Microsoft reverses course, will launch Skype UWP app for Windows 10 PC and Mobile

In a change of strategy, Microsoft will release a Skype app for the Universal Windows Platform after all. The company says that the app will be released first for Windows 10 on PCs and tablets, followed by a Windows 10 Mobile version.

Microsoft previously announced that a UWP version of Skype would not be released. Instead, the company decided to integrate Skype features into its Windows 10 Video and Messaging apps. A "preview" of that experience was released for Windows 10 on PCs in November.

Microsoft said it has been taking feedback from Windows 10 users since then (opens in new tab):

But what we also learned from this feedback is that as the screen size gets bigger—large tablets, 2 in 1s and PCs for example— and you begin to use the apps, expectations shift and people want to limit app clutter. And like that, you once again want an app that lets you do anything you want within the comfort of one window. This is why we are introducing the Skype Universal Windows Platform app. We wanted to learn from integration and improve on the current Skype app with new experiences. We've simplified the look and feel by removing duplicative and unnecessary menus to prevent confusion between them. The global menus are now in a new, single Settings menu, and you'll see contextual menus appear in upcoming releases.

Members of the Windows Insider program will get the first chance to check out the Skype UWP app for Windows 10 on PCs and tablets in the coming weeks. The first version will include these features:

  • Sign in with your Microsoft Account and link a Skype ID
  • Show and change your availability
  • See a list of your existing Skype contacts
  • Initiate a chat with anyone in your contact list
  • See that the other person is typing
  • Logout
  • Make one-to-one voice and video calls and send messages
  • Personalize your experience with emoticons and Mojis
  • Send photos
  • See notifications for incoming calls and messages outside of the app
  • Participate in existing group chats

Future versions will add more features:

  • Start a chat with anyone using Skype or not using Skype
  • Create a group and send group messages
  • Group voice and video calling
  • Share your screen, files and video messages
  • Manage notifications from individual chats
  • And much more…

The current version of Skype can still be used on Windows 10 PCs, but Microsoft does plan to "streamline all Skype for Windows 10 experiences into the Skype Universal Windows Platform app" over time in various stages.

Again, the Windows 10 Mobile version of the Skype UWP will be launched at a later date.

