Microsoft has become one of the biggest players in the console gaming market with its Xbox 360 system and real-time online gaming platform Xbox Live. The global corporation raised its profile even higher with the recent release of the Kinect for Xbox 360, a grounding breaking peripheral device that has already shipped over 10 million units in less than a year. Many observers on the tech scene see Microsoft integrating Skype with its Xbox products as a no-brainer. This is definitely believable when considering how the company appears to be on a mission to make itself a pioneer in yet another “next generation” gaming revolution.
Voice to Office
Being the company’s claim to fame, it is also very possible that Microsoft will deeply embed the Skype application into the Windows experience. While a merger that sees some sort of voice functionality bundled alongside native desktop applications wouldn’t be all that shocking, Office, the company’s top selling productivity software suite, would be the more likely option. Skype technology could be very useful in applications such as Outlook and PowerPoint. According to a representative from Microsoft, we could be getting our first taste of the integration with the next version of Office.
A Bigger and Better Mobile Platform
One of the most interesting things to watch from the acquisition will be whether or not Microsoft decides to integrate Skype with its iPhone and Android competitor Windows Phone. Right now, Microsoft is struggling to compete as its existing mobile platform is missing some key ingredients consumers are looking for, including video chat capabilities, which just happens to be one of Skype’s specialities. Not only could this help the company better compete in the smartphone market, but also immediately put it at the top of the VoIP market, which just happens to include regular rivals Apple (FaceTime) and Google (GoogleVoice). With the right moves, Microsoft stands to make out swell with this huge acquisition.
Like we said, nothing is official, but more tidbits are being leaked about what Microsoft is most likely to do with Skype. As time goes on, we should be able to piece more of the puzzle together. While the acquisition has taken place, the deal is not expected to finalized until the end of the year. This gives us more than enough time to speculate, investigate, and find out how the Skype brand will operate under the Microsoft banner.