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Skype halts development for Windows Phone 7, sets course for Windows Phone 8

Skype not planning to release further updates for Windows Phone 7.x

The Skype team today has taken to their blog to further outline some of their plans for mobile going forward.  In the article, they highlight how Windows Phone 8 was the first OS to receive mobile HD video calling and feature the new Modern UI. They also mentioned that “the vast majority of our Windows Phone base and usage is on Windows Phone 8”.

Skype, like all companies, has to put their resources where the market is and because of that, they’re announcing that there will be no further development for Windows Phone 7.x legacy devices.


The future of Skype is with Windows Phone 8

That’s the bad news. The good news is they are not pulling the app from the Store and it will remain there for customers to use and download going forward. The “core Skype experiences” including Chat, Voice and Video Calls will remain operational, but don’t expect any more future updates.


Windows Phone 8 overtook 7.x back in June (Source: AdDuplex)

The move by Skype should not be seen as a surprise. Back in June, data from AdDuplex demonstrated how Windows Phone 8 had overtaken Windows Phone 7 usage with a 53% dominance. To put that in perspective, at the time Windows Phone 8 had only been on the market for seven months, while its predecessor had been available for nearly two years.

It’s clear that the momentum is with Windows Phone 8, especially with the dozen Lumia devices that have been released since last November. There is also little argument that the 53% number has only increased since the summer.

Although it's a shame to see Windows Phone 7.x development be brought to a halt, resources need to be spent on the big prize and that’s Windows Phone 8. At least 7.x users won’t be losing anything, as the Skype app will remain available for the near future.

Recently, Skype for Windows Phone 8 received the video messaging feature and we should see more advances for Skype on Windows Phone 8 in the future.

Source: Skype Blog; Thanks, Erik E., for the tip!

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Reader comments

Skype halts development for Windows Phone 7, sets course for Windows Phone 8

168 Comments

Haha I agree completely. What a joke, they didnt update skype on wp7.x for like a year. Since the beginning of skype on wp7 there was only a hand full of updates. Too little to begin with. I just hope they'll do a better job for wp8

Its better to have something than nothing. I would rather have the current skype on my old WP7 than no skype at all.
 

Exactly this is not a surprise.  Wp7 users did not notice any skype development since wp8 in early dev stages.  Tha same exact thing happened in xbox 360, msn live chats where abandoned and skype was supposed to take that place, but they never did.
Ridiculus that having an xbox 360 and a kinect they did not release anything at all.

I'm not surprised because I remembered how many WP.7x devices didn't even have front facing cameras.  Of course more WP8 device owners are using video chat services.

I'm not sure what a FF camera has to do with anything? I use video calling maybe 0.01% of the time, and I'll use my PC or laptop instead. 99% I use Skype for IM and 0.99% for voice calls.

They recently had their app updated for iOS 7 and they don't have time and resources to improve on their home turf!!what a story!!

Because iOS7 is a growing market share, wp7 has no more devices available to sell. Yes it's unfortunate, and I just upgraded, but wp7 is going the way of 6.5. Upgrade as soon as you can, it's so much better.

Which has nothing to do with focusing on Windows Phone in general, is what I'm saying. There's no need to be rude. Your initial comment came across as if you wanted them to continue to increase WP7 market share.

No sir. You just took it that way. I never mentioned WP7. I simply said MARKETSHARE. When saying marketshare, who in the world is talking about WP7??

I'm sorry wp7 guys but I'm hoping you guys upgrade the new Skype is not bad anymore at least. It was at first!

They do, but not this time. Skype on wp8 still lacks many features (some of which are real deal breakers).
• the biggest shortcoming is a very strange one: there are notifications for incoming messages but NONE for missed calls, wtf!?
• you can't receive files (images, docs, etc.)
• messages don't integrate with the built in chat (messenger was)
• last but not least, we are still waiting for full integration into the OS.

Untill they fix these, you can't blame people for complaining about the Skype experience.

Lack is not the same as "suck", like the guy above pretended to sound like.
its obvious Skype will lack features since Wp8 is only 1 year old, same with Win8 (since code is not so different, different but not so different like win8 vs wp7) so you cant expect new platforms to have the same features as old platforms, but they are updating it. and thats the thing, they will be fully featured soon. especially since win8 is going to be the default messaging app from 8.1, so that would give priority to release features and fixes.

