Skype for Windows Phone 8 gets demoed in hands on video [Update]

A reimagined Skype client is on the way

Update: As we suspected this video was is no way sanctioned to be released publicly and as such, a copyright claim by AOL/Engadget has had it removed. Translation: this was suppose to be under wraps but was made public on accident.

Update 2: We found a second source of the video, catch it while you can

Skype for Windows Phone 8 has been demoed by Derrick Snyder, now head of mobile marketing at Skype. In the video, Snyder runs viewers through what we can all expect from the new client. Now, before we crack into what's shown in the video, it's worth noting that this is a brand new application for Windows Phone, though many of the new features have been covered before.

Snyder states that it has been completely rewritten from the ground up in native code, with presumably further access granted by Microsoft since the takeover. Featuring a new UI, Skype for Windows Phone 8 will enable users to get to contacts faster and engage in conversation more conveniently. The first new addition one will notice is the support for Live Tiles (available in all three sizes - large tile includes latest message received). 

So, as this is a new app that has been developed by the team to take advantage of the next version of Microsoft's mobile operating system, it will run in the background. That's right people, Skype will not have to be running in the foreground for calls and messages to be received. According to Snyder, when you boot up the device Skype will then be able to receive calls / messages from contacts.

Speaking of calls, any incoming voice chat requests from contacts will be displayed as normal calls that we're used to with Windows Phone. Contact's display photo will be displayed with the usual accept and reject options. The only difference is the Skype ringtone will sound, so you'll know whether it's Skype or an actual call via the network.

Another fairly large implementation is the included integration into Windows Phone itself. Skype is now a service that can be configured much like Facebook, Twitter, Microsoft Account and more. The service will appear in the People Hub where conversations and Skype calls can be initiated in contact profiles. What's more is Skype will automatically pull contact information from the People Hub and display the listing within the app.

Group chat in the new Skype app is straightforward and easy to use. Adding contacts into an already populating conversation and adding a topic title for the group chat is just a few menu options away. As well as group chat, Snyder also quickly looked over favourites, which can be configured with contacts loaded in the app.

It's a fairly large improvement over what we're currently sporting on Windows Phone 7.5, and we're sure you're all eagerly awaiting its release (we guess will be some time after Apollo's release). Our Rafael Rivera wrote up a masterpiece on why Skype is in its current state, which is well worth checking out. Be sure to check out the video below for a visual walkthrough of what we've noted in this article.

Source: YouTube; via Reddit

Rich Edmonds
Senior Editor, PC Build

Rich Edmonds is Senior Editor of PC hardware at Windows Central, covering everything related to PC components and NAS. He's been involved in technology for more than a decade and knows a thing or two about the magic inside a PC chassis. You can follow him over on Twitter at @RichEdmonds.

