Microsoft integrates Skype with Slack to simplify team video calls

If you can't beat 'em, join 'em

Slack may be the darling of the group communication market right now, but there's one thing it's missing: voice and video calling. Microsoft is aiming to patch that up with a new integration between Skype and the popular messaging service.

The imaginatively-named Skype integration for Slack creates a new command that lets people type "/skype" into a channel or private chat and have Microsoft's conferencing service automatically generate a link that will launch a call for participants in the conversation. Everyone in the channel will get a notification letting them know that there's a call going on.

Links generated with the integration can be launched with the Skype mobile and desktop apps, or opened on the desktop web with or without a Skype account. It's currently available in beta for any team that has an open integration slot in their Slack instance.

What's interesting about this move is that Microsoft already has a workplace communication product designed to get teams working together called Skype for Business (previously known as Lync). But Slack is a rising star in the workplace collaboration market, so it makes sense for Microsoft to try and link its products to a market leader in order to maintain their relevance.

It will be interesting to see what happens to the integration in the future. Last year, Slack acquired Screenhero to help the company build out future voice and video chat features for its product, though they haven't materialized yet.

The launch comes during a big week for Skype overall. On Monday, Microsoft announced free video conferencing for users of all of its mobile apps, to go along with the same capability on desktop. On Wednesday, an update to Outlook allowed users to create video conference links inside calendar events with a tap, and this integration adds another way for people to easily summon Skype.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags Microsoft

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Blair Hanley Frank

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Cool Tech

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Stocking Stuffer

SmartLens - Clip on Phone Camera Lens Set of 3

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Aysha Strobbe

Microsoft Office 365/HP Spectre x360

Microsoft Office continues to make a student’s life that little bit easier by offering reliable, easy to use, time-saving functionality, while continuing to develop new features that further enhance what is already a formidable collection of applications

Michael Hargreaves

Microsoft Office 365/Dell XPS 15 2-in-1

I’d recommend a Dell XPS 15 2-in-1 and the new Windows 10 to anyone who needs to get serious work done (before you kick back on your couch with your favourite Netflix show.)

Maryellen Rose George

Brother PT-P750W

It’s useful for office tasks as well as pragmatic labelling of equipment and storage – just don’t get too excited and label everything in sight!

Cathy Giles

Brother MFC-L8900CDW

The Brother MFC-L8900CDW is an absolute stand out. I struggle to fault it.

Luke Hill

MSI GT75 TITAN

I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?