No one said that they won't fix it, nor that there were no updates.
I'm all for being supportive and appreciative of the work done on Skype, but likewise no one can or should deny that the whole experience is still lagging behind other major platforms and the situation could use some urgency.

And accordingly, I see their decision to abandon wp7.x and focus on wp8 as forward thinking and a step in the right direction...

so no battery drain running it? file transfers working just fine? notifications all coming through? video messages working without problems?

Skype and the WP 7/8 fiasco are easily the low points of recent MSFT mobile ventures, so yay....?

I agree, windows phone 7 is a distaster, I hope they don't do the same thing to windows phone 8.

ehmm its different, Windows phone 8 while it looks the same as WP7, it doesnt mean its the same anymore. since WP8 got the NT kernel... so no, it wont happen. because Microsoft wont switch from kernel anymore.

What's unclear? They bought Skype to no advantage whatsoever to their native platforms. The hard stop transition between 7 and 8 has been a continuing nightmare.

Because of why, then another why happens. Because another why, another of another why happens.

This is a good move. Allocation of resources is the most important part of keeping ahead or in this case catching up.

I agree, this is actually good news.
I don't think it's advantageous for anyone to continue developing for WP7, in fact, it's actually disadvantageous for WP8.
The WP7 market will only continue to shrink, and within a year or two, I suspect it will be nonexistent.

The 1 person working part time on WP7 is probably very happy to join the other guy at the WP8. There now called a team and in work time there actually 1 person full time time now. Yeah, its a party over there now for sure.
Best regards
Sarcasm

Sorry if I made my self not clear enough. I am speaking of Skype developers, and how many is working on the Skype app for the OS known as WP7 and WP8.

Judging by the pace of development, I'd say your estimates are quite accurate.

Quite infuriating when the only platform that lags behind is Microsoft's latest and greatest. It's a bit like if Toyota hired 300 guys to develop a new engine for Ford and then hired 2 to make one for themselves.

Skype still lacks a proper Windows Phone 8 and Windows 8 integration. I'm sick of having to turn off the notifications every time I'm home because I'd hear them on my phone when on Skype on my computer. Oh, and not forgetting to turn them back on every morning when leaving... And it's worst with the Messenger/Skype fusion. Now, if I appear online inside the messaging app, I'll be seen by my messenger contacts, my facebook contacts (which can be disabled) and my Skype contacts online. But if someone talks to me through Skype and I don't have the notifications turned on, I'll never know until I check the tile. This is a mess...

I really hope Windows 8.1 or even GDR3 actually kicks out the "Skype" app to make it native. They need to erase all "messenger" remains and merge Skype deep into the system.

Have you used Windows 8.1? cause I haven't -_- lol so I am wondering if the Skype integration really is as great as they are promoting.

I've seen some awesome videos detailing the Skype in Windows 8.1 and in order for an "app" to take control of your lockscreen and be active like I saw in the video, then it must be a baked in feature, so perhaps removing that "app" moniker like you wish.

I guess we'll see on Oct. 18 :D very, veryyy excited. Windows 8 turned my 3 years old home PC into a very snappy machine again, especially on startup times :)

The Skype 8.1 experience is really good IMO.  However, without a presense system for Skype, notifications will still be sent to all logged in devices.  That's not going to change anytime soon unfortunately.

I'm using 8.1 and Skype is slightly better than what it is on Windows 8. The notifications works way better, but the snapped view is broken as hell (which will obviously be fixed in the final release. Overhall, I can't say it's that much better than Windows 8, but add weak Windows Phone 8 integration and the duo doesn't work that well... =/

I'm not sure I understand your question.

What I meant is that if you're on you desktop/laptop, chatting on Skype, your phone will *ding* each time you get a new message, as the Skype Windows Phone App will keep pushing notifications. You have to disable them manually not to get them twice...

On the Surface Pro the notifications stops coming in if you leave the app and go in to, say Metro IE or Desktop.

works fine in the background for me, calls, messages; message notifications are a little buggy at times but calls go through for sure

It does, and it will give you a good feeling when that call comes and you get to show the person where in the world you are :)

What it all boils down to is that notifications in general on WP is awful, to say the least. I love my WP and 920, but even I can admit when something just plain sucks. And notifications on WP sucks. I really hope they fix it in WP8.1.