  • Ahh ive been waiting to see how well it is integrated into the os but the video doesnt work for me
  • how is that well integrated .. has noone noticed the huge loading time (two times )
    thats my issues with windows phone each time they open an already opened app  by tapping on the live tile its just keeps loading again again again and again 
  • Both times he opened it (once from contacts list, once from live tile), it took about 5-6 seconds for the app to be open, done loading, and ready to use. This is a tad slow, yes, but not overbearingly slow. Not a big deal to me.
  • thats with skype  but imagine  with  a IM like whatsapp everytime someone  sends me a messega  i have to wait  6 sec to load up i went crazy over that. yes i could  use back button then  cycle trough apps and select it  but thats  the same  to me 
  • and that right there is the difference between WP8 "live tiles" and BB10 "Active Frames",  not bad tho
  • I know what you mean with whatsapp.  Hopefully with the wp8 version of whatsapp, they've optimised it to start up quicker.  At least with Skype, incoming calls are instant.
  • Yes!!!!!!!!!!
  • Cool, just too bad for the 7.8 WP people :-( But me on my L920 will be just fine :-D
  • Christ, enough with the 7.8 already...
  • No crap.  This site is pretty much worthless due to the Nokia fanboys.  Click on an Ativ or 8x topic and all you see is 920 this, 920 that.  It's a freaking smartphone.
  • Im seeing it too, were all windows phone fans but somehow, buy another other than Nokia and ur a sick.of it. Im really digging the 8x alot nut to some WP "fans" that's sacreligious!! Different strokes for different folks!!
  • A preference doesnt make ppl fanboys. Ativ is nice, but boring & plastic. 8x is nice, but low storage. 920 is the best of the 3. I'm still waiting for a flagship phone with sd, that isn't the ativ. I have a HD7, and would happily support HTC if they release a mobile I want to buy... Fingers crossed for HD8
  • The 920 is plastic too bro. Polycarbonate is just a high strength plastic
  • Nah...not enough OF the 7.8 for me.
  • Looks great!
  • You forgot to add "Thanks, Jarrod, for the tip!" :)
  • Waaaaahhhh
  • Yeah, and the list of you and the other 4,000 people who sent it in would be longer and harder to write than the whole article. Do you think you're the only one who reads the web and passes the tips on to them?
  • Very nice to see it integrated into the people hub. I take it that it's also included in the alternative methods of contact when in a message thread....
  • Yeah, I'm interested to see if it's integrated in the messaging hub.
  • Not related but Surface pricing could doom it
  • Not at all the price will go down as time does and reviews of how awesome it is plus Microsoft can throw in all kinds of deals, u gotta remember office is about $130 value included
  • I can't wait for when they're proven wrong. You get soo much more with surface than other consumption tablets
  • 299$ would be an awesome price... But seriously i think making the keyboard free would be more then enough... That article makes the surface seem lesser than the ipad/google/amazon tabs when in reality its much more
  • Looks very cool! I'll definitely be using Skype quite a bit when I get my WP8 phone.
  • Two things:
    1) Native code. It will not run like this on WP 7.8
    2) It took 9 seconds to lauch from start screen...really?
    Can wait for the next Nexuses (Nexii) to beat the crap out of this, sick of this L800 dumphone. 
    I hope you go bankrupcy Nokia for abandoning your loyal customers.
  • Wish unto others as you would have them wish unto you.
  • Precisely.Right now I'm paying for two years a legacy device (L800) that I have planned to stop using in a couple of weeks, then I will have to pay for an unlocked device which will cost me around $500-600, since I'm a posgrad student and I'm already broken this will bring me even down on my bankrupcy. But I prefer that than continuing with this dumbphone. Be aware windows phone new adopters, you'll be kick in the nuts soon enough, trust me.
  • Bankrupcy?  Seriously?  You're willing to go into bankrupcy for a freakin phone??  You do not have to upgrade, wow!  Use your head man, jeez.
  • I need a phone to communicate with other people. Trust me with a windows phone you dont communicate effectively with other people unless if you call. But who calls anymore, I just call my mom to be honest.
    -Whatsapp, goes like hell and is the most used IM .
    -Messenger...sometimes it does not connect and you cannot share pics and is from MS.
    -FB chat, it does not connect and sometimes it breaks
    -Kik, slow like hell too, and sometimes you dont get the messages.
    -Skype, as soon as you close it, it does not work.
    What do I have? email? sms?...I used to do that with my e72 and it had a physical keyboard.
    With this phone you cannot comunicate effectively, that's the true even if it hurts.
