Microsoft last year updated Skype for iOS and Android to a new interface designed for simplicity. The firm has now brought this upgrade to the Windows desktop, and just like with the mobile updates, the firm has drawn a flurry of criticism from Skype power-users.
“Designers shouldn’t compromise the desktop client look and feel to deal with the limitations of a phone. Desktop people want a desktop experience. Slower unintuitive interfaces with less[sic] features is not the way forward. Flat design is a plague on the industry and it needs to die,” one user commented.
“I hate 8.x. There is so much wrong compared to 7.x. There is no point in downloading 7.x anyway, Sept 1 it stops working,” said another subscriber on the r/Skype subreddit.
The head-moderator chimed in to agree, noting that “As the lead mod of this subreddit let me just say. Yup. Exactly. Skype is dead unless you are at a business forced into using it by the corporate overlords.”
On the one hand, it’s easy to understand why these power-users are irritated by the change. Skype is genuinely less feature-filled than it used to be before, and for users who sued to rely on one niche feature or the other, the new Skype feels like a step down in a long list of step downs.
On the other hand, Microsoft might be trying to appeal to a new cohort of Skype users who found the old app too complex and prefer something newer and more modern.
Microsoft sees this Skype as their future, and only time can tell jus how wrong — or right — they are.