Skype has released details on its app for Windows 8, revealing that it will launch alongside Microsoft’s new OS on the 26th October.
The app will be heavily integrated into Windows 8, running constantly in the background and featuring its own Live tile on the Start page (Window 8’s home screen). This tile will instantly show you any missed calls or messages you have received, so you won’t need to open the app to check. Skype claims that, despite the app running constantly, it won’t make a large impact on the battery life of mobile Windows 8 devices.
Open the app and you will see recent messages and calls on the left of the screen, with your “favourite” contacts on the right. Calls take up a full screen by default, but you can move them to the left or right if you want to multitask: they’ll then sit in a column while another app runs in the remainder of the window. If you want to call a landline or mobile number, you might welcome the fact that Skype has redesigned the dialer to be much larger and clearer
Skype will be linked to the Windows 8 People app, drawing details from your contacts and integrating them with your existing Skype contacts. It works the other way too: log into the Skype app with your Microsoft account and all your contacts will be automatically integrated into People.
The Windows 8 release date is fast approaching – it’s this Friday, 26 October – and Skype’s position as a key component of the new OS is clear, because Windows 8 users will be able to download it from day one. It’ll also be pre-installed on the vast majority of new Windows 8 machines such as the Dell XPS 12 and Asus Zenbook U500.