The rumor swirling around the internet about Microsoft planning to buy Skype has finally been announced. Tuesday morning, Microsoft announced their $8.6 billion acquisition of Skype. It's a purchase that the LA Times calls Microsoft's "largest acquisition ever," saying that it's the "tech world's most massive deal in years."
We've heard the story, but what does it mean for iOS users? Skype is on our iPhones, but will it affect us? Let's take a look at some of the concerns we have over the deal.
1) Skype for iPhone: Now With Even Slower Updates
Skype for iPhone launched around March of 2009. They didn't introduce video calling until the beginning of 2011. Skype is huge, why are the updates taking so long for iOS? We're not saying Skype will be discontinued for iOS, it will probably be around. That said, we doubt there will be much priority put on that version when there is always Windows Phone 7 to work with.
2) Skype for iPad Still MIA
Adding to that, there is no Skype for iPad. We're not saying "No Skype video" we mean no Skype for iPad. Period. The closest you get is the iPhone App scaled up, and it looks horrible. As it is, the App is slow and clunky. When you have been chatting with a friend and you hop on your iPad, it spends a while updating the conversation, loading the past chats you've had. Slow and ugly? No iPad App? We don't think it's changing anytime soon.
3) Skype for Windows Phone 7, Video Chat With WP7 Friends
If there is a positive to take out of this, it's that Skype exists for both iPhone and will no doubt come to Windows Phone 7. Microsoft will ensure that the WP7 version is great. This is nice because users on the iPhone will be able to video conference with their Windows Phone 7 friends. See? There is a bright side.
Doom and Gloom?
No doom and gloom. Right now Skype for iOS is lagging with the updates. While the desktop version is an important part of our workflow, we can't say the same for Skype for iPhone. The iPad has been around for over a year, and there is no version for the tablet. Maybe they will surprise us, but we will remain doubtful for now.