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Skype undergoes redesigning to add Snapchat like features
June 12, 2017, 11:45 am
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Microsoft acquired Skype nearly six years ago, and ever since then it feels like the messaging service has been experiencing an existential crisis. Now, Microsoft is once again redesigning Skype. Described as “the next generation of Skype,” the new design focuses on messaging.

Skype is well known and used widely for video and audio calls, but iMessage, WhatsApp, Messenger, Snapchat and other messaging services have taken the lead for today’s conversations. The new Skype messaging interface now includes three sections in a conversation: find, chat, and capture. Find lets you search through a conversation, or find images, restaurants, and even add-ins like YouTube or Giphy to add content into a message. Chat is the basic conversation view you wouldd expect with options for emoji or picture additions, but the newest section is capture.

Capture feels a lot like Snapchat within Skype, and it immediately launches into the camera to let you take pictures or hold down for video. As you hold down for video you will immediately recognize one of the more subtle design changes in this new version of Skype, a squiggly line that represents the amount of time for a recording. This line is also used for calling, or when contacts are typing. Once you have captured a video or picture you can then add stickers, text, or simply annotate it, all just like Snapchat.

Skype is also introducing a new Highlights feature that is again a lot like Snapchat stories. Highlights lets you post a stream of photos and videos that friends can view and react with emoticons. Even in text- or video-based conversations you will be able to react on Skype with emoticons. It seems the new Skype UI is really designed to make you use more and more of the new chat features available. Even calling is getting redesigned for this new version of Skype. You can drag and drop people around in conversations, and react with emoticons during calls.

Microsoft is only rolling out the new Skype design to mobile at first, with desktop to follow soon. Android devices will first start seeing the new Skype design today, followed by iOS, Windows, and Mac.

 

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