Skype is a curious app. It took VOIP telephone calls to the masses for the first time, and in the pre-WhatsApp era, it was the king of internet chat.
Fast-forward to today and a lot has changed. It no longer enjoys an unrivaled hegemony over its rivals. Even apps like Instagram and Snapchat have started to eat into its user base.
As such, Microsoft sensibly decided it was time to give the aging app a refresh. The preview version of the update can now be downloaded by anyone to try out.
What’s New in Skype?
As the tech world moved to sleeker designs and flatter colors, Skype was left behind. The desktop version of the app still looked like it was stuck in 2008.
A redesign of the app is the centerpiece of the new release. There are more whites, colored accents, and a fresh motif.
You’ll also find some new features. Namely, you can now make use of in-call image-sharing, add reactions, and “@” mentions to notify members in group conversations. And make sure you check out the new media gallery: it makes finding the content you’ve shared much easier.
How to Get the Skype Preview
You can grab a copy off Microsoft’s website. But be warned: a lot of “old” Skype features are still absent. Microsoft promised they’ll arrive “eventually.” (Where have we heard that before?)
To get started, navigate to the Skype Insider website from the computer you want to install it on. If you want to grab a copy of the Windows, you’ll need to click Get Windows Insider Access and enter your Microsoft Account credentials.
If you visit from a Mac, just click Download for Desktop. You don’t need to sign up for Insider Access.
Have you tried the new version of Skype? Do you like it? Let us know in the comments.