  • That's odd. I seem to communicate just fine with my phone. Strangely, I seem to get in contact with whom ever I choose through various means. Imagine that. Just checked. Yep. My phone works great. Windows Phone 8 comes out next week. I'm gonna go out on a very thin limb here and say that my phone will still work after the introduction of the upgraded OS. I am also willing to bet you a new Lumia 920 that, barring external forces, user error/fault and/or defect, your phone will be working after the announcement too. Ask yourself this question. Why did I buy this phone? If you bought the phone with reasonable expectations and with at least some research, I bet your original reason for purchasing still holds up. Unless, you bought the phone thinking that technology was going to come to a halt for you and nothing better would ever come along. Again... why did you buy the phone? Windows Phone 8 doesn't affect your reasons behind that. But, now you're angry at someone else because of a decision you made. Remember when the first iPhone came out and people rushed to get it then six months later the price dropped? They got pissed and wanted a refund. What is it with self-entitled or misguided people who attempt to hold others accountable for their decisions? That's like those people who commit crimes then get pissed at the cops who arrest them, attorneys who prosecute them and judges who sentence them. Nothing about that makes sense. And, man, you have more post here than anybody, 7 at last count. Take a deep breath and be happy that you were in a position to buy such a nice device in the first place. Because, many people, even in your country, cannot afford such things because they're trying not to starve and live on the streets. Toodles.
  • Dude knew what he was getting when he got the phone. To admit otherwise means he's a dullard that can't do any research and is easilly parted from his money. "I got some magic beans for sell if you want them, MiguelTorro... 
    Anyway, people like that will never be happy. The goal line is always being pushed back  in technology and the "hot" phone cools off in 3-6 month when the next hot phone takes its place. Good luck buying a new phone every year or multiple times a year. If that's how they want to blow their money then so be it.
    The are a ton of Android user still on version 2.xx and don't care. They don't root their phones and they don't keep up with the Googs version releases. All they know is that their phone still works even if it is not the newest toy on the block. Ignorance is bliss apparantly, especially for ignorant, WP hating trolls.
  • "Be aware windows phone new adopters, you'll be kick in the nuts soon enough, trust me."
    That's a funny statement.  Maybe you need to clarify what 'new adopters' means'.  
    Personally, I've been using Windows Mobile phones for about 5 or 6 years now and have had no problems.  I started with the very old WM5 or WM6 device (I forget) and moved on to the WP7 device (currently still using my original Samsung Focus that's about 2 years old now).  Next I'll buy a Windows 8 phone and continue to enjoy the Windows Mobile platform, which so far has been extremely awesome. I love the integration and ease of use, especially with my Wife and I sharing calendars, etc and never needing to 'sync' our phones (it's all automatic!).
    -Still Waiting to be Kicked in the Nuts.
  • LMAO! MiguelTorro is been whining for a long time.
  • Hmm, fortunately I don't have "nuts" to get kicked in. ^_~. But seriously, you're taking this too much to heart. No one can make you spend your money except the government. You are confusing a want (a smart phone vs a dumb phone) with a need and whining about it on a public forum for fans of the thing you hate. Please, grow up, hon.
  • The phone is clearly NOT what is "dumb" here.
    Every company comes out with new phones all the time.  I don't understand why this is any different.  The phone will keep working just fine and offer all the features for two years.
    Anyone who feels that it is now worthless and that they must chuck it and upgrade with no other choice is a complete and utter fool.  Sorry, but your claims are simply ludicrous.
  • You guys can call me whatever you want, I wont. Sites like this and people like you mislead people that do "research". What's wrong about whining? Do these people pay you to defend them? Wasn't this site one of the ones that claimed that the lumia would definitely get WP 8 and then one of the ones that actually applaud the decision of not doing it? Who's the fanboy, we're all in a supposedly techsite, even if the extensive adds selling covers and stuffs for windows phone makes you think otherwise. so far, as an owner and user of a WP device I haven't said lie about the OS, I was happy about the buy and I didn't care about the fact of using my phone to share the internet with my far more useful iPod touch, you're trying a "new" platform and you understand that simple things like using a custom sms tone will come later, but then you see that it won't and the you see that not even the new OS will and so on. I understand the speed of tech but I didn't bought a gingerbread phone a bought a flagship and this was wrong.
  • Sorry to bust ur balls but if ur that broke you shouldn't even be considering to get it now. There's always better phones later. Btw 920 is exclusive for 6months but the rumored 92X isn't so it's not the end of the world.
  • What took 9 seconds.....for the call to come through?  That is no different really than the amount of time it takes for a mobile call to be connected, or many other voip based service.  In terms of actually launching the app, it didn't really seem that slow to me, certainly no slower than app like facebook and other 'connected' apps.
