Skype for Outlook.com launches in the UK today, US to follow soon

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Microsoft’s $8.5 billion purchase of Skype is slowly starting to take shape. The next step for integration into Microsoft’s services is here — and now you can make Skype video calls straight from your Outlook.com inbox.

The company officially announced that they are rolling out a preview version of Skype for Outlook.com, starting today with the UK. In the coming weeks, users in the US should get this functionality and the company hopes that in a couple of months, Skype will be available from every Outlook.com inbox.

To get Skype working on your Outlook.com, you’ll need to download a plugin that’s available for Internet Explorer, Chrome and Firefox. After that, all that’s left is for you to connect your Skype account to Outlook.com using your Microsoft account. If you’d like slightly more visual instructions on how to use Skype on Outlook.com, Microsoft has conveniently provided this little walkthrough video:

Skype for Outlook.com will be available worldwide this Summer. What do you think of Skype for Outlook.com? Let us know in the comments!

[via Skype]

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4 comments

  1. Louis

    [@Enrique]

    Enrique, yes, I just found out that good old Microsoft had apparently deleted my hotmail account, which I had for many years, together with my whole database of emails :-(

    Just says ::”No such account exist” when I try to log into the new Outlook.com account page.

    Very poor form on their part !

    It seems like it happened to a lot of people, and their standard reply seems to be something like “tough luck, we can’t do anything about it”.

    But I may open a new one, just to see how well this will work.

  2. Enrique
    Author/Staff

    [@Louis] Hey Louis! Thanks for reading :) Actually, Microsoft announced just recently that everyone has been moved over to the new Outlook.com interface.

    I think Microsoft also rolled out the ability to merge your Microsoft ID and Skype ID sometime ago, or use your Microsoft ID to sign into Skype, before this Outlook.com functionality was even announced. So my impression is that this is indeed the same technology that’s been powering Skype.

  3. Louis

    Hi Enrique,

    thanks for an informative article — this is the first time I’ve even taken notice of adding an outlook.com email adddress to my existing ones, but I just checked and it seems all hotmail accounts will in the near future automatically be upgraded (?) to outlook.com.

    However, I’ve a question :

    I may be wrong on this, but isn’t the underlying system of Skype one that is powered by a peer-to-peer network, much like the basis on which the ‘old’ filesharing sites like KaZaa, LimeWire, Morpheus etc used to work ?

    If so, will this new ability in Outlook.com in actual fact be using the Skype system itself, or perhaps be based not on the Skype userbase (since you apparently don’t need to be an existing Skype registered user) —

    therefore it may instead be based on the Outlook.com userbase , and therefore not be a ‘real’ Skype call, but just one dressed up to appear as being one ?

    Thus being nothing but a glorified Hotmail / Outlook.com chat function with video added, but appearing to look like a Skype call ?