Timeline of Skype

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This is a timeline of Skype, a telecommunications application software product that specializes in providing video chat and voice calls between computers, tablets, mobile devices, the Xbox One console, and smartwatches via the Internet and to regular telephones. Skype is a division of Microsoft Corporation.

Big picture

Time period Development summary More details
2003–2005 First years Skype is founded, early introducing audio conference calling.
2005–2011 eBay era In 2005 Skype is sold to eBay for US$2.6 billion.[1] In 2006 video calling service is born, with Skype among the pioneering platforms.[2] As of 2006, the service is still a PC-only phenomenon.[3] In 2007 Skype generated $382 million in revenues and claimed to have 276 million users.[4] However, by 2008 eBay became increasingly disenchanted with their investment on Skype, losing millions of dollars.[5] By 2009, 70% of Skype is sold to a consortium of Silver Lake Partners, Canada Pension Plan Investment Board, Andreessen Horowitz, and Joltid (owned by the original Skype founders).[1] In 2010 Skype goes mobile.[5] The service launches a video calling app for the iPhone, iPad, and iPod Touch so their owners can make free Skype-to-Skype videocalls wherever they are.[1]
2011< Microsoft era In 2011 Skype is acquired by Microsoft for US$8.5 billion.[1] By 2012 Microsoft's (NASDAQ:MSFT) Skype unit grows its international traffic by 44 percent in the year, more than twice the volume growth achieved by all the phone companies in the world combined.[6] The same year Microsoft announced that Skype would become the main Microsoft messaging service, eliminating its proprietary Messenger service.[5] In 2013 Skype carried over 214 billion minutes of international calls. Traffic generated by the service also increased to a 40% of the whole international telecom market size.[7] The 54 billion minutes of international traffic added by Skype represents 50 per cent more than the combined international volume of growth of every telephone company in the world during the year.[1] In 2013 Skype announced having reached 280 million active monthly users who spent a total of more than 2 billion minutes per day on Skype, and more than 50 million of its users were online at the same time.[8] In 2014 Skype launches "Skype Translator" available in four spoken languages, i.e. English, Spanish, Italian and Mandarin, and 50 distant messaging (IM) languages.[9] Skype Translator makes it easier for users to connect with people around the world on Skype no matter where they are.[10] in 2014, the service introduces upgrades to their mobile and tablet applications to support either HD video resolutions or "quarter-HD" video (960x540).[11] By 2015, Skype had some serious competitors, with Google Hangouts and FaceTime among them.[12] Other important events include Microsoft Lync server being replaced by the Skype for Business server.[13] In 2016 Skype's mobile app reached 1 billion downloads worldwide.[14] A year later, Skype establishes itself as the premier video voice messaging platform. The instant messaging platform, file sharing and screen sharing capabilities are extremely popular.[5] In 2017 Skype crossed a major milestone—surpassing one billion downloads from the Google Play Store.[15]

Full timeline

Year Month and date Event type Details
2002 January 1 Funding Skype raises US$ 250,000.[16]
2003 August Funding Skype announces second funding round.[16]
2003 August Creation Skype is founded by Estonian developers Zahti Heinla, Priit Kasesalu and Jaan Tallinn, Swedish developer Niklas Zennström and Danish developer Janus Friis. The foremost voice–over–IP service is launched in August. Skype stands for "Sky Peer to Peer".[17][5][18]
2004 February Service Skype introduces audio conference calling.[19]
2004 March 1 Funding Skype receives US$ 18.8 million in funding.[16]
2004 August Expansion First public release of Skype for Mac.[19]
2004 October Growth 1 million concurrent users, and 2 billion free Skype-to-Skype minutes are reported.[19]
2005 February Expansion Skype launches for Linux.[19]
2005 Launch Skype 2.0 is released for the first time in beta version.[20]
2005 June Growth Skype reaches 10 million Skype-to-Skype calls.[19]
2005 September Acquisition eBay buys Skype for US$ 2.5 billion. The founders of Skype would then concentrate on Joost, a streaming video service.[20][18][19]
2006 January Expansion Skype video calling launches on Windows.[19]
2006 February Skype announces 10-way conference calling on PCs.[19]
2006 February 6 Investment Skype announces investment in Fon.[16]
2006 April 11 Acquisition Skype acquires Sonorit.[16]
2006 May Skypecasts are first introduced as a service that can create voice conversations with up to one hundred participants.[20][5]
2006 May SMS sending feature becomes available on Windows.[19]
2006 Service Skype introduces Voice Conferencing, a service that allows customers to hold video conference calls with other Skype users.[17]
2006 December Service Skype introduces first calling subscriptions.[19]
2007 February 20 Investment Skype announces investment in Trial Pay.[16]
2007 March Growth Skype reaches half a billion downloads.[19]
2007 June Service Skype To Go is launched as a pay-as-you-go option that allows users to call people all over the world for the price of a local call by giving them a local number to call.[19]
2007 October Acquisition eBay takes a $1.4 billion writedown on Skype.[21]
2007 October Service 3 Skypephone is introduced with 3, a mobile UK carrier.[19]
2007 October High-quality video is introduced with Logitech.[19]
2008 February Growth Skype reaches 100 billion minutes of Skype to Skype calls.[19]
2008 February Team Josh Silverman is appointed Skype's CEO.[19]
2008 September Growth Skype celebrates 1 billion downloads.[19]
2008 September Shutdown Skype closes Skypecasts permanently for not maintaining the expected minimun quality standard.[20][5]
2008 Early Crisis Constant managerial changes resulting in tension between eBay and Skype's respective management teams culminate with the departure of Skype's founders.[20]
2008 February Team Josh Silverman becomes Skype's CEO and immediately sets about concentrating on video calls, after eliminating previously popular programs like Skype Find and Skypecast.[5]
2008 Early Expansion Skype Voice Conferencing service becomes available for Linux OS.[17]
2008 April Service Skype releases Mobile Skype, compatible with around 50 different phones, a figure that would increase as programming and technology continue to sync.[17]
2008 September eBay cites that Skype has failed to maintain the expected minimum quality standard.
2009 March Expansion Skype launches for iPhone.[19]
2009 Upgrade Skype 4.1 includes the possibility of screen sharing, and joins up with Boingo to offer –with a surcharge, wireless internet access through their access points. The service would later be renamed to Skype ans Skype Wi-Fi Access.[20]
2009 April eBay announces a plan to spin off of Skype.[17]
2009 May Skype makes a grand appearance on The Oprah Winfrey Show “Where the Skype Are You?”.[19]
2009 July Service Skype launches its WiFi and screen sharing features.[19]
2009 August Elevation Partners invests.[18]
2009 September