Microsoft today launched its Skype for Business app for Android out of preview. You can now download the new app directly from Google Play — Android users with Lync 2013 will be automatically updated to the Skype for Business app based on their device settings.

Skype for Business arrived in April and got a dedicated Windows Phone app back in July. Its Android and iOS counterparts debuted in preview in August, with the iOS version launching out of preview in October and Microsoft promising to do the same for Android “later this calendar year.” The company has now delivered, with just two weeks to spare.

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The general availability of the Android app means the following features are now available to Google users:

  • Tailored for on-the-go scenarios: A new dashboard with the contact search bar, upcoming meetings, and most recent conversations. Full-screen video as well as larger call-control buttons to mute and add participants to a meeting have also been added.
  • Better contact management: The contact search bar lets you search your Global Address List by name, email, or even a phone number. You can also search for contacts within your Skype for Business groups.
  • Additional authentication and security options: The app now supports modern authentication, which is utilized by other Office clients and is based on access tokens, meaning users’ credentials are not stored on their devices.

Modern authentication also means IT admins can configure multifactor authentication for users of the Skype for Business Android app. This forces users to acknowledge a phone call, text message, or app notification on their device in addition to correctly entering their user name and password.

With Skype for Business available on Android, iOS, and Windows Phone, Microsoft has finally brought its Lync successor to the mobile business user. The company of course wants to build Skype into all its products and services: First it was Office 365, the business mobile apps, and next up is Windows 10.


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