    What exactly did this have to do with Nokia, it is about Skype, and in fact he was using an HTC device - but on the subject of Nokia, how have they abandoned their loyal customers? Pretty certain they are the only OEM doing anything for WP7 customers and you can't really moan about 7.8 yet as no one really knows what it will or won't be able to do (with the exception of hardware specifics such as nfc)
  • They will not. When they go silent the news are bad.
  • Ah, just young and ignorant with no idea about business. I guess you can be forgiven about you stupid views then
    Just to give you a tip, being silent has nothing to do with meaning that bad news is on its way
    In fact, if you think about it, everything has been very secretive (more likely to combat other manufacturer copying features than not having feature sets), and then also look at the broader picture of what MS are doing, it isn't just about phone, it is about their whole eco system, from Xbox all the way through to Windows and beyond into the corporate world....everything is happening together
    I think it is very likely that 7.8 won't be talked about at the same time as the WP8 launch, but I am pretty certain it will come very shortly afterwards. I think the next 6 weeks will be full of announcements from MS
  • Nokia is stil releasing WP7 devices. They will not abandon WP7 and neither will Microsoft. Just like Android 2.2/2.3 it has become a low budget OS. Nokia and other OEMs are planning to release WP7.8 phones in upcomming markets.
    There are some developers who have no interest in bringing their apps to tablets and to them developing for WP7 has the benefit of more potential customers (at least early on). So WP7 isnt going anywhere in the next few years.
    I stil love my firstgen Windows Phone (HTC Mozart), it has brought me more value then any phone before it. The Androids before it were dead at this point or two versions behind. Not getting WP8 is sour but its a generation jump so WP8 owners can be sure of many updates. And since I'm up for a new phone anyway I'll gladly make the switch to WP8. Getting it now assures me that I'll get a lot of value in return.
  • Please explain how they abandoned their customers? They can't put WP8 on current hardware because each chip is encrypted to the OS and that encryption doesn't exist on these chips. They have no choice. And as far as I know, they're still pushing apps for 7.5...I have a Gen 1 Samsung Focus if you want to talk about who's been abandoned.
  • They could have, they just dont want to. About the encryption is  Ok if it is for enterprise but for a normal customer it doesn't look that necessary. Have you read an article months ago when they say that this RT kernel was actually faster on the current devices than the current kernel?...they just dont want to bro. Microsoft sells software, they won't give it for free.  
  • That is true, they wanted to make WP8 a future proof OS. So, after that decision was made they though "we can't just ditch our existing users", and therefore create 7.8, which to date the only official thing that we know about it is the new start screen.....nothing else whatsoever. Do we know that there won't be better Skype integration for it? no, we don't! After all, the Facebook and twitter integration is all native code written by MS, so being that Skype is now owned by MS, there is nothing to say there isn't some new integration for 7.8 that we don't know about yet. I just don't get how you can slate something when you actually have no idea about it. Maybe just waiting to find out before you try to give it a bad name.
  • That's true, I have no idea. But there's a pattern.
  • Guys..somebody here is itching to get clobbered...:P
  • FIt didn't take 9 secs to launch for the startscreen, and go ahead and get your stupid LG Nexus phone.....WHO CARES? You're entitled to get whatever device you want. Furthermore, what is it going to beat the 800 at? not boot up, or point/shoot/upload to social. Stop talking out of your *ss. The  only thing Android has over WP is more apps customization. Don't bo cther replying as I don't care to reply to anymore of your stupidity
  • Is ok if you dont reply. But if somebody is having second thoughts on this platform and I help to incline the balance I'll be saitsfied. It burns more when an actual user of the platform tells the %&&ing truth doesn't it?
    I'm actually waiting for a second galaxy nexus and if it doesnt happen I'm going iPhone. ...just to finish, everything is about the apps, listen to what Elop said a year ago: this is an ecosystem war. Oh, one more thing a 180g phone, are you nuts is an effing brick!
  • He's got a point-- messaging has limitations on this phone. Character limit on text messages? Wtf? Just break it up and send it as 2! Also, often picture messages don't come through when my friends send them... It'll just display a link that says 'get media content now' and when you click it nothing happens. Wtf? I love WP otherwise, but we have yo admit there ARE some things that need improving.
  • What character limit? My messages are broken up just fine. I do have the problem sending picture messages but that because of my pre-paid provider. I get around it easily by using viber.
  • Nope - that's your carrier. I've heard tmobile phones are like that. For the rest of us it all works perfectly - it tells you how many messages it will be broken into next to the character counter. Media comes through fine too - I've only seen that error when I had no data enabled
  • Hit the gym bro
  • Back to AAS, you!
