Earlier in January, Microsoft announced that it would bring a group chat feature to the Skype app on mobile devices over “the next few weeks,” but never locked down a specific launch window. Today, the popular video chatting app will begin to support group video calling, similar to its web counterpart, on iOS and Android (via Engadget).
The new feature will allow as many as 25 participants in a single Skype video chat, with 1080p video quality, and access to both front and back cameras. Much like the PC and Mac apps, the person talking will dynamically be rearranged to the center of the experience while everyone listening will be delegated to smaller tiles. The app will also let users pin someone in particular to the center tile to keep their face in a locked location even if they aren’t speaking.
With the update, Microsoft will make it easier to invite non-Skype users into calls as well, allowing a video chat group’s participants to invite anyone to the conversation by sending a link through a messaging app like iMessage, and bypassing the traditional need for their Microsoft account information.
Beginning first in the United States and Europe, the rollout for the mobile group chat feature is expected to be completed within a week. The company hopes that worldwide support will be finished sometime by the end of March.
Skype for iPhone [Direct Link] and Skype for iPad [Direct Link] are both available to download from the App Store for free.
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