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MWC 2012: Skype Beta Launches On Windows Phone

Steve McCaskill is editor of TechWeekEurope and ChannelBiz. He joined as a reporter in 2011 and covers all areas of IT, with a particular interest in telecommunications, mobile and networking, along with sports technology.

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Microsoft and Skype announce the long-awaited VoIP app for Microsoft’s Windows Phone mobile operating system

Skype has launched the beta of a Skype app for Windows Phone, with a gold (release candidate) version of the app becoming available in April.

Windows Phone users can download the app from the Marketplace, with Skype claiming that the release means that the VoIP service is now available on “almost all of the leading mobile operating systems”.

Talk for free

Users can make free audio and video calls to their Skype contacts on Wi-Fi, 3G and 4G connections as well as affordable calls to landlines and mobiles using Skype credit. It says that the client has been tested on a range of Windows Phone devices, including the Nokia Lumia 710 and 800, HTC Titan and Radar, and the Samsung Focus S and Focus Flash.

“One of the things we know people want to do on their phone is Skype,” said Terry Myerson, corporate vice president of Windows Phone. “The Metro design in the new Skype app for Windows Phone makes Skype shine in a whole new way, delivering a clean and simple experience.”

“Skype for Windows Phone Beta supports the most important Skype features you’ve come to know and love,” commented Rick Osterloh, vice president of products at Skype. “You will be especially thrilled by the clean and simple Skype experience that the Metro user interface delivers on your Windows Phone. It has never before been so easy to connect with the people you care about most.”

“This is only the beginning for Skype for Windows Phone … it’s just going to get better and better,” he promised. “We see incredible potential to include Skype capabilities in Windows Phone in order to enable a great experience for you.”

Last month, at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas, a Skype executive said that a Skype client would be released soon. Microsoft purchased Skype last October in an $8.5 billion (£5.4bn) acquisition, while in November, Skype improved its integration with Facebook, allowing its users to call each other directly through the social network.

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