John Callaham
  • YES !  Really need an update to this old skype app for W10(M). Now a fully new UWP app is even better
  • The current one all of a sudden stopped receiving group voice calls n also unable to initiate group voice calls. 2 weeks back.
  • Meanwhile they drop support for w/wp8.1 360
  • Not getting any notifications on the current phone apps.  Skype, Messenger (with Skype) etc.  I wonder if this UWP one will finally receive messages when on Wi-Fi.
  • Same thing, don't get notifications in any of the apps on my phone. Posted from Windows Central for Windows 10
  • remove the tile and re-add it to get notifications
  • Yes no yes no yes no
  • But don't you think it's good that they do question their decisions and are flexible enough to change according to what people want? I think it's good
  • Yes but in a few months they might change and cancel it again
  • Microsoft just can't decide one thing and improve on it. They keep going back to square one. Windows 8 - messaging + people. then replaced with Skype + People.
    Windows 10 - messaging + skype video + people. now replacing with people + skype?? In the last 5 years, Microsoft hasn't been doing anything and are feeling antsy about this. They should just call it quits and accept that other companies can do a better job.
  • Honestly... You have a point. This back and forth doesn't inspire much confidence. And everything of theirs takes soooo long to get done.
  • Yeah but remember a lot of the choices they make is a result of user feedback. You can't blame Microsoft for a full 100% on this.
  • I love the skype that's built into my messages app. I hope they don't change it..
    But ability to clip videos would be good Sent from Lumia 950
  • For sure, I do love it too. But if they build the UWP, then what is the point in integrating Skype into messaging app. I really don't get it. Posted from Windows Central for Windows 10
  • let's hope they don't fragment it - like having People / Messaging / Skype Video / Skype. We'll have like 4 apps that pretty much do the same thing and would be pointless :(
  • I just found it handy that way. I didn't need to open another app
    .And it give Lumia something android and ios doesn't have. .
    To be honest I'd probably just use bbm if I have to open another app Sent from Lumia 950
  • The skype built-in is the uniqueness for W10M, that's why I don't want to switch to other platforms. Posted from Windows Central for Windows 10
  • I strongly agree. Be stupid to take it away . They should make it best experience of all
  • They should integrate the Skype into messages like how Facebook integrates with the people apps.
  • I really much prefer a UWA, although I agree that they should keep the integration in the messaging and people apps since some people prefer it.
  • There's a possibility they may offer the integrated app for larger screens only.
  • Totally awesome
  • They need to fix it. On Mobile, if you receive Skype messages via Messaging app, they will not be read aloud over bluetooth. It's very frustrating for someone who drives a lot.
  • Hoping that too.
  • Complaining here won't help -- go to the Feedback Hub and submit feedback to Microsoft directly! Tell them we want a Messaging hub that does everything - SMS/MMS/RCS text messages from desktop, Skype messaging, GroupMe group chats, Xbox app conversations, etc. and more, all within the universal Windows 10 Messaging app!
  • did it, but one Voice want be enough
  • Finally they realize about UWP app for Skype :/ so long MS
  • Nice, I'm open for all of the UWP apps Posted on Lumia 930 with
    Windows 10 Mobile
  • It wouldn't be needed if the current Messaging and Skype video apps were reliable. But kudos for the change. The desktop Skype app is awful.
  • Nah. I have one app for contacts, one app for messages, one app for video calls and one app for calls... it's a mess!
  • This is acceptable imo. The problem is none of these apps works properly when it comes to Skype integration. MSFT should try and fix it so people don't rely necessarily on the standalone app.
  • True. Last week, I couldn't get Skype video to work, so I used the Skype for desktop which is painfully slow. No matter how many apps we have for Skype services, they should at least work.
  • I can't seem to delete calls from the Skype video history on my PC (they're gone on the desktop app and on my phone, but I did a hard reset a while ago). My messages aren't sent very often. So yeah MSFT has a lot to fix. I just hope they keep the integration, fixing these issues instead of going away with it (look at the new WC post).
  • I can't chat with Skype for business users in the Messaging app... but I can in the desktop and separate mobile app.  So annoying.
  • Thank goodness. Was trying to call a friend on her cell using skype, but could not find how to do it via the new apps. Video does video, messaging does message, so had to go back to old slow skype app.The current situation is in a horrific mess. Apart from the Skype integration in messaging, the video app should be shelved. No way to see whose online, contacts messed up, and to sum it all, one app is better than giving 3 options to do one same thing. Posted from Windows Central for Windows 10
  • I go to the persons profile and tell it to call from there.
  • That's the issue here. If I go to people and select that contact, I select the phone number and it initiates a voice call via my carrier, whereas I want it to go through skype's dialer. (Calling US phones via skype is free from India so). Also my friend has two skype contacts, one personal and one office. But skype shows both as skype video, no way to determine which one to select unless you make a call and then see the ID you are dialling. Posted from Windows Central for Windows 10
