Hands-on with Messaging Skype and Skype Video Preview for Windows 10 Mobile

We've been playing with the unified Messaging Skype Preview app for Windows 10 Mobile that was recently updated. It integrates Skype messaging into the native text messaging app on Windows 10 Mobile. The download also installs a second app called Skype Video Preview that lets users call directly with video. Watch our hands-on video to see it in action.

When you open the Messaging Skype Preview, you see the conversations list right away. It displays the usernames of the contacts you've talked to. You can choose a Skype or typical SMS-style when creating a new message. You can also dynamically switch between Skype and SMS within a single conversation as long as the contact's information is linked together (Skype and personal number). Messaging Skype Preview also asks if you want it to be the default messaging app on Windows 10 Mobile. You can change this default behavior by going to the settings within the app.

From the same download, you also get Skype Video Preview. When you open this app, there's a preview from the front facing camera on top and the call history at the bottom. Tapping one of the names in call history immediately calls that person via video. Tap the Contacts button at the bottom to call other people. We like this app because it's a fast way to initiate a Skype video call.

Download Messaging Skype Preview from the Store if you haven't done it yet and let us know what you think in the comments!

Download Messaging Skype Preview for Windows 10 Mobile (opens in new tab)

Mark Guim is Video Editor at Windows Central. He switched to Windows because the MacBook Pro isn't Pro enough. You can follow him on Twitter at @markguim.