There goes the "support" promisses.
Though I'm not surprised. I feel bad for WP7 owners though. Specially in the US where the majority is bound to carrier contracts.

I wonder how things like this will - or if they will - reflect upon the choices of WP7 owners once the time to change devices arrives.

The people who bought wp7 devices should be at the end of their contracts at this point. They can upgrade and there are many good wp8 devices that are under $100 on contract. The only people who should be still under contract are those who bought the phone when wp8 was announced and the discontinuation was confirmed.

I am not at the end of any contract. I never buy operator subsidized phone, just because it isn't at all much cheaper than buying unlocked phone in the store at full price. And I guess that is how it works for many people outside of U.S.
U.S. market is very specific with their ultra cheap phones "on contract".

Then maybe they should then stop selling and advertising Windows Phone 7.0 devices, such as the Lumia 800 and 900:
http://www.nokia.com/de-de/smartphones-handys/mobiltelefone/lumia900/
Besides that, not all countries allow carrier subsidizing (AFAIK Israel and Singapore). Let's hope that the Windows 7 -> 8 transition will be the last abrupt change. I do think it's a good idea for Skyp to focus on Windows Phone 8 now, although it would be nice if they still added reliability and stability fixed to the WP7 version.

Except those who bought the Lumia 900 or Titan II last year. They still have a year to go.
Smartphone beta test indeed.

As others have said, many people bought WP7 devices last year. Some of them, actually, even bought them THIS year. In many European countries you still have WP7 devices being promoted and on sale.
Sure, we don't do those "contracts" here in Europe, we normally pay the full price and are free to change phones as soon as we want (I bought a L920 when my L800 was just 1 year old). However, average consumer expects support for the devices they buy, specially when they have 2 years of warranty by Law. If you tell these people "sorry, we've already discontinued that phone and we won't support it anymore" when their phone isn't 2 years old, I think it's to be expected for people to be frustrated.
Specially after the fiasco that was the WP7.8/WP8 thing (I still don't know if MS or Nokia are to blame for the first generation of Lumias being released with a dead OS)

I can understand the frustrations of WP7 users who bought those devices within the last year... but they only have themselves to blame. Everyone should do a little research before buying a new phone, and if they had done that, they would have known about WP8.

there are many countries where carrier subsidies are not available and ppl buy phones at full unsubsidized prices so dont expect ppl to chnge phones every year or 2, beside if everyone does get blamed by you and like minded, then probably ppl will stop buying WPs n wont give a chance to a budding platform which is still in a nascent stage.

Ok hopefully now they can fix their damn group messaging and messaging in general.  Also make the UI easy to navigate and use. 

It's easy to see why Skype didn't get much traffic from WP7. That app is utterly broken.
But it's not surprising that the halt development for it. The last time they updated it was in July 2012 with no new features, just bug fixes. And they stopped after version 1.3.
Microsoft could have handled the whole WP7 fiasco way better. But it's a really small market so I can't hold it against them.
I'm still using WP7 on my Lumia and my upgrade is still some months away but it's still working great for me and most things that I use are available for it so I'm not super mad.
I think at this point I'll just skip WP8 and get the first generation of 8.1 available which should be incredible.

I went from WM6.5 to WP8 Portico (GDR1)

I completely skipped all Windows Phone 7 family: (7.0 / 7.5 / 7.8)

People with WP7.8 should upgrade right to WP8.1 and completely skip Windows Phone 8 family (GDR1 / GDR2 / GDR3)

"The future of Skype is with Windows Phone 8"
wHAT?? Their future is on iOS and Android. Skype on my Lumia 822 is just barely acceptable.

They also mentioned that “the vast majority of our Windows Phone base and usage is on Windows Phone 8”.

Well, somebody confuses cause and its effect. There would be more Skype usage on WP7 if the application would have been really updated and improved there.

 

I have quietly moved on from WP7.x and am now fully enjoying WP8.x ...
Though I was always annoyed as a 7.x user reading the lack of support :-\

Phone 7 is dead. I am actually with MS on this one. I own a phone 7 device and a phone 8 device. With each passing day I find less and less use for the phone 7 device.

Still waiting for picture sharing and animated emoticons. Voice messages would be nice to like whatsapp. Or maybe if the video messages didn't take an hour to download...

