Skype rolls out video-messaging beta for non-Microsoft platforms

Skype rolls out video-messaging beta for non-Microsoft platforms

Summary: Skype has added a new video messaging capability to Skype on iOS, Mac and Android. Windows support is coming too... some day.


Microsoft's Skype division has rolled out a beta of its new video-messaging capability for Skype on February 15. It works on iOS, Mac and Android versions of Skype.

What about Windows, Windows 8 and Windows Phone? Video-messaging support has not been added on these platforms, and Skype officials are not providing a date as to when it will be, though it supposedly is (at least on Windows and Windows 8, based on what Skype told The Verge).

Yes, Microsoft did buy Skype two years ago. But Skype seems to be continuing to add new features and fixes to any/all of its platforms, regardless of which vendor makes them.

Video Messages, which can be used for online and offline messaging, lets Skype users send up to three minutes of video to each other. According to The Verge, those using Skype for Windows or Windows Phone will receive a link to allow them to view video messages online.

The fact Skype was working on Video Messages has been known since last year. Premium subscribers are expected to be allowed to send an unlimited number of Video Messages, while those using free versions of Skype will be limited in how many video messages they can send and how long they will be retained, according to a leak from last year.

The new feature seems to be working for Skype users in the U.S. and U.K. I've asked Microsoft's Skype division for more details, including more on why there's no Windows support at present. No word back so far.

Update: A Microsoft spokesperson said Windows users will get the "send" Video Messages feature in late April. No word on when WP users will get this or why the feature is running behind on Windows. (I asked again.)

Microsoft rolled out updated versions of Skype for Windows and Mac this week. 

Topics: Unified Comms, Android, Apple, iOS, Microsoft


Mary Jo has covered the tech industry for 30 years for a variety of publications and Web sites, and is a frequent guest on radio, TV and podcasts, speaking about all things Microsoft-related. She is the author of Microsoft 2.0: How Microsoft plans to stay relevant in the post-Gates era (John Wiley & Sons, 2008).

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  • Ridiculous!

    As much as I love the company and the products, its a shame they can't seem to keep the fleet on a unified course and speed.

    Microsoft's services divisions need to take some very valuable lessons from the Office teams working on Exchange, Lync, and SharePoint to understand how well products are supposed to work together.
  • Microsoft please please release one for WP8

    I am waiting for it to be on my Nokia Lumia 920.
    Ram U
  • This is bad

    When division of the company does not develop for their own platform then it does not look good. If own people do not trust/do not care about the platform how can others trust that platform? Does it have any future? Looks like the beginning of the end for Microsoft as we know it.
    It does not look good for windows phone too. If Microsoft division is not even developing feature for their desktop windows then what chance does windows phone have? Somebody should be FIRED!
    • Your reading into it way too much, or just trolling pehaps?

      I don't think even you seriously believed what you just wrote.
      The beginning of the end for Microsoft as we know it because they just updated already written code for older mobile OS's, but haven't finished the code for brand spanking new OS's?

      What one would be easier and quicker to do, in your opinion?
      NoMore MicrosoftEver
      • Re: What one would be easier and quicker to do, in your opinion?

        The better-designed OS, of course.
    • This strikes me as an exaggeration of the situation.

      "When division of the company does not develop for their own platform then it does not look good."

      They will, eventually. They're being given a lot of freedom (which IMO is a good thing), but I'm sure they're not abandoning Windows.

      This strikes me as an exaggeration of the situation.
      • Re: This strikes me as an exaggeration of the situation.

        Which part of "does not look good" are you having trouble with?
  • MS is priortising business and that is a shame

    MS is prioritising business first ( Windows, Office, Server, blah blah) and its a shame that Microsoft don't have time to add features to its own mobile platform, instead roll out for its competing platforms. The transition from WP7 to WP8 was a lot of work, and now Microsoft has no more excuse, bring out features that will leap frog the competition. The next release of MUST have all the features that enterprise and consumers need, otherwise developers will abandon the platform...
  • Works well on Skype for Android

    I happened to see this new feature by accident on my Skype for Android (on Samsung Galaxy S) phone about 2 weeks ago. Works very well... although Skype for Android itself is one of the buggiest & resource hogging apps I have.
    Robin Majumdar
  • wow

    Today was such a win for the other platforms. I get it, MS is trying to be the most open platform out of all of them -dubbed the "new" Microsoft, but when things like this happen, I can't help to wonder on whose decision it was to think that this was "ok" to do in a -oh so very capitalistic market. -A capitalistic market with other platforms being extremely hostile against the other. It almost seems like somebody over there is personally sabotaging the WP platform. Did they seriously not think that this would cause backlash over current WP customers and keep other platforms from criticizing the WP platform? Obviously some management over at Redmond need to go back to business school. WP will definitely not survive if this keeps up.
  • Embarrassing

    Microsoft can't get quality apps from one of it's own subdivisions! MS should be making apps that show the developer community the potential of Windows platforms. Instead, MS releases beta, buggy Windows 8 and WP8 apps with less features. What a showcase!
  • I'm a Huge Windows Phone Fan

    I absolutely love Windows Phone. But I am slowly coming to the realization that Microsoft's handling of nearly every situation involved with it is a farce.

    They always want us to wait for the next update which will supposedly bring the promised land of features, apps, and integration. These updates are always an improvement, but underwhelming.

    WP8 was supposed to solve the Skype issues... well, it kinda works. It's been in beta for months. With the last update I would say it is now 95% successful at notifying me of incoming calls. Good for them.

    But where are Pandora and Instagram (I couldn't care less but many do)? Where is the notification center? Separate volume profiles? Screen rotation lock? HDMI video out?

    Most embarrassingly, where the hell is PhotoSynth? And Skype continues to roll out new features and ignore all Windows clients? If MS cannot even get the companies they OWN to treat the platform as equal, what chance does MS have of convincing anyone else? This is just so disheartening. An incredible product that they are running into the ground by not moving fast enough, and not putting their muscle behind.

    Even if they would just communicate properly and let people know what's happening... "hey guys, we are releasing an update for Skype for iOS and Android, but not Windows and Windows Phone... here's why...". When they just leave silence out there people will always assume the worst. And unfortunately, they are usually right. If they don't explain themselves it's likely because they can't find any positive way to explain themselves.

    Microsoft, please don't continue to drive this platform into the ground... I really don't want to move to Android, and iOS is even less attractive to me. I want your products to be a success... I try to promote them whenever I feel it makes sense for the person asking me what to get. But unfortunately, I cannot recommend WP without also warning them "hey, there is a huge app problem with this platform... if you are into apps, you will always have to wait at least six months, and often will never even get the app you are looking for. So if you buy this, you will get the best phone interface, but know that you can never count on an app coming out."

    So many want to buy WP after seeing mine, but then they start asking... "I can still do my Citibank check deposits, right? I can use Instagram and Pandora?" And then they go buy Android.
  • ...but not Linux

    Imagine that!

    It looks like MS is prioritizing mobile platforms, which is an interesting decision, as mobile devices are the ones that already have text and video messaging capabilities built in (your typical PC doesn't). I'm guessing that OSX was included because it's easy to write for both OSX and iOS at the same time (or so I'm told).

    But no Windows (not even WP8) and no Linux. The second is cynically expected, but the first is bizarre. But at least I get to try it out on Android and see if it's actually useful to me.
    John L. Ries
  • video messaging

    SMS, MMS and push notifications are mainstream communications channels alongside more traditional e-mail, print and broadcast mediums.