  • How many different versions of Skype will it be wtf
  • I agree. We have the program, the desktop app the messaging interaction
    And now the uwp app? I mean wtf
    Posted from Windows Central for Windows 10
  • It's pretty clear to me that MS needs to reign in the Skype people. There's some lack of togetherness there, which leads to so many problems surrounding Skype. From the terrible quality of Skype on Windows to the laughable integration, which I think is probably because the Skype group won't play nice, instead continuing to act like a separate company. Time for that to end if they want to make Skype a first-party feature.
  • just watch Microsoft will eventually have 10 different skype apps and we'll all be screwed Microsoft's thinking: if we make 10 skype apps that do the same thing, then there will be more apps, so people will buy W10M because we filled the "app gap"
  • Awesome!
  • Lets hope they get it right on mobile. I've always had terrible mobile experience with all Skype apps on Windows Phones. Surprisingly I actually like the messages integration now it has attachment support, it's been the best mobile experience for me so far so I really hope they don't mess it up. Very interested to replace the desktop app with UWP though, just a bit cautious on the mobile front.
  • Does the new messaging interactive way work good for you? For me not at all Posted from Windows Central for Windows 10
  • I'd like to keep the Skype integration with Messaging but this is great news. The Windows Central Universal Application for Windows 10 Mobile on a Nokia Lumia 830
  • Why couldn't they just fix the current one?  They just don't know where to point themselves at Microsoft.  I want SMS integration on my desktop.  I already have a proper full blown Skype app.
  • ^This
  • And also fix Messaging on Mobile so that messages received via Skype are read aloud over Bluetooth. This is what makes the app really worthless right now.
  • +1
  • Left right up down inside outside upside down.. make up your mind on your strategy Microsoft. Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • What strategy? Thought the "throw ideas at the wall and see what sticks" method was offically discounted as a legitimate business strategy..... :)
  • How about Skype for Desktop? I'm running Windows 7 and it's terrible, truly :(
  • Hopefully they'll focus on improving the Windows 10 apps instead.
  • Another question here is when will Bluetooth functionality around Skype messages in the messaging app be treated as SMS. It drives me nuts that my Skype messages in the messaging app don't come through on my car (Microsoft Sync) or Microsoft Band.   (xpost)
  • This is the big one for me. I drive a huge amount for work, and that is where Windows 10 Mobile really shows how weak a product it is. There is virtually no functionality for those of us who spend a lot of time in the car. This fix, along with MirrorLink would radically change the equation.
  • side topic: Microsoft should get a form of Windows 10 onto vehicles similar to Android Auto ​@MSFT @Daniel_Rubino @breaker119
  • Yup, and base it on Continuum. In fact they already talked about this at CES. They should expand on that concept. Build something into Miracast that would allow the second screen to identify as a car and then show a special dashboard tailored for cars.
  • But this new app wont have sms integration right? Why not just build one Skype UWP app that can handle sms also? Posted from Windows Central for Windows 10
  • This ^ or Rollback the decision. I prefer the messaging app. Why not integrate those features into messaging?
  • Duh the skype name is better than video app
  • A very good news!!! ☺ Posted from Lumia 950 via WindowsCentral App.
    Madrid ES.
  • Great work Microsoft Skype should be kept separate from other apps the next thing they should work on is its memory usage probably it's just me but I think Skype is the most memory drainer app on windows phone, if I am using Skype I have closed every other app for it not to crash and I am rocking a powerful device the Samsung ativ se
  • No MS. Bad MS. Skype integrated with messaging was brilliant...
  • This is true, but the app definately had ways to go and MS didn't seem to want to invest into it.  It's been out for quite a while and we still don't even have the option to switch cameras
  • I want to avoid app clutter as well. Let me uninstall system junk I don't use, like the podcast and voice recorder apps.
  • Who's in charge of Skype at Microsoft? It seems to me this division is one big freakin' mess with no real direction.
  • Right. It's been like that since MS acquired Skype and its leader. MS apparently let the guy run the show freely and the results have been absolutely terrible with endless change of SW direction. IMO he single handlely ruined the #1 good experience people liked about WP that is seamless and flawless communication tool. Not to mention horribly slow Skype apps with missing features in the past, my #1 problem with W10M right now is Skype message count not being cleared on my phone when I read them on PC. So much for glance-and-go every time I look at my phone I have to wonder if the stale unread message count includes any new message or not, or launch the app and clear the count manually. What a PITA.
  • And by the time they finish this it will be 2017...... Soon (TM)
  • Very confused company
  • lol wut??? Please explain how this will fit in the current messaging framework on win10?
