Microsoft announced on Monday (April 28, 2014) that Skype would be totally free with no expiration date for users of Windows Desktop, Mac and Xbox One. Other platforms like Windows RT or Windows Phone and Android devices will also soon have this update available on their devices as well. Though there is no time-frame as to when this would be available on other devices, but once it happens, it will be free for them as well.
Earlier, Skype group video calling was a part of the Premium Skype account and cost USD 9.99 per month. The features of premium support included group screen sharing, unlimited calls to a particular region, etc.
Another important aspect to keep in mind is that Google Hangout is considered as a major rival for Skype and for it has been offering free video chats for quite some time. Besides, it also hosts “On Air” Events with important personalities in order to boost its popularity. Also, Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp and Yahoo Messenger offers stiff competition to Skype, which can be a prominent reason for this decision of Microsoft.
So now whether you want to catch up with your friend staying in another country or collaborate with your employees, it is now much easier and cost-effective to do it through Skype!