  • 9 seconds? To me it looked more like 4-5 seconds to launch (1:59-2:03), and then a few more seconds (2:03-2:06) for it to sync the "recent" list from somewhere (local db? cloud?). I would think though that the secod part, loading the recent list, should be instantanious by using local db and syncing call stats in the background even when it's not running.
  • Yes 9sec from press to ready for interaction, that's bad. And why does it have to go through one black loading screen, one splash, and then waiting to sync. We are waiting through 3 damn instances. It feels like forever. I agree with him that pretty much all chat-apps are slow as hell and not handy at all. I thought WP8 would be faster than this, Im disappointed.
  • Does Skype load "fast" on anything? It's always been a bulky app/service. But to be honest from that video, that "wait time" did not seem bad at all...I wouldn't have even brought it up.
  • it is slow.. mayeb not if you use it once a day  but  several times  in couple minutes is so frustrating to use and to wait all the time 
  • that slow loading time  is a pain in the a.....
    if they cant fix that it might be a deal breaker for me 
  • Can someone explain to me why a whatsapp like experience should'nt be possible for WP7.8? Apparently it doesn't run in the background in a P2P manner (not draining you battery) on WP8.
  • It STILL has that "waiting" screen even when he woke up the phone! So no instant wake up like they have in android i.e. in whatsapp on android, it goes back to where you left it. But with this one, it takes back to the contact list instead of the chat from which he went to home screen!
    Also, a tighter integration would have really looked better instead of opening ugly skype interface to chat, why not do it what has been done to FB chat?!
    And - NO, instagram doesn't look like baked in either ;)
  • Well I don't disagree about the integration with Messaging hub... that would have been nice since they're already integrating with People hub and elsewhere. But I don't see how you can speak about Instagram yet.
  • He just showed us accounts linked and I'm going by that list that they've linked everything they could in that phone!
    If Instagram is out there, we gotta see a leak now. It's just 8 days to W8 and 11 to WP8!!
  • I agree instagram should be there on launch
  • Looks good just wished it didn't have to load the app to be used. Not even sure if that is possible but in my expectations its what I was wanting lol!
  • I want to take that WP8 app out for a steak dinner...
    And I would call the next day.
  • The Skype app is a saint! Do you hear me? A saint!
  • Loooooooool syst3m made my day!!!!!!
  • Nice to see the 8x in action. Skype looks to be great and with these features could be a killer app for MS. I hate not having skype on my playbook and it's hardly usable on iOS. At least in my experiance. The 8x looks so gorgeous! I want all the Nokia goodness, but i just can't get over how beautiful this phone is. 
  • Thanks for the preview.  It will be nice to see how things look and behave once WP8 is actually out and about in the hands of real consumers.  People super critical of preview software are funny.  This may not be an Android experience, but who cares?  We also don't have many other things that some Android fans quite love.  This platform won't satisfy everyone and that is consistent with what we've seen in the Apple vs Android vs Blackberry vs every competitor in the mobile space.  They each bring something different to the table.  Whether those things are better or worse is up to the consumer making the decision between platforms.
  • Is it still missing voicemail support?
    I pay, what I consider to be, quite a lot for the "online number" and voicemail service and it bugs me I can not listen to the voicemails. :(
  • YES! YES! YES!
  • I noticed that he went back to the start screen with the Windows key. He then went back into Skype and it had to re-load again(!) That means no true multitasking for Windows Phone 8 either... I'm quite disappointed to be honest. Okay, the app is written in native code and startup time is noticeable faster than with WP7, but I would expect apps to resume instantly in WP8 just like in Windows 8. Anyone thoughts about this?
  • I'm with you.  Can't wait until next week when WP8's true capabilities will finally, finally be revealed... it'll be interesting to see how multi-tasking is presented.  Too bad this video demo didn't use the back button to re-enter the app, just to see what would happen.
  • That's the thing, shouldn't matter whether he used back key or not. Opening the app should bring the app up in its last known state, not restarting the app.
  • But it does matter how you go back to the app. On WP, you go back to a running app by using the back button or the multitask selection (hold down back button). Selecting the app from the start screen or launcher is designed to lauch the apps fresh and is a method to effectively kill an app if it's not functioning right and relaunch it without having to use a "task manager" approach to killing it.
  • It is supposed to open the pinned state of the app.. Like a particular section or the launch state. So, effectively it will launch the state you have pinned..Whats so bad about it??? There could be a separate implementation of the already open apps in the memory, but it cant the tile pinned. maybe you could open the existing app state in the memory through the app jump list?