  • But, but, but integration in messaging app is the only reason why I even use skype. :(
  • I think I'm currently in the minority, but I like how skype is now. It just needed sending photos and other attachments function, which are there already in the new redstone builds. I liked how Skype was integrated in the messaging app, and the people app on mobile, so skype was a part of the system, deeply integrated, not just a separate app. But anyway, time will tell what this will bring. Posted from Windows Central for Windows 10, on HP 250 G1 notebook
  • It also needed to work. For many people, the Messaging app on Windows desktop simply broke after a while. There's no explanation, and no fix other than to reinstall Windows completely. It worked mediocre one day, then the next messages won't sent. Useless. Check the MS support forums for this problem, you'll see.
  • I'm with you, I like the way it is now.
  • 干的漂亮! ——来自撸妹640 for Windows 10.
  • Pretty retarded, company.... And as always... "The company says that the app will be released first for Windows 10 on PCs and tablets, followed by a Windows 10 Mobile version." Coming Soon ™ to Windows Mobile....but don't bother Skype experience is way better on my LG G3 than this Lumia 1520....
  • Amazing news! It's great to see that things aren't written in stone and they listen to what users want.
  • Do whatever, just remove all sort of integrations and apps other than this app. I don't want to see the same data in four different places with bad syncing. The Microsoft Messaging is a pain and has added random unknown contacts to my contact list and it is really impossible to delete those.
  • haha had the same, looking at my skype contact list wondering who these people are :D
  • UWP apps are proving to be the truth
  • Really? the only reason for such dreadful feedback was that the built in app never works how it should and lacks almost every feature. Make it right and it will be all good. I would actually love having skype integrated but only if it works.
  • Skype must be as fast as whats app, with delivery and read report for messages. The integration,with messaging app must not be abandoned.
  • I dunno. I was really starting to get used to having texting and Skype integrated into the same app.
  • But they didn't say anything about the built in Skype. I hope that they don't remove it.
  • Huh, ok then! Great news they're building a proper UWP app for Skype, though it does feel like perhaps it's taken a while to cajole the Skype team into building one, with the curfuffle we've had with them ditching the Windows 8 app and then building the features into the messaging apps... ​Microsoft really needs to just fire the people who run Skype as they've made nothing but a mess of the service (and Messenger) for years now while better messaging apps have come along and taken over. Bring it in house and align it with Microsoft's overall aims and just get them moving so they're even part of the conversation. Literally everyone I know uses WhatsApp and/or Facebook Messenger now, Skype just isn't really a thing.  
  • Maybe the UWP app will have a damn landscape keyboard. Whoever made the decision to leave that out of the WP8.1 app was a damn fool, so that honestly could be anyone in the Skype group. I don't think those people have a clue what they're doing.
  • Jesus, can't MS stick to anything they say?
  • I hope we don't lose the integration... I hate to keep going in and out of apps! It's crazy!! Plus we won't have any messenger integration on our own. Let the app be optional... Do not take away the integration.... Posted from Windows Central for Windows 10
    Using My Beastly 1520
  • Yey! It was a shame when they removed the metro app, it was beautiful and functional
  • They seem very confused with the direction they want to take with skype...i mean what do they want people to use...integrated skype or standalone app? And don't tell me choices for different kinda people...we want a steady experience, not a work in progress that has always frustrated for nearly 5 years...!
  • Sweet! Sounds like it might be officially released with Redstone in June then?
  • Yes! Thank you Microsoft! I tried to do a Skype call with my boss a few weeks ago with the Skype Video app. Audio wouldn't work, dropped a couple of times, and every time I reverted to text to try to explain and solve the problems, I had to go into a different app. She called me on the phone instead, then I downloaded the old desktop version afterward to avoid that happening again. Edit: After reading other comments, I see the argument that it would have been better to keep integrated, but just to actually fix it instead of splitting off again. I would be happy with that option, too, as long as I can type a Skype message into the same window as the Skype video call.
  • Just leave the thing integrated... Why become app centric when as a whole we don't have apps...? It's basically the only cool thing we have to brag about besides continuum, and live tiles. Geesh!!!! And there are too many low end phones in the insiders program. This causes a lot of bad experiences which in turn gives bad feedback and we all suffer from this. Hate this! What's next? I hope they aren't stupid enough to rely on just the app!!! Posted from Windows Central for Windows 10
    Using My Beastly 1520
