Microsoft to keep investing in Skype despite success with Teams

San Francisco, May 26 (IANS) Despite its video conferencing app Teams breaking all records in the social distancing times, Microsoft said it would continue to invest in Skype that has crossed 40 million daily active users.

Purchased in 2011 for $8.5 billion, Skype communication tool has failed to keep up with other messaging rivals to date, while Teams has seen a meteoric rise as millions of people work from home.

“We’re continuing to invest in Skype. It’s growing through all this. You’ll see some new features. You’ll see Skype and Teams interoperate,” Jeff Teper, CVP for Microsoft 365, told VentureBeat.

Microsoft Teams registered a new daily record of 2.7 billion meeting minutes in a single day on March 31 – 200 per cent increase from 900 million on March 16.

The number of weekly Teams mobile users grew more than 300 per cent from early February to March.

“As Teams lands with consumers and does more things, I think people will pick Teams. But we’re not going to be heavy-handed about this. People love Skype. And so, we’re not going to get ahead of ourselves here,” Teper was quoted as saying.

Microsoft recently revealed that Skype usage was up 70 per cent (month-over-month), while Skype to Skype calling minutes was up 220 per cent in the Covid-19 times.

The tech giant said it plans to continue adding new features to Skype.

“Facebook, for example, has multiple tools with Instagram, Messenger, and WhatsApp. Those all continue to grow. They did work to interoperate with them. They’re not forcing a migration from one of their consumer tools to another,” said Teper.

“Teams has a very different flavour to it than Skype. It does overlap in the same need, just like Messenger and WhatsApp do from Facebook. And so, we’ll have them interoperate, but we’re going to continue to show love to the Skype customer base,” he was quoted as saying.

At its ‘Build 2020′ virtual conference last week, Microsoft introduced several new capabilities in its video meet app Teams which has become a hub for teamwork combining meetings, calls, chat, and collaboration into a single tool.



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