiFi on their Surface 2 or Surface Pro 2 at more than 2 million hot spots worldwide for one year, and 200 GB of free SkyDrive storage for two years. ...

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Microsoft today released updates for Skype for iPhone and Skype for iPad. This v4.12 update brings better call quality, accessibility improvements, and the new ‘Join Call’ button for group voice calls. Latest improvements: ✓ Join ongoing group voice calls right from your iPhone or iPad, as requested by many of you in the iTunes app store. ✓ Voice and video call quality improvements. ✓ Accessibility improvements. ✓Dialpad improvements. ✓Get help by accessing FAQs from the app. ✓ General fixes and speed improvements. Download Skype for iPhone and Skype for iPad applications from the Apple App Store. Source: Skype blog ...

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Microsoft Skype team announced the pre-release version of Skype for Windows 8.1 devices. This pre-release version will offer fully integrated Skype on any Windows 8.1 device. Since Skype is built-in, you can now view your missed calls and instant messages, but you can answer calls directly from your lock screen. And on the Start screen, you’ll be able to choose how you want to respond, whether answer a call with video, audio or decline and send an IM instead. Also with Skype for Windows 8.1, you can click to call directly through Internet Explorer, which makes booking a restaurant reservation a faster and more productive experience. In Windows 8.1, Skype will automatically move to the side when you select any link in Skype or shared item, enabling you to do more while you chat. You can also snap Skype and adjust the size of the window, so whether you’re watching ...

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Signs of collaboration at Microsoft?! *gasp* On his blog today, Major Nelson announced that the Xbox One will be using Skype’s audio codec for a premium audio experience.  Nelson reports: Thanks to integration with Skype’s audio codec, which has a proven track record of high-quality voice through billions of hours of use within Skype, as well as dedicated audio processing (for Xbox One conversations via Skype and multiplayer party chats), Xbox One offers higher quality voice chat with the Xbox One Chat Headset compared to Xbox 360—whether you’re chatting in-game or through party chat with Skype on Xbox One. But the improvements don’t stop there. The Xbox One Wireless Controller’s new expansion port dramatically expands the data transfer rate between the controller and console. Combined with Skype’s audio codec, this enables crystal-clear digital audio with the Xbox One Chat Headset, both capturing and rendering speech at 24 KHz PCM, which ...

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According to Microsoft’s corporate vice-president for Skype Mark Gillett, Skype team is already working on making 3D video calls possible. In fact, they already have a working version in the labs, but didn’t launch to the public due to lack of 3D Eco-system which includes 3D camera, 3D displays, etc,. “We’ve seen a lot of progress in screens and a lot of people now buy TVs and computer monitors that are capable of delivering a 3D image. “But the capture devices are not yet there. As we work with that kind of technology you have to add multiple cameras to your computer, precisely calibrate them and point them at the right angle. “We have it in the lab, we know how to make it work and we’re looking at the ecosystem of devices and their capability to support it in order to make a decision when we might think about ...

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Microsoft today announced the availability of Skype for Outlook.com in several countries around the globe including the United Kingdom, Germany, Brazil, France, Canada, and the United States. Microsoft also said that for the those in the other countries, they are still working hard to ensure it is available worldwide in the near future. Microsoft is celebrating the launch of Skype on Outlook.com with a small contest,  To celebrate the availability of Skype for Outlook.com in the United States we have partnered with Gail Simmons, food expert and author. As a busy professional who is always on the go, Gail understands the importance of keeping in touch with friends and family. We partnered with her to announce a contest where consumers can submit a recipe for a chance to make a video call with Gail via Skype for Outlook.com. For every entry Outlook.com will donate $10 to Common Threads, a charity ...

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Microsoft Skype team today confirmed that modern Skype app will come pre-installed in Windows 8.1. So, hundreds of millions of Windows and Skype users will be able to enjoy text, audio and video messaging experience out of the box on their Windows PCs. This is fantastic news for both Skype and Windows users. Now you don’t have to download your favorite app to stay in touch whenever you’re apart. With Windows 8.1, simply log in and you’re ready to go. This means not only will you be able to reach over 300 million Skype users across many different devices but also everyone with a Windows 8.1 PC. By simply searching and adding contacts to your People list in Skype – the people you care about are at your fingertips, and you are in control of who those contacts are. Communicating, connecting and sharing should be a seamless part of every Windows experience, and Skype for ...

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Microsoft Skype today updated their Skype app for iOS devices which brings in new improvements such as HD video call support in iPad 4. Enjoy free voice and video calls to anyone else who is on Skype and make HD  quality video calls from your iPad 4. Message friends and send photos in an instant, send Video messaging, etc,. Change log: Call quality improvements - Make HD quality video calls from your iPad 4. - General improvements to call quality and stability. General fixes and improvements - A redesigned country code picker on the dial pad. Download it here from App Store for free. ...

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This might turn into an another PR nightmare for Microsoft Xbox One. Xbox LIVE Gold features  are compared between Xbox 360 and Xbox One consoles in a page on Xbox.com. As you can see, there are list of items that comes under Xbox LIVE Gold on Xbox One. Multiplayer Gaming Entertainment Apps IE on TV The NFL on Xbox OneGuide Game DVR Skype SmartMatch Exclusive deals and special offers. While Multiplayer gaming, exclusive deals and special offers, OneGuide, The NFL on Xbox, SmartMatch may involve costs behind it, I’ve no idea why Microsoft still wants to charge Entertainment Apps,  IE on TV, Skype (really?), GameDVR, etc,. What do you think? Source: Xbox.com via: Neowin ...

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  Microsoft Skype yesterday announced the free WiFi availability for Skype Premium users in over 1 million hotspots around the world. If you are a frequent traveler, then this is a great deal for you. Read more about it below. It doesn’t have to be this way. With Skype WiFi, you can buy just as much WiFi as you need. You don’t have to drag out your credit cards when you’re on the move, you can just pay for it right out of your Skype Credit. Plus, it’s available at over 1 million hotspots worldwide.** But it gets even better. Throughout the month of August, if you’re a Skype Premium subscriber, you get Skype WiFi for free! If you’re headed to the beach or have a business trip, you can email, check the news, make your family jealous with awesome vacation photos, laugh at LOLcats, and yes, even chat on Skype ...

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