Well this was not a surprise. WP 8 is obviously where they should spend their time and money. But I really wanna know what 7.9 or the next update after 7.8 will have. Otherwise im gonna start working on how to install XDA version of 7.8. It offers way more functionality then the current 7.8. And I can't upgrade coz my HTC Radar is just a year old. :/

Agreed... This was an eventuality. I recall Nokia slides bring posted months ago about a possible post 7.8 update. With decisions like this, it seems less likely to happen.

I would love to know but.. Damn I really need Bluetooth share.. People judge WP from basic stuff like this. I tell my friends that my radar has no Bluetooth share and they will be like android phones are better *-*

Good Choice Microsoft.
WP8.1 and WP9 need all the resources they can get. To stop mucking around with dead OSs is a good choice.

So far, Microsoft has only managed the "Shut Up" part of their "Shut up and Ship" mantra.

The WP8 support is still a joke. Skype should be totally integrated in and should work no differently than phone calls - not an independent app.

WP7 has made it's peak and now MS has to focus on WP8 where it can start making a dent in the phone market. C'mon legacy users, jump on board already!

I'm still a very active user of windows 7.8 on my htc Titan 1 unsubsidized phone. The phone works fine and still very useful, even skype.

Its kinda like they are officially annoucing wp7 was failure and beta test for wp8. Hope wp8 is difftent.

Ehhhh... I can't even even login on the WP7 version because my Skype account was created on Windows 8 with my Microsoft account and the WP7 doesn't allow to login using the Microsoft account. I was hoping they would at least fix that...

There is a trick to logging in or adding people who have a MS account as a normal skype user.  I believe the trick is to convert your MS account email to a domain:username format.
 
For example:
first.last@live.com => live:first.last
coolguy23@outlook.com => outlook:coolguy23
 
When I log in to skype.com and click Profile I see my name as "live:username" and that has worked for me when asking friends to add me as a Skype contact.
Let me know if that works for you.  I agree, the integration is still poor in many ways for MS accounts.  It really needs to be fixed.

Legacy support is what makes Microsoft so great :| I guess that this is a new Microsoft.
 

The Skype app on WP7 is a piece of shit, no wonder they don't register much traffic on that terrible app.

They will stop supporting windows Phone 8 in future....******** u ms,you have become a dumb company without any creativity,you dnt knw there is a world outside US f*****u ms

This is why I am not upgrading to WP 8. I will continue to use WP 7 until my phone gives up. Maybe until then WP will shape up more.

That makes no sense.
Do you expect a Skype to support WP7 forever? Should they still be supporting Windows Mobile 5?
I think this is actually good, they will focus resources on the present/future rather than splitting those resources.
If an app dropping support for WP7 upsets you, be prepared because this is about to happen more and more.

But its just been 8 months since wp8 is released. And there are still 47% users on wp7 platform. You just can not say that. But even you have a point.

But it's also been about 15 months since WP8 was announced, anyone who bought WP7 before then should be looking for a new phone soon... anyone who bought a WP7 since then should have done their homework.
Like the article says, WP7 users won't be losing anything, they just int he gaining anything.
I suspect that Skype will be more heavily integrated into 8.1, integration and features that may not be possible for WP7.

WP8 was released October 29, 2012, where does this make 15 months.
 MS cheated customers by keeping mum about WP7.5 being upgraded, n whats with the homework thing u keep on suggesting, this aint gonna help the platform, ur talk reminds me of dumb isheep apple fanboys I expect more mature talk to WP users dont be dumb fanboys pls.
As for skype integration it was said WP will have it from start but it was not the case n u keep on dreaming abt that in WP8.1 and u might still not get it and then u wait for WP9. and I guess u'll then blame wp8 users for not doing "homework" ;)

He said 15 months since announced, not released. Be lucky you're on WP. Some phones give up on previous models within a year *cough* IOS*cough*

what??? are you high??
WP 8 was released in Oct 12, that is just 1 year back and they have stopeed supporting WP7? 
 
And ios7 is compatible for iPhone  4 whch was released in early 2011 .. Apple is the foremost among all OS'es when it comes to providing support / software upgrades to their legacy devices, then comes android.. and in the end it is WP.. which has a pathetic track record of providing updates...

