) is a telecommunications application software product that specializes in providing video chat and voice calls between computers, tablets, mobile devices, the Xbox One console, and smartwatches via the Internet and to regular telephones. Much of the service is free, but Skype Credit or a subscription is required to call a landline or a mobile phone number.Skype additionally provides instant messaging services. Users may transmit both text and video messages, and may exchange digital documents such as images, text, and video. At the end of 2010, there were over 660 million worldwide users, with over 300 million estimated active each month as of August 2015.
agreed to acquire Luxembourg-based Skype Technologies SA for approximately US.5 billion in up-front cash and e Bay stock, plus potential performance-based consideration.
On 21 December 2015, Gurdeep Singh Pall, Corporate Vice President of Skype, announced that Microsoft acquired the technology from Talko, "maker of an innovative mobile app for on-the-go business communications (...) Together, the new technology and talent will help us deliver great new features and capabilities in both Skype and Skype for Business." In January 2016, Skype announced it would roll out free group video calling to users on mobile devices, including i OS and Android.
In February 2016, Microsoft announced that it had started to introduce group calling on smartphones and tablets in North America and Western Europe.
Shortly after its acquisition, Microsoft began integrating the Skype service with its own products.
Along with taking over development of existing Skype desktop and mobile apps, the company developed a dedicated client app for its newly released, touch-focused Windows 8 and Windows RT operating systems.