Zoom may be the darling of the video conferencing world right now, but Skype has still seen a massive increase in usage during the coronavirus pandemic, with the service now having more than 40 million daily active users.
In recent years, Skype appears to have lost favour with its parent company, with it choosing to concentrate on Microsoft Teams being its communications app of choice, despite acquiring Skype back in 2011 for $8.5 billion. That doesn’t mean that users aren’t flocking to Skype to stay in contact with loved ones during the Covid-19 outbreak, as Microsoft notes it has seen a 70% spike in usage in recent months.
Microsoft has been criticised for their management of Skype, with some consumers complaining about the frequent UI changes that have plagued the service since it was acquired. However, the video calling service remains popular with businesses and consumers alike, and its daily active user figure of 40 million isn’t that far below the 44 million people using Microsoft Teams.
Unfortunately, Skype’s days appear to be numbered, with Microsoft working on a consumer version of Teams that will likely further eat into Skype’s user base. The app isn’t expected to launch until later on in the summer, hopefully after the worst of the coronavirus pandemic has passed, but it’s hard to think of Microsoft wanting to keep Skype around rather than transition everyone to Teams.
That being said, Microsoft currently wants to ensure it remains competitive with Zoom, which has become the go-to app of consumers looking to stay connected with their friends and businesses looking for a video conferencing solution. To that end, the company has rolled out a new feature in Skype called Meet Now. Similar to Zoom, Meet Now lets users create video meetings in as little as three clicks for free, no signups or downloads required.