Skype took its Windows Phone app out of beta this weekend, releasing a 1.0 version with updates including video calling in portrait mode and new features for adding and managing Skype friends. The official release comes two months after the company came out with the beta of the app.
Here’s the bigger question: When are we going to see Skype on Xbox Live?
Microsoft, which acquired Skype last year, hasn’t revealed those plans officially. But newly surfaced job postings make it clear that they’re working on it. According to the job posts, the company is “building the next generations of our products and technology” in London and is looking for engineers to “contribute to the development of our experiences on Xbox.”
As noted by the Verge, the lack of reference to Xbox 360 could be notable, suggesting that the technology may be coming for the current console’s successor, but that’s just speculation.
While the Skype app on Windows Phone is important, and a way for Microsoft to bring its mobile platform up to par with its rivals, the Skype service for Xbox has much larger implications, bringing the service into the living room in a bigger way.
Although Microsoft already offers a video chat feature for Kinect, that service doesn’t have the critical mass that Skype does. The addition of Skype to the Xbox, whenever it happens, could be the first place where we see Microsoft’s $8.5 billion acquisition of the company start to pay off.