While Skype on Windows Phone 8 still falls short of the more seamless experience on Android, the chaps at Microsoft and Skype are at least working their tails off to improve the Windows Phone experience. Such is the case with the steady stream of monthly updates to the popular VOIP service, with the last occurring on July 9th.
Version 126.96.36.199 should be going live in the Store right now for users, meaning if you follow the link below you can force update the app instead of waiting 12 hours for your Store tile to refresh. More interestingly, Skype actually included a changelog with the update and it’s more than the usual “bug fixes”.
Version 188.8.131.52 brings the following new experience to Windows Phone:
- It’s now even easier to find who you’re looking for, simply filter your People list to only show Skype contacts.
- See even more favorite contacts at a glance with the new and improved layout.
- General fixes and speed improvements.
The Skype blog goes on to describe those changes in more detail, noting:
- People List Filter – We received feedback from users that they’d like to see Windows Phone contacts and Skype contacts split out in the Skype People List. So, in 2.9 we’ve added a filter so you can see either all your contacts, just Skype contacts, or only available contacts.
- Home Screen – The Skype home screen has been improved so that users can now pivot through app functions. The Favorite Contact tiles are now smaller, fitting three across on the screen so it is faster for you to contact the people you care about most.
Certainly the filter and new layout are the most interesting of the bunch. Indeed we’ve always been mixed on the old layout because while it was bright and bold, it was also a bit cramped at times. Regarding “general fixes and speed improvements”, we’ll never turn those down as the lag to getting into Skype has always been a downer on Windows Phone. Unfortunately, Video Messages are still missing.
You can pick up Skype for Windows Phone 8 version 2.9.0129 here in the Store, scan the QR code below or swipe right in our app. Are things better? Let us know in comments.