238 Comments
  • So if Skype is the default, can you send and receive over wifi if you dont have cellular coverage? Also will it work the same on a desktop?
  • You can send/receive Skype calls but not SMS over Wi-Fi. yes, it should work the same on desktop, but until it is released...
  • Bummer.
  • You can send/receive skype calls and skype text messages using internet (Wi-Fi/Cellular Data) .. But cannot send SMS over WiFi.. And how is that a bummer?.. What do you expect? Loosers
  • They probably expect it to work like iMessage. 
  • Which it does, right?
  • sms over IP does not work on any existing service PERIOD. Most people using IOS devices just don't understand the difference, but when they can't send or recieve "sms" because their data is screwed, it's because of setting with sms and iMessage. I've done iPhone tech support for a while and this happens all the time
  • IDK about doesn't work on any existing service PERIOD... SMS over Wi-Fi works just fine on my Lumia 925 with TMobile when I turn on Wi-Fi calling.
  • u can do wifi calling on EE
  • Tele2 too
  • If you're saying it doesn't, you might want to check how imessage works. Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • Lol, did you mean losers. It's not looser, if you're gonna be an asshat and insult people at least do it correctly.
  • For now WC app is not showing the option to edit the comments.. That was an accidental mistake.. I'll try to insult others with perfection next time around..okay? :p
  • He might also be saying "Bummer" about the "but until it is released..." part. Don't have to call everyone a "loser."
  • What do you expect? Loosers
    I expect that I can send SMS from computer instead of the phone virtual keyboard. I think it's called "modern". What's with you calling people loosers because of that??
  • So it's... NOT like imessage?
  • imessage will do SMS without cellular?
  • It does chat, over Wifi. I had the impression that this did the same, but maybe not?
  • This chats and video calls over Wifi and Cellular, but SMS only works on cellular.  You can't do SMS over wifi.  At least not that I can see.
  • It does it over WIFI and your missed skype calls shows up in your call history, I'm using it on my 920 with only WIFI and it works perfectly.
  • iMessage itself doesn't send sms
  • It is exactly like iMessageas as its reliant on others who use the same type of device to chat. And will work over wifi. You'd be Skype messaging with other who have Skype.
  • Not exactly, as you can install Skype on pretty much any device, regardless of OEM or OS. The great thing is, you don't have to be tied down to specifically iPhone or iPad. iMessage requires you to have an iPhone or iPad.
  • How do imessages works other than these features?
  • sms over IP does not work on any existing service PERIOD. Most people using IOS devices just don't understand the difference, but when they can't send or recieve "sms" because their data is screwed, it's because of setting with sms and iMessage. I've done iPhone tech support for a while and this happens all the time.
  • Google Voice. Part-way at least, not the whole journey.
  • Ah, that sucks.  So it's not really a Hangouts or messaging competitor then.
  • @Johnny Tremaine Sorry for the bad words :-/ (i was not able to delete it from the WC app, but thankfuly WC admin deleted it )
  • It's exactly the same as hangouts/imessage. The problem is nobody uses Skype so its not going to be all that useful.
  • Well, nobody uses it outside of video calling. So, like iMessage is for iPhone to iPhone chat, this is pretty much Windows phone to Windows phone chat over Wifi only....given the 2% share, not sure how much of a feather in the cap that is.
  • Windows phone to Skype. Not Windows Phone to Windows Phone. I also don't thinkit is fair to say nobody uses Skype either. A lot use it for calls and video, so a lot have installed regardless of daily use. At least other platforms can, unlike iMessage.
  • no, it is not like iMessage. With iMessage, I can receive and send SMS without Cell signals(with wifi) to anyone/any phone
  • SMS only works on cell networks. You're sending iMesseages not SMS.
  • Many businesses and average people use Skype. Especially, if they want to video chat without having to have the same device and it's not just phone to phone.
  • I don't know a single person that uses Skype messaging. Anecdotal, I know, but I don't see many Windows Phone users utilizing Skype messaging either if the most imporant feature imo - Wifi messaging - is missing. Doesn't seem like a competitor to iMessage at all!
  • If you have a Windows account, by default you have messaging. The positive here is that it is cross platform unlike competitors. Granted they need the app, but better than nothing.
  • Actually they don't, you can use Skype through a web interface... Been that way for a year.
  • What do you mean by "WiFi messaging"? It's like using any Skype Client except it's integrated with the normal messaging app. No offense to you directly but a lot of people seem confused about what this actually does, and it's not really that complicated If you don't mean normal skype messages, then I can only think that you mean sending SMS via Skype using your Skype Credit (Which is possible in full Skype Clients), but this isn't something iMessage does either
  • I really tried, but Skype app sucks in WP since 8.0, and it's not so good on Android too (my girlfriend). So we move to telegram wich is the best (I can search even links sent from de desktop program O.o)
  • You obviously don't have many relatives overseas.
  • Be nice if you can type message from skype desktop...and it shows on phone using keyboard on pc..then just sent it in phone.
  • Skype call and messages, right? Not just calls? Right? Obviously not SMS, but messages?
  • Yes.. Skype is a messenger as well.. So it can send text messages.. But SMS is a different thing
  • In countries like the UK and other European ones, text messaging = SMS.
  • SMS is the same as text messaging
  • Skype chat? Yes. Text/SMS via Skype? No.
  • OK, so it is the same as iMessage (with the now exception of sms via pc - we don't know that yet, but we know they want to)
  • If Skype can't do SMS via the app, even on PC it will only be sending and receiving messages within Skype environment. To be able to respond SMS sent over cellular network is apparently what iMessage can do and that's what people want.
  • Can it though? That is what I am trying to understand. If you do not have a cellular connection, can you use iMessage to send a message to a non iMesssage user (to their telephone number - sms)
  • Yes.
