Home » Opensource News » Microsoft Acquired Skype for $8.5 Billion Future of Linux Client is in Darkness

Microsoft Acquired Skype for $8.5 Billion Future of Linux Client is in Darkness

Image representing Skype as depicted in CrunchBase
Image via CrunchBase


Microsoft acquired Skype – Online Video calling, VOIP client service- for a $8.5 Billion. This is the largest purchase for the company this year. The company is there for past 10 years and it is growing. Skype is regularly reffed as glitch free video and distortion free audio calling. Now Microsoft will integrate the facility for its windows 7 phones, Xbox, Kinect etc…

Currently Skype is with  600 million user accounts and  is one of the most popular cross-platform [Linux,windows,mac clients] desktop VoIP applications currently available. And ubuntu is announced that skype is available in ubuntu. The linux client is not getting any updates for past 5 years and the development is dead slow. But from now own MS will kill the client.

There are other alternatives available in Linux. Google released a programme for google talk to support video and audio in linux. Also Empathy and pidgin added google talk audio,video calling. Still the No1 quality client is skype, which is going to be distroyed with in one year. Also the future of skype client for android is in darkness.

Steve Ballmer’s team promises to continue “to invest in and support Skype clients on non-Microsoft platforms.” But as like a general strategy of MS they will kill other OS clients.

Skype for Linux has never been on active development with Skype team. The client for linux is lagging behind  features and support Windows, OS X, and even other mobile platforms. Still, Skype for Linux is a perfectly usable application, good support and integration with webcams and sound cards. Since the application is decidedly not open source, if Skype’s new owners decide to kill it, then it will certainly die. Such is the curse of proprietary software.

Skype will soon disappear from the iPhone, Android and Palm device, and possibly Blackberry.
Basically there are two possibilities; either nothing changes, or Microsoft will put the audio and video codecs into Messenger, turn Skype logins into Live IDs and then kill the product entirely.

So there other alternatives to skype in linux

Alternatives To Skype in Linux

Ekiga – Gnome Meeting

An open-source VoIP and video conferencing application for GNOME.


  • Ease of use with a modern Graphical User Interface.
  • Audio and Video free calls through the internet.
  • Free Instant Messaging through the internet with Presence support.
  • Audio (and video) calls to landlines and cell phones with support to the cheapest service providers.
  • High Definition Sound (wideband) and Video Quality up to DVD quality (high framerate, state of the art quality codec and frame size).
  • Free of choice of the service provider.
  • SMS to cell phones if the service provider supports it (like the default provider).
  • Standard Telephony features support like Call Hold, Call Transfer, Call Forwarding, DTMF.
  • Remote and Local Address Book support: Remote Address Book support with authentification using the standard LDAP technology, Local Address support in Gnome (Evolution).
  • Multi platform: Windows and GNU/Linux
  • Wide interoperability: Ekiga use the main deployed stantards for telephony protocols (SIP and H.323) and has been tested with a wide range of softphones, hardphones, PBX and service providers

This is a better solution for VOIP and SIP users. Looks like skype feels like skype and is great.

Google Talk

Google talk is now supporting video and auido calls from gmail chat interface in linux. You can download a small programme and install. It will integreats with gmail seamlessly. Otherwise you can use Empathy or Pidgin to connect with your google account lot of other accounts also.

http://sflphone.org/ (available in the ubuntu software center)
http://www.twinklephone.com/ (available in the ubuntu software center)
http://trac.qutecom.org/ (available in the ubuntu software center)
http://www.linphone.org/ (available in the ubuntu software center)

So tell your linux friends to switch to any of these from skype. May be the transition take a year to get an official Microskype applicaiton.


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