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Image via Microsoft
Image via Microsoft

Sending a message on the popular communications tool Slack sometimes isn’t really enough to convey the full meaning of the message.

Sometimes, you just need to talk face to face. And if that other face is on the other side of the world (or the other side of the office), you now don’t need to leave Slack to start the conversation.

Microsoft announced today that Skype integrates with Slack. To enable the Slack integration, you just need to hit the “Add to Slack” button on this page. Then, users can type “/slack” into any channel to start a group call that anyone can join.

Users don’t need an account to get in on the call.

The integration relies on Skype’s recently introduced browser-based Skype for Web, which currently requires a plugin to use. But once that’s set up, Skype calls are pretty seamless. It takes a second for the Skype bot to create the call, and then anyone in the channel can join in on the conversation. It even works in direct messages, letting you quickly create a one-on-one call.

Slack has quickly risen to become one of the most popular messaging clients among many tech-savvy users, creeping into territory Skype would like to hold down with its own instant messaging service.

Skype has added a few improvements to its chat system in the last year, creating a share with Skype button and adding “Moji” to its text-based chat platform. And Skype’s real-time translation service is unmatched anywhere on the web right now. But this move to integrate with Slack shows that Microsoft realizes it may not be the place many people turn to for text-based conversations.

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