Finally! The official Skype client is now available for Windows Phone 7. Ever since WP7 was released by Microsoft, people have been clamoring for the popular video and voice calling service to be brought to the platform. Although the guys over at Redmond had acquired Skype, the WP7 client remained elusive even after Mango was released. Even now, the app is in its beta testing phase, but no need to worry; it has all the core features that Skype is known for, and can easily be used as a replacement for the desktop client.
From the app’s welcome screen, you can sign in to your Skype account, or get a new one if you don’t already have one. Once you have logged in, you will be taken straight to the contacts page, where you can browse through your address book in alphabetical order. The contacts page sports alphabet tiles, so that you can move through the list just like you do in the People hub.
Skype for WP7 has its own notification system, which allows you to view all notifications from within the app by tapping the orange bubble in the top-right corner of the interface. To add a person to your contacts, there is the ‘+’ button in the bottom menu. You can view and edit your profile from within the app as well. The app uses a banner image much like the one added to the Facebook app with its recent update.
By tapping the all button shown on the contacts page, you can filter the list to show online or offline contacts exclusively. You have to tap the name of a contact to check whether he or she is online and available for chat. You can make video and voice calls and send instant messages to online contacts regardless of the platform they’re using, and with Skype credits, it is possible to use the app to make calls to any number in the world. Video calls can be made by tapping the camera button in the bottom bar, and even if your phone doesn’t have a front-facing camera on your device, it is possible to make video calls.
Skype could clearly use an update, but that’s understandable as the app is still in its beta phase. The app is available for free on the Windows Phone Marketplace. The link provided below will take you to its web Marketplace page.
Update: The app has now left its beta stage, and is available in its golden version, although there aren’t any noticeable changes in its working or features.