To date, Skype has not been the most mobile-optimized app, but that will all change in the next few weeks. That is because Microsoft announced it is rolling out a redesigned app for Android and iOS that will be much more mobile-friendly.
For example, Microsoft will simplify the app by including new one-tap access calling features, and the Calls tab, which is newly added, will let users make audio or video calls, as well as calls to mobile or landline phones using Skype credit.
The Calls tab replaces the “Call phones” tab, which didn’t make much sense considering it allowed users to call tablets, and other devices — not just phones. Microsoft says the change will let use users call any individual or group from the same place, which should simplify things a little.
The Calls tab is not the only change coming to the Skype app. The company is now killing off the voicemail feature of the app, a response to the fact that there has been a serious decline in traditional voicemail use. If you use voicemail a lot, do not worry — you can still enable voicemail through the Skype account portal, although you will not be able to check those voicemails on Skype for Android, according to a report from ZDNet. What the company really wants, however, is for you to start using voice messages instead of voicemail.
The updates to the app come at an interesting time — the Skype team has been moving away from its self-built infrastructure to Azure, which should give Skype better support on mobile for file sharing, video messaging, and group calling on a phone. That highlights the shift at Microsoft toward mobile — the company has been increasingly releasing apps from its Windows Phone platform to operating systems like Android and iOS in an attempt to try and disrupt the mobile world the same way the Windows Phone could not.