Skype has finally come to the Windows Phone platform–and it’s wearing a fresh coat of Metro UI paint. It took longer than I expected for Microsoft to get Skype onto Windows Phone, and the current form and function is not as integrated as I had hoped for. But, I guess they have to start somewhere.
Tony Cripps, principal analyst at Ovum believes that Skype fills one of the obvious application gaps on Microsoft’s smartphone platform, but that this first beta represents a baby step on the path to a larger vision.
“At least in its initial guise, Skype for Windows Phone offers a fairly typical Skype experience on smartphones running as a standalone application. We expect this to change in future iterations with Skype becoming a more pervasive part of the Windows Phone software platform and experience, with its functionality integrated tightly with applications and services across the phone increasing its utility.
“Moreover, this is an important step in Microsoft’s strategy to make Skype a ubiquitous – and unavoidable – part of its product portfolio, integrated wherever it makes sense to do so. A pervasive Skype has much greater potential to disrupt existing models of communication than one that is dependent on users proactively choosing to install it.
“In this capacity it could begin to act as a social “glue” helping to drive usage of the service and furthering sales of Skype-enabled Microsoft products considerably in future. It could eventually help blur the lines between business users and consumers with Skype increasingly seen as simply a convenient tool to communication available anywhere.”