Microsoft seems to be taking its Skype acquisition and integrating it further into the arsenal of products and services the company offers - namely Messenger (or Windows Live Messenger). An article has been published on the Skype blog detailing what's on the horizon for Messenger users who now have the opportunity to connect to their Microsoft Account within the Skype client.
The Messenger user base is huge. Microsoft owns the IM market and with its Skype purchase, the company is turning into a communications giant. So what's being included in Skype? Well, one can activate video calls and initiate messenger chats already, all that happens now is all Messenger contacts are synchronised down through the Skype client as well.
We'll soon see contacts stored on Microsoft Accounts being used simultaneously by multiple services.
The Skype team has already started moving everything across with the release of Skype version 6 for both Mac and Windows. This release enables logging into Microsoft Accounts, which allows users to access Messenger contacts and carry on as if they were utilising Windows Messenger. Messenger itself is stated to be retiring in the first quarter of 2013 - except for mainland China.
Highlighted features of Skype for those who are looking to upgrade from Messenger:
- Broader device support for all platforms, including iPad and Android tablets
- Instant messaging, video calling, and calling landlines and mobiles all in one place
- Sharing screens
- Video calling on mobile phones
- Video calling with Facebook friends
- Group video calling
The Skype client for Windows 8 and Windows Phone 8 will boast similar functionality and connectivity that will keep all consumers in touch with one another. We're unsure what's going to happen to the Messenger app for Windows Phone and Windows 8, but we assume it'll remain for Facebook Chat and more.
Be sure to head on over to the Skype Support forum should you need to enter into discussion about the planned changes, as well as tweeting out with the hashtag #SkypeWLM.