Skype for Windows 8 snapshots leaked. The integration of Skype with Windows 8 seems amazing.
When Microsoft splurged 8.5 billion dollars in acquiring Skype last year, needless to say, it churned up the entire world’s curiosity. Last week, we got a peep into what’s in store when pictures of Skype for Windows 8 were spilled on the net by a website.
Going through the pictures shows how Microsoft has done a great job by acquiring Skype. The integration of Skype with Windows 8 seems amazing. Along with the refreshing and chic graphics, this new Skype also compliments the existing features of older versions of Skype with Microsoft’s brilliance. The upgraded design does well in terms of aesthetics as well as user compatibility.
The graphics of the ‘new’ Skype is analogous to the recently renamed “Windows 8” (known as “Metro” formerly) user interface. It resembles a board where you can tile up, well, almost anything. From recently used contacts to your list of favorites. And you can customize the board anytime. From what it appears, users would be able to shuffle the tiles on the home screen and keep your priorities on the screen in front of you. The home screen can be segmented into columns or segments that would hold tiles relevant to that field. One drawback is that the columns may not hold the full list of relevant information at one time. But you can always extend the list to occupy the whole screen.
There is nothing much to comment on the on the working of the new Skype; everything is so highly optimized for the new Windows 8 UI that all features work like a charm. Any tile that you click on is a window that opens up into that world. For instance, if you wish to check your contacts list, you simply have to click on the tile that says “Contacts” and you will be greeted by a tiled wall with each tile representing a profile. The tiles of individual contact would be completely occupied with the picture along with the name written across the bottom.
The standard green dot to indicate who is online has been retained along with a host of other standard symbols. In the revamped Skype, Microsoft has left the core Skype functions unaltered. The basic video calling and chatting features will be applicable. The revamped Skype makes it friendlier to be used in tablets and other portable devices with touch screens.
Skype for Windows 8 may turn out to be quite the thrust Microsoft needed after its embarrassment over “Metro” naming. It has the potential to take popularity of Skype skywards; at least the first peep gives us that impression. However, the focus on graphics and maneuverability seems distinctly ‘Microsoft-ish’. Apart from the aligning of Skype with standard Windows products, there is little new in terms of features in the new Skype. A couple of weeks and the curtain will go up on Skype. Only then will we get to know if the 8.5 billion dollar hype is really worth it.