Trusted Reviews is supported by its audience. If you purchase through links on our site, we may earn a commission. Learn more.

Skype goes back-to-basics, ditches unused Snapchat-like features

Microsoft has announced it is redesigning its Skype client once again, ditching some newer features following a backlash from users.

The company says it its ‘refocusing on the fundamentals’ of why people use Skype, which is to make calls and send messages. It says newer features like the Snapchat-like Highlights and Capture are being removed because they failed to interest users.

“This past year we explored some design changes and heard from customers that we overcomplicated some of our core scenarios,” writes Peter Skillman, Director of Design for Skype and Outlook in a blog post. “Calling became harder to execute and Highlights didn’t resonate with a majority of users. We needed to take a step back and simplify!”

Changes are also coming to the desktop version, with chats, calls, contacts and notifications simplifying navigation. Microsoft says it has listened to feedback from users when making the changes, which will reinforce accessibility of the core functionality.

Related: Best smartphone

“Your content is king,” Skillman writes. “We want to celebrate content AND give you a full range of color expression with light and dark themes. We toned down the visual range of the gradients and reintroduced a simplified Skype “Classic” blue theme—adjusted for contrast and readability. We also reduced some of the more decorative elements—such as notifications with a squiggle shape cut out—which weren’t core to getting things done. The result is a more elegant experience that brings your content to the forefront.”

The back-to-basics approach comes after a large portion of the user base rejected the Skype 8 desktop update, which attempted to revert of a more mobile-like experience. Last month the company announced it was keeping Skype Classic (Skype 7) alive for the time being in order to satisfy the concerns of those users seeking the simple stuff.

Are you still a loyal Skype user? Drop us a line @TrustedReviews on Twitter.

Why trust our journalism?

Founded in 2004, Trusted Reviews exists to give our readers thorough, unbiased and independent advice on what to buy.

Today, we have 9 million users a month around the world, and assess more than 1,000 products a year.

author icon

Editorial independence

Editorial independence means being able to give an unbiased verdict about a product or company, with the avoidance of conflicts of interest. To ensure this is possible, every member of the editorial staff follows a clear code of conduct.

author icon

Professional conduct

We also expect our journalists to follow clear ethical standards in their work. Our staff members must strive for honesty and accuracy in everything they do. We follow the IPSO Editors’ code of practice to underpin these standards.