  • That has nothing to do with true multitasking. Stop using buzzwords you don't understand.
  • I don't think true multitasking is favorable at all. Just look at Android, it takes a lot of power just to run smoothly and it requires restarts when you really need your phone to perform.
    I like how both Windows 8 and Windows Phone 8 have their apps in stasis. Low power cosumption and you dont notice it if you reopen the app via the app switcher. For the end-user the experience is the same as with multitasking. They just need to allow certain apps like GPS to run in the background (which it does now).
    However Windows 8 is smarter about switching apps. If you press on the title of an app that it already opened then it doesnt restart. You dont need to use the app switcher, the start screen works just fine. I really dont understand why they wont allow WP8 to do the same. Via the app switcher you can also get back to it. So WP8 could recognize if an app is in stasis and reopen it instead of restarting it.
    However Im imagine some people might want to restart an app at some point. Right now the only way to do that is by relaunching it from the start screen. It is the onlyreason I can imagine why they wont allow you to reopen apps from stasis via the start screen. BUT they should allow us to close apps from the app switcher. Just drag down an app while in the app switcher to close it (similar to Windows 8). It would have been the best of both worlds.
    Luckily the possibilities are there so hopefully they'll fix it in an future update. It is obvious the Windows 8 and WP8 design teams need to work towards each other so perhaps this will move over from Windows 8.
  • "However Im imagine some people might want to restart an app at some point. Right now the only way to do that is by relaunching it from the start screen."
    This is incorrect.  If you press the back button while in an app to exit it will truly close it.  It stays open in suspend mode if you press the Start button.  You can close all apps on the phone by continuing to hit the back button until hitting it on the Start menu doesn't go to an app.
    So they certainly could implement resuming from the Live Tile and just leave the Back button functionality in.  Unfortunately it's not the most obvious thing.
  • I just noticed that when he relaunched it from the start screen it actually resumed. It was ready to use and in full speed in 2 seconds. I doubt this will count for all apps but for Skype at least there is no re-loading only resuming. Loading took 8 seconds, resuming only 2 seconds.
  • Resume, loading content. What's the difference? Its 8-9 sec to wait. Its too much.
  • What's the difference? I already mentioned the difference, it's 6 SECONDS.
    And how is 8 seconds too much for the innitial launch? Skype is more then just a whatsapp alternative. Whatsapp has no right taking that long to load but Skype is understandable.
    Afterwards it takes only 2 seconds to resume without being a battery drain when its in the background.
  • @Ronnet We already wrote about that. VOIP and GPS apps can run in the background so they will always "resume".
  • How does Microsoft account integration work? The Facebook linking is annoying in their desktop app.
  • This looks great for windows phone and I am excited for the new features and speed that was shown in the video, but the question still remains. Will you be able to start a call, and hit the home key and open into another app and remain on the phone call or will it end? Since it seems to be baked in and using the normal phone app i would hope you'd be allowed to have a "true" multitasking expierence here but we'll see.
  • As is, it can be used as a flashlight app as well, it seriously needs a dark theme.
  • So it's not actually baked into the OS? I didn't think it was going to be a separate app
  • No, it isn't. All VoIP apps can plug in to WP8, with both a background agent and I believe some integration into the People hub.
  • Correct.
  • Nice can't wait for my red lumia 920!!!!
  • Integration seems poor, should use the people hub either way skype as alone saves me lots of money so who cares about the 9seconds, like really?
  • Just to be more accurate I think it's ~ 6 sec. Comparing to how it's on Titan, it's way faster.
  • Can we CHAT and TALK on video call like we do on laptop?! No!?
  • You currently can on the 7.5 version so I don't see why not
  • The HTC 8x looks quite ugly. It seems just as misproportioned as the iphone 5. Why did they make it so tall and skinny. Looks gross.
  • Tentative.
  • I personally love the htc offerings
  • Great, WP8 still has the same design flaw as WP7 that apps restart when you tap the tile even when they were already running before. Sigh. It is really annoying when you get a toast message in WhatsApp and you have to wait approximately 6-8 seconds until the app is fully loaded again and you are able to respond.
  • been there done that .. its one of those things that annoy me the most.. and one of those things that made me go back to iphone..sigh
    i was realy hoping for a miracle to happen and that msft would fix those loading times / app restarts
  • I actually like the fact that you can restart an app by tapping the tile again.
  • Is there another link to the video?  It's no longer available due to AOL/Engadget claiming DMCA claim.
  • Couldn't load video!!
  • Sweet
  • t's back up on this link:
  • try this link:
  • Still works. Thanks!