Bought a Samsung Galaxy S Duos in India, for 18,000₹, about a year ago,and still on ICS.......no jellybean...even the Nokia Lumia 510 got 7.8 update...as usual a poor performance by Samsung :|

Lucky? ask ppl who bought unlocked WP7.5 devices at premium prices just to be ditched, & ios7 is still being given to iphone4 users

So basically Microsoft is not going to support their own phone OS, one that they were selling less than year ago, because the user base is too small to worry about? Priceless.

What kinda sucks, wp8 was released less than a year after than certain high profile wp7.x phones (lumia 900 and titan 2), now those who bought that under contract are still stuck until at least april 2014... My employer renegotiated terms with att whcih game us a slightly better discount, but no more early upgrades. So I am stuck until June unless I want to but at full MSRP.

The future is WP8........or 9.........or, anyway, moving forward is a part of life, my mam got the umbilical cord cut years ago and I've fed myself ever since :P

Why bother announcing this other than rubbing it in?  I'm still on WP7 (Focus S).  The lack of upgrades for an OS that doesn't work well with Skype is not news.

The only problem I have with the Skype app is that it doesn't list people in in your contacts that sign in with their Windows Live ID.

I need to rethink into buying a Microsoft product... Windows 8 is pain to use and my WP 7 i bought is out dated with no support. I bought a WP 8 will i lost support once more in year?

The point is not about WP7, it is about the Skype development team...
 
Microsoft needs to clean out the Skype teams. There are too many people left that do not like Microsoft and have dug their heels in to hurt Microsoft.
 
Here is what Skype has failed to do:
 
1) WP7 client doesn't support MS Account login.  This is not a minor missing feature, it makes the client unusage for the majority of MS customers that migrated from Messenger and don't have an older Skype Login.
2) Skype MS Account integration doesn't give users any access to the 'assigned' Skype Account that is created.  The username001 account created from the MS Acccount cannot be managed.
3) Skype dropped their XB360 App developement. (Why?)
4) Skype hasn't provided the basic messenger features they promised would be available when messenger was discussed to be replaced.
5) WP8 gave a new model for VOIP integration, yet Skype doesn't fully use these features.
6) WP8 Skype lacks major features other platforms have and continue to get updates.  (Getting video messaging was like pulling teeth.)
 
Microsoft has big problem with the Skype developers. There are too many left over from the pre-Microsoft days that HATE Microsoft and have worked to nail and hinder the Microsoft platform support.  They need to step in and exclusively put these people on other platform development or fire them.
 
 

The original press release was meant to say "Skype halts development for windows phone" but then author accidentally hit '7'.

It's the right thing to do. Anyone on WP8 knows the limitations that 7 has (unlike its desktop counterpart, some argue). Trust me when I say an upgrade to WP8 is worth your time and money, and MSFT sees this already.

I don't really get the tone of this article. WP7 users should be thankful because "the good news is they are not pulling the app from the Store". That's the good news? That owners of a phone made by Windows will be able to continue using the crappiest Skype app around (also owned by Windows)? It seems to me that this is just obvious. Pulling the app from the store would not have made any sense. Tell this to the people that spent hundreds of dollars on a shiny, useless, Lumia 800 or whatever. 

Indeed. This is hardly anything surprising, as WPcentral always attempts to make bad WP-related news sound great in some fashion. With WP7 users unable to stay online and even sign in to that bloody app with their MS IDs it's inexcusable really to leave them at that. And those users still make up for almost half of the installed WP user base!
So, we should really be thankful for
- being alive
- being allowed by MS to use our WP7 handets even if they're practically abandoned and unsupported
- having contributed to beta testing windows phone for a fee (i.e. the great phones we paid for)

+800.
they have justified, google instagram and everyother company who has actively refused to put resources for app development for WP

All you Windows Phone 7.8 users upgrade to Windows Phone 8.1 in 2014 as all us WP8 (GDR3) users update to WP8.1 in 2014!

LG, Sony, are back with WP8.1 @WMC 2014

Microsoft likes to kill their own products... That would be OK if no one was using it. I feel bad for the people who are still using discontinued products, but this should not be as hurtful as killing Zune for the WP8 users. All those WP enthusiast who were first to build the base for WP platform are now in transition from 7.8 phones to the latest ones, and this is such a pain as far as transferring music is concerned. It is impossible to transfer playlists with the Zune DRM protected files. How in the World Microsoft is planning to become a "new Apple" in a few years if they simply neglect their customers?