Microsoft’s messaging and video conference service Skype keeps getting worse, and there’s plenty to hate about the latest Skype update.
Microsoft has received a lot of backlash for the latest round of changes to its popular messaging and video application. Users complained that the newest redesign leaves much to desire and functions more as an artistic update than one with any functionality. Even Microsoft admits its users aren’t happy with Skype right now.
For example, it’s very difficult to see who’s online and who’s not. You cannot share items easily to Skype like you can with WhatsApp and other programs. Not only can’t you share with ease and personalize your experience, but now Microsoft won’t let you pick your own Skype username! Instead of ‘yourname’ you are now ‘live:nm_478’ automatically generated for you — wait, what?!
In the past, Microsoft made it clear that Skype is a walking collection of data for law enforcement agencies and this confirms it all over again.
To further nail the coffin, Skype now no longer lets users select a username. The system automatically generates a username for you and encourages use of your email address and telephone number to connect with Skype. They also introduced social media features, burying Skype’s core features of easy direct communication in favor of a social media mash-up between Instagram, Facebook, Snapchat all crammed into the Skype app you once knew and loved.
Microsoft has plans to pre-install Skype on many new vehicles in the coming years. It’s clear to see that Skype wants to be a lot more than it really is. I feel like this is MS simply not getting it right. Remember MSN Search, and then Windows Live Search, now it’s Bing and it still hasn’t learned from its mistakes. What’s next?
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I’m not sure I’ll miss Skype moving forward. Most of my contact list contains people who already communicate with me on other platforms (iMessage, WhatsApp, etc.). It’s as if everyone else I know has gotten the message and left Skype last year, or the year before. Skype has been in a free-fall for many years and I don’t see their situation improving under Microsoft’s controls.