Skip to main content

Skype Wi-Fi is being retired, app will be delisted on March 31

skype build 2016 mobile smartphone ios android
Marcel de Grijs/123rf
Microsoft has announced plans to discontinue its Skype Wi-Fi service, which will go into effect at the end of next month. The application will be delisted, and the service itself will no longer function after March 31, 2017.

Skype Wi-Fi gave users the option to connect to one of over 2 million hot spots around the world, paying for their usage with Skype Credit. The app was available across Windows, MacOS, Linux, Android, and iOS, and served as a convenient alternative to signing up with different Wi-Fi providers for Skype users who were on the move.

Microsoft is apparently retiring Skype Wi-Fi so that it can focus its efforts on core Skype features, according to a report from MS Power User. It remains to be seen whether its hot spot functionality will be reinstated elsewhere in the Windows ecosystem.

The company already offers a very similar service in the form of Microsoft Wi-Fi, an app that’s exclusive to Windows 10 PCs. While there’s a slim chance that both services are set to be retired, it seems more likely that Skype Wi-Fi is being phased out in favor of Microsoft Wi-Fi.

This would allow Microsoft to retain its existing relationships with hot spot operators, while culling one of two very similar services. The fact that Microsoft Wi-Fi is branded with the company’s name rather than Windows suggests that the services could be offered to users on various devices, much like Skype Wi-Fi.

Skype Wi-Fi users with leftover Skype Credit will be able to use any remaining funds to make calls and send text messages using the standard Skype app. However, if they’re not interested in using their credit on anything other than internet access, they can also contact Skype customer service to get a full refund.

Editors' Recommendations

Brad Jones
Former Digital Trends Contributor
Brad is an English-born writer currently splitting his time between Edinburgh and Pennsylvania. You can find him on Twitter…
What is Li-Fi? A faster, more secure wireless internet is just around the corner
Li-Fi transmitters pictured.

Li-Fi technology has the potential to give us faster, more secure wireless internet access, even in busy environments where there is already heavy Wi-Fi coverage. It's not a replacement for Wi-Fi, but an augmenting technology that could work alongside it to offer an additional spectrum for devices to utilize, as well as a way to limit access to the network utilizing the very nature of this light-based technology.

Li-Fi has the potential to revolutionize not only the way we all get online, but it could even replace some of the mountains of cables that make up the backbone of the modern internet.
What is Li-Fi?
Li-Fi is short for Light Fidelity and is a communication system that utilizes light, rather than radio waves to transmit the data. A Li-Fi network uses infrared LED lamps to transmit and receive data, using modulations in the light intensity to create the digital signal which carries the information to and from various networked devices.

Read more
What is Wi-Fi 7: Everything you need to know about 802.11be
Checking a Wi-Fi router and internet connection on a phone.

Wi-Fi 7 is the latest evolution in the 802.11 IEEE standard of wireless networking, and it's the direct sequel to Wi-Fi 6 and Wi-Fi 6E. It's faster, offers improved support for a greater number of simultaneous connections, and will be more adaptable, to better maintain low-latency connections. It will be an excellent solution for streaming ultra-high-definition video to multiple devices simultaneously, and may find use in future wireless virtual reality and augmented reality headsets.

There aren't many Wi-Fi 7 devices or routers available just yet, but a soft launch has already begun in China, and that rollout will gather sped in the coming years. To get you ready for the next generation of Wi-Fi technology, here's everything you need to know about Wi-Fi 7.

Read more
These are the airports that actually have really fast public Wi-Fi
MacBook Air sitting on a table in an airport.

With the holiday travel season quickly approaching, there is expected to be an increased number of travelers at airports across the U.S., and therefore significantly more people attempting to connect to free airport Wi-Fi at the same time.

Stable connections for free Wi-Fi hot spots can be a hassle in any location, but airport travel offers a unique situation, where internet speed options can vary depending on whether they are free or paid, or a perk of another subscription service.

Read more