premium-page-gvcIn a move likely to be welcomed by many of its users, Skype is making group video calls free, no longer requiring a paid account for the feature.

The announcement this morning brings Microsoft’s video calling service on par with rivals such as Google, which offers group video calls for free through its Hangouts service.

Group video calls on Skype are available on Windows, Mac and Xbox One. In the past, at least one person involved in the call needed to have a Skype Premium account to enable the group video calling feature. Skype says it will enable free group video calls on additional platforms in the future, also at no cost.

Microsoft acquired Skype for $8.5 billion in 2011.

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