  • Apple has the same thing with iMessage and FaceTime. Google has it with Hangouts (sort of). Microsoft was attempting to use the same approach. What they will most likely do is get rid of the app for video calls and replace it with the Skype UWP app. I am betting they will keep the integration in messaging, but separate regular phone calls from Skype calls. Skype chat will be in the Skype app as well. Not much different than being able to have two different apps to read your mail. Later on down the road I am hoping that they will bring features that will let me take phone calls via the PC and read/write SMS messages that go in and out via my phone.
  • Finally. Their implementation of Skype into messaging was awful. It was like Facebook integration all over again.
  • Sounds good on my phone, but not on my PC. Unless they keep the API exposed so I can use my call recorder, and give me the option to explicitly select my playback/recording devices at will (most of the time I use my headset, but when it's podcast time, I'd better be able to switch to my better USB microphone).
  • While I agree this is a great thing from the standpoint of updating the UI of Skype I also hope they don't do away with the integration on mobile.  I don't use it much, but when I do it is nice.
  • My problem with the current Windows 10 mobile Skype integrated into messaging is the hideous battry drain when I am logged in to Skype. And I can't disable Skype running in the background without disabling regular SMS notifications as well.  Maybe a UWP Skype app will allow background notifications without being such a battery hog?
  • Only one thing for you Microsoft. R.I.P Future of Microsoft is Dark.
  • What does it mean, R.I.P?
  • Does anyone know how SMS integration fits in?  
  • Anyone else notice that file explorer icon in the task bar of the first screenshot? Edit: It's easier to see using the Windows Central UWP app.
  • They need to stick with both. Having skype integration makes so much sense, and honestly with it being promised so long its not a good look to back away from that. Having the app can be for the people who don't feel like they're doing anything unless they have to scroll, click, wait for a splash screen, etc. Hopefully having it integrated will entice or convince other developers to add the same functionality.
  • lovely looking! cant wait the day that windows pc app gets killed by this app. desktop pc app is awful and clutered. btw, skype team better stop being *****. why does this app dont use icons from msdl 2.0? PS: hope this doesnt mean that they kill skype integration. and this comes from a rarely skype user. it makes sense to have both. only pc app needs killed. integration is best for fast switching from carrier to skype, so when ppl need short interactions, they dont have to open the skype app. makes windows platform more cooler(but the integration needs more work atm)
  • everyone who want this should go to Feedback Hub did it and if everyone follow they should hear it
    i think this is our best chance
  • Logout
    Best feature /s
  • Lots of people worried Microsoft will abandon the combined Skype / SMS experience in the Messaging app and instead focus on a Skype-only app that doesn't do SMS.   Complaining here won't help -- go to the Feedback Hub and submit feedback to Microsoft directly!
  • Yes, yes!!!
  • Wire is a wonderful messaging platform that does everything that WLM used to do but better.  The creators of Skype, developers that worked with WLM and other messaging platforms left Microsoft and created Wire. It has all the capabilites of Skype and works across all much better than Skype, lol.  Skype is a hot mess!
  • I still miss the Metro app.
  • "And much more" translates to "There isn't really anything else but we feel this list is too short"
  • Whoa, does this mean they're gonna break skype out of the messaging app on mobile? Because that feature is really nice, on par with apple's I message. Reminds me of what 8/8.1 should have been!
  • I need skype on mobile to support stuff like shared desktop while in continuum mode. 950XL is usable as work machine when I need to log to remote desktop and work there. The problem is that remote pc does not have skype. So I need to run out on my side. And for that I currently need PC if the need arise. Otherwise I not much of a fan of that unified messenger. I would be if it could integrate other apps like WhatsApp... Also skype with sim messages mess up notifications for band. I was receiving only one type, so I use standalone skype and now I get notifications properly.
  • finally, i actually like skype video and messanging app but i cant send mojis!
  • I just want two things from Skype anymore at this point: integration of text chat into the phone's messaging app. Has been accomplished. And the ability to select between the regular phone app and Skype to make voice calls. And ONE app, not three different ones. That can't be too damn hard, Microsoft, is it? And FFS, quit changing direction more often than I change my pants.
  • Random thought: My Samsung TV is telling me the Skype support on it is going away soon. Makes that camera on it even more useless.
  • Ok. That's a great 180. It would be better. I hate having to see that in my messaging app.
  • Oh my MS! Don't they communicate internally?!? Why say they won't release a Skype app then 2 days later they will!?? Obviously the app is already under works!! It is beyond retarded!
  • This has got to be the most confusing product handling. If there's a universal Skype app, then get rid of the integration into Messaging...there's just no need. Text messages within the Messaging app, period. Skype IM/voice/video in this ONE Skype app. No Skype video, Skype voice, Skype in Messaging, plus a standalone Skype app, Skype desktop app...
  • Pleae give me a link to download. Thanks