Microsoft has announced it will be ending support for Skype for TV app post-June 1. The company justified its decision claiming the move is in tune with the current trend where mobile or tablet devices have taken precedence over TVs for video calling functionality.
Microsoft had earlier been pushing adoption of Skype on TVs citing the size advantage that it offered. Skype was first launched on TVs back in 2010 when the company would take pride in proclaiming it be the best mode of communicating with family and friends in the living room.
Further, running Skype on a TV also meant there is no ‘out-of-the-shot moment to miss as there are plenty of screens real estate at disposal. Family members also won’t have to huddle around the cramped computer display as well.
However, a few years down the line and none of the above advantages hold good any longer. The availability of a few other mobile video chatting apps too has played their part as well. For instance, there is Apple’s FaceTime or Facebook Messenger that have grown immensely popular among the mobile-toting crowd. Slack too has confirmed they are planning to introduce video calling to its chat service, primarily focussed on the business community.
Likewise, Microsoft has stated it will be channeling its resources towards improving Skype experience on mobiles and tablet devices.
Skype initially came pre-installed on a number of smart TVs which included those from Samsung and LG. The app was available to download on several other models as well which included Sony, Panasonic, Toshiba and Sharp. The TV either required having an integrated camera or one that could be attached to it.
Will I be able to use Skype for TV after June 2016?
Samsung has already said that it will stop offering Skype starting June 2. In addition, Microsoft said it will be up to individual TV makers to decide whether to continue offering Skype on their sets. The company though hasn’t stated till when it will remain to exist in an unsupported state or if it plans to bring the curtain down on Skype for TV soon thereafter.