Menu
Microsoft updates Skype for Windows, Mac with new chat interface

Microsoft updates Skype for Windows, Mac with new chat interface

Microsoft's Skype app has received a facelift that makes it look more like Windows Phone--which may or not be a good thing.

Chatting in Skype for Windows and the Mac now looks more like the Windows Phone version, whether you like it or not.

Microsoft's Skype announced version 7.0 for the Mac together with a new preview version for the Windows desktop. Both include a number of potentially attractive productivity improvements, including the ability to chat and talk simultaneously in the new Mac version. But there's still an awful lot of white space, which may annoy some.

"For the last year we've dedicated a lot of time to refresh the chat experience in Skype. We've brought more improvements to the desktop," Tom Huang, a Skype exec, wrote in a blog post.

Why this matters: What's good for the goose isn't necessarily good for the gander. On a phone, scrolling is part of the experience. On a PC, it's more annoying. The new chat UI could use some tightening up, especially if spread out across a large, high-resolution monitor, to cut out some of that white space. But while Skype hasn't come out and said it, we suspect the new Skype app (at least on Windows) is intended to be (eventually) snapped inside one of the four corner windows that Windows 10 allows. In that scenario, the UI should (hopefully) tighten up and conserve space more efficiently.

Some useful additions

In general, the new chat UI looks nice, with round avatars representing your friends. Photos can easily be dropped into a chat session, as can documents. Both are useful features when talking back and forth with a colleague or friend, although the layout isn't quite ideal--they sort of dominate the conversation. Microsoft touts this increased spacing as a benefit, although it may prove a bit annoying to scroll back through a long chat.

When chat is tucked into a narrow window, however, it seems to work well. Skype for Mac 7.0 adds the ability to text-chat and video-chat in side-by-side windows, sharing photos and documents alongside the live commentary that you and your friends can provide. And Microsoft also promised that the free group video calls that the company previously announced will work better than ever.

Follow Us

Join the New Zealand Reseller News newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags video softwaretelecommunicationskypeMicrosoftvoip

Slideshows

Top 50 defining moments of the New Zealand channel in 2016

Top 50 defining moments of the New Zealand channel in 2016

Reseller News looks back on a tumultuous 12 months for the New Zealand channel, assessing the fallout from a year of sizeable industry change. Whether it be local or global mergers and acquisitions, distribution deals or job changes, the channel that started the year differs somewhat to the one set to finish it - Reseller News assesses the key moments that made 2016.​

Top 50 defining moments of the New Zealand channel in 2016
​Hewlett Packard Enterprise honours high achieving NZ channel

​Hewlett Packard Enterprise honours high achieving NZ channel

Hewlett Packard Enterprise honoured its top performing Kiwi partners at the second running of its HPE Partner Awards in New Zealand, held at a glitzy ceremony in Auckland. Recognising excellence across eight categories - from distributors to resellers - the tech giant celebrated its first year as a standalone company, following its official split from HP in 2015.

​Hewlett Packard Enterprise honours high achieving NZ channel
Nutanix treats channel partners to Christmas cruise

Nutanix treats channel partners to Christmas cruise

Nutanix recently took to the seas for a Christmas Cruise around Sydney Harbour with its Australia and New Zealand staff, customers and partners to celebrate a stellar year for the vendor. With the sun out, they were all smiles and mingled over drinks and food.

Nutanix treats channel partners to Christmas cruise
Show Comments