Microsoft today announced that in the next few weeks it will roll out a preview of its Skype universal Windows app to people participating in the Windows Insider program.

The current Skype app will still work on PCs running Windows 10, but Microsoft will be gradually bringing the existing app and the new one together. The new version will bring over many of the existing features, including a contact list, an option for logging out, Moji and emoticon support, and a way to change your availability. It will also introduce new capabilities, like the ability to chat with people whether or not they use Skype, group chat, group voice and video calling, and a means to deal with notifications individually for every single chat.

“We’ve simplified the look and feel by removing duplicative and unnecessary menus to prevent confusion between them,” the Skype team wrote in a blog post. “The global menus are now in a new, single Settings menu, and you’ll see contextual menus appear in upcoming releases.”

With hundreds of millions of users, Skype is a big product for Microsoft, and it receives updates frequently. But with Windows 10, Microsoft introduced the notion of Universal Windows Platform apps that run on many types of devices, even smartphones and tablets. Now Microsoft is finally ready to make Skype universal.

This Skype universal Windows app preview will first be delivered for PCs, and later it will appear in preview for Windows 10 Mobile, according to the blog post.

To try out the new Skype universal Windows app in forthcoming Windows 10 builds, you need to be a Windows Insider. If you aren’t one yet, you can sign up here.

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Skype is a software application that allows users to make voice and video calls and chats over the Internet. Calls to other users within the Skype service are free, while calls to both tradi... All Skype news »

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