Microsoft has revealed that it will pull the plug on the Skype app for Window Phone 8 and Windows Phone 8.1 in early 2017.
In July, the company announced ending support for the Skype app for Windows Phone 8 and Windows Phone 8.1 starting in October. At the time, Microsoft did not disclose when the app will be completely killed off for these devices, merely revealing that it will implement changes "over the coming months."
On Aug. 12, in an update on the support page for Skype, Microsoft finally shared the deadline for the support being "killed off."
Come early 2017, nearly 80 percent of Windows Phone users — specifically those on Windows Phone and Windows Phone 8.1 — will be left in the lurch and forced to bid adieu to the Skype app when Microsoft obliterates support.
However, users of Windows Phone 8 and Windows Phone 8.1 powered devices will still be able to use Skype on their handsets, but with "limitations" through early 2017. This will also be applicable for users of Android 4.0.2 (or below) and Windows RT devices.
"While support will no longer be available from October 2016, the Skype app on Windows Phone 8 and Windows Phone 8.1 will continue to work (possibly with some limitations) until early 2017, when we finish moving Skype calling to the cloud," notes the support page.
Interestingly, the company has not shed any light on these "limitations" but one can take consolation in the fact that the app will continue to work for the next couple of months.
For those wondering why Microsoft is killing off support for Skype for select OSs, it is because the Redmond-based company is in the process of shifting the service (which is currently on P2P) to the cloud. The shift to a more modern infrastructure will allow the company to offer users an enhanced experience on all gadgets. Microsoft has revealed that the move will help it improve several Skype features such as quality of calls, video messaging, file sharing and the service's dependability.
The decision for this shift, as Tech Times has previously reported, was prompted by the fact that the P2P system had more issues, when compared to a cloud-based service.
While the news that Microsoft is ending support for older apps in "early 2017" will disappoint Skype users on the affected operating systems, one could take consolation in the fact that this time Windows could possibly overlap with the release of the company's rumored new hardware for smartphones.