October 22, 2012 - 21:21 AMT
PanARMENIAN.Net - Skype has today, October 22 revealed its new version for Windows 8, heralding a "big step forward" for the video calling service on desktop, laptop and tablet devices, Digital Spy said.
Launching on October 26, the same day that Microsoft's new operating system officially launches, Skype for Windows 8 offers a "completely new" experience that is "designed to be always on, immersive, effortless and fun to use".
The now Microsoft-owned Skype has been developing for Windows since its first release, but the Windows 8 version more closely integrates the experience for the mobile world, and puts messages at the "heart" of the service.
The headline feature in Skype for Windows 8 is 'always on', meaning users can be reached via Skype at all times, whether on desptop, laptop or tablet.
The system runs in the background on the operating system, but without draining the battery of the device being used.
Users can receive voice or video calls and chats even when away in another app or using the desktop. Skype for Windows 8 will also notify them about new calls and instant messages that are waiting.
The Skype user interface has been decluttered, and then rejigged so that it is "as comfortable and easy to use with touch as it is with a keyboard and a mouse".
Away from the desktop view, Skype appears as a live tile on the Windows 8 touch interface. This will constantly update with new calls or messages.
The Skype app can be snapped side-by-side with other Windows 8 apps, so that the user can Skype while doing other things.
Recent chat messages and calls are displayed when Skype is launched, and a new modern dial pad makes it easier to call mobile phones or landlines.
An easy-view display shows how much Skype Credit users have remaining, along with any active subscriptions or recent calls.
The 'People' app is a cloud-connected address book for all contacts, and the most important people can be 'pinned' to the home screen for quick access.
"We are very excited about our first release of Skype for Windows 8 - and we hope you are too," said a Skype press release.