Microsoft closes Skype acquisition

Microsoft closes Skype acquisition
Microsoft has announced that it has finalized its $8.5 billion Skype acquisition. Skype will now be integrated as a separate business unit withing Microsoft. The future is expected to bring Skype on all levels in various Microsoft products.

“By bringing together the best of Microsoft and the best of Skype, we are committed to empowering consumers and businesses around the globe to connect in new ways,” Skype CEO Tony Bates said in a statement.“Together, we will be able to accelerate Skype’s goal to reach 1 billion users daily.”

The deal has passed approval in the States and the European Union but it’s still up for review in some countries like Russia, Ukraine, Serbia and Taiwan. There, it will be closed after the review process is over.

What are the possibilities ahead? The most obvious place for Skype integration are, of course, Microsoft’s Lync and the Windows Phone platform. But we shouldn’t rule out Outlook and even Xbox Live out of the picture in the long term. There's no fixed timeline, though, and analysts point out that Lync integration for once could take up to two years as the code has to undergo significant changes.

When it comes to Windows Phone, the integration should happen much quicker as Skype is already on Android and iOS. It could and probably would get a deeper level support, aiming to rival Apple's FaceTime. The biggest hurdle to this are carriers, which have understandably resisted the integration of a VoIP client in a smartphone.

Currently users won't likely see any major differences after the acquisition, but it's expected that Skype gets a Metro UI redesign once it gets baked in Windows Phone. 

source: Microsoft 


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