After the unfortunate news of the closure of Skype’s London offices, rumors of Microsoft working on the development of a new client that will be the norm for the company’s VoIP service going forward. This project, which has been codenamed ‘Skype for Life‘ will be aimed towards streamlining the company’s video messaging capabilities.
There are currently an excessively large number of Skype clients available on the market, but this entirely new client will represent Microsoft’s strategy change towards video calling. It will be a cross-platform application which will run not only on Windows but also on Linux, Mac, iOS, and even Android. It will bring all current versions of the Skype app under one single umbrella.
Detailing the same and talking about the clutter of Skype apps, publication ArsTechnica writes:
Currently, the company has the traditional Windows desktop app; the new Universal Windows Platform app for Windows 10, Windows 10 Mobile, Xbox, and Skype; the Skype Web client; and a Web-based standalone app for Linux (which apparently has internal builds that run on Windows, too). Skype also has mobile apps for iOS and Android in addition to a macOS client.
Due to this strategy change, Microsoft is putting all other Skype projects on maintenance mode and will pick them up later. According to sources, this is one of the key reasons for shutting down the London headquarters and laying off hundred of staff personnel — all redundant to this new strategy. The company now instead of making major Skype-related decision in Europe, is undertaking them right at Redmond.
The new applications focusing on the strategy change are currently being developed at the company headquarters in Redmond. This suite of streamlined VoIP apps includes Skype for Business(also its recently introduced free version called Skype Meetings), Skype Teams — the slack competitor that Microsoft is working aggressively on, and the aforentioned ‘Skype for Life’ that will club the key functionalities from the hoard of Skype clients.
Skype was originally founded in 2003 by Niklas Zennström and Janus Friis. It setup a team in its offices in London, but was later acquired by Microsoft for a whopping $8.5 billion in 2011.