  • How a text sent from a pc to phone using an internet connection becomes SMS? .. You can send such a message from Message skype app from pc to phone...( which will be released with W10 T2 update hopefully )
  • Type message. -> Bluetooth to phone. -> phone sends message to contact via cellular radio. Done.
  • Exactly
  • Was really hoping for a Wi-Fi to SMS solution...
  • And name at least one service like that?
  • iMessage?
  • But you still need cellular for actual true SMS via iMessage. unless iMessage to iMessage, right?
  • No. IPhones can SMS via Wi-Fi without cellular, as can Macs and iPods/Pads.
  • I'm pretty sure you're wrong about that....I have a Windows Phone, and my wife has an iPhone - If she takes out her SIM Card she can't send me an SMS - If it's SMS it goes through the mobile network at some point, and there is a charge for that. Skype on the other hand (Full Client).... That CAN send an SMS, but it uses Skype Credit to do that
  • I tested without SIM on my iPhone, I am still able to receive SMS from other phones
  • No it cannot. Remove that sim card from your friends iPhone and he cant send your Android phone a SMS text message.
  • Text Plus for android works that way. It doesn't require a cell connection, only internet.
  • Yes but that uses credit, or some sort of payment plan to do this? Your SMS is submitted to a server and it ultimately is send over a cellular network by Text Plus. The same way that Skype can send an SMS (Using the full clients) and they deduct the cost from your Skype Credit.
  • Google Voice!
  • I'm pretty sure it can send messages via Skype over WiFi.
  • Question: Does iMessage work without a data connection (mobile data or WiFi)?
  • No. Message requires data.
  • As I thought, so it's exactly like this app. They're just instant messengers that are also capable of sending SMS (via cellular).
  • How on earth will any service work without WiFi or data? On iMessage you can send SMS via iMessage. Since iMessage is ONLY on Apple, I don't see what the fuss is about. If you message someone using WiFi only to those that have iPhone, you might as well be sending iMessage. Skype on other hand when connected to data or WiFi can send text messages (NOT SMS) to anyone with Skype app. Question is: If I have iPhone, you have Android. You send me SMS, can I reply to you via iMessage i.e. not incurring any SMS charge from carrier, as long as I am connected to Skype? If yes, Skype can't do that.
  • imessage can send sms to android devices without incurring any sms charge ?..so it is actually using internet right?.. Then how can we call it an sms? .. Do you mean that the sms send from imessage to an android device will be delivered as a normal sms in that device even if its not connected to internet? Then i'm impressed.. If not.. Its just same as skype message
  • WTF are people takning about!!! It's exactly like imessage. Skype messages works on wifi and cellular(data) but the SMS part only work on cellular (of course). IMessage is "just" chat over cellular and wifi... People this retarted should keep to mail... Like on papaaaar!!!
  • All are just making it complicated.. Its just same as imessage but they are not ready to agree.. Confused :-|
  • Ok, that is what I thought too. I didn't want to be the know it all again so kind of posed as questions. :)  What ev.
  • I thought imessage took over your phone number to bounce texts through Apples server so data could be WiFi and still text. You can text through skype that way, to phone numbers but it costs. I was hoping it would be free now.
    Guess tmobile having phones that work on WiFi with no signal is best solution then.
  • Nope, it's tied to the iTunes account registered on the phone.  That's how you can get iMessages on a WiFi only iPad as well.  This functions exactly like iMessage within the Skype infrastructure.
  • Except that imessage automatically detects if the recipient is on a data network and send through that. Here you have to change it manually. Moreover you can use your Mac or whatever to send sms's through your IPhone's sim if the recipient is not an iPhone or if it has no data connection. This is the functionality they need in Skype and it could make Skype flourish as everyone can have Skype on their phone, pc/Mac and taplet, where imessage only works on iDevices.
  • Well, it's similar to iMessage in function, it seems. In practice, it's very niche, as anecdotally, nobody I know uses Skype for chat.  Good luck on getting friends and family to download Skype just to chat with the one Windows phone toting guy.
  • Who doesn't have Skype installed. Every person I know at least has it installed for video. Even iOS users because face time is only iOS to iOS. Agree that nobody uses for messageing. (I do and my family does, but...)
  • It's just the starting.. If MS can market it like message we may see some change.. I think we should Give it some time..
  • *imessage
  • I think they really have to market Skype as a messaging platform and not just stick to video calling. Bring messaging features like stickers, instant sending of photos and video (Facebook Messenger-like) and make Skype registration seamless for Microsoft account users. So when they first open Skype, all their contacts with Skype are paired without needing to manually add them. Automatically paired their mobile number into Skype making it iMessage-like in a nutshell. This is what other messaging apps flourished, easy to setup with only mobile number and fun features that easy to share stuff.
  • https://www.windowscentral.com/e?link=https2F%2Fclick.linksynergy.co...
  • Clearblack+AMOLED+Dark theme is awesome!! The app looks nice btw..
  • Nice. I think the biggest hurdle will be the marketing and the messaging (har-har-har): getting even non-Windows phone users, i.e. Android and iOS users, to associate Skype with messaging and chat, and trying to counter WhatsApp, Hangouts and iMessage, given that Facebook owns WhatsApp and they'll put up a fierce fight to beat back competition from new entrants like Microsoft. Right now, for most folks, Skype is a video calling application.
  • It's a good point. Not sure what their plans are for that one.
  • Yup, given that marketing and messaging isn't a Microsoft strong point. In fact, I can't *ever* remember seeing any kind of ad for Skype, on network TV or major print media, in all the time that Microsoft has owned the application.
  • Or ever, in my case.
  • They had it featured in some shows like Homeland - or I at least presume they had some hand in having them show the Skype Watermark in the bottom of a video conversion in one of the series.
  • I've been using Skype for chatting (and also calling) for close to a decade now, it's no newcomer
  • Now they just need to make it a universal app and allow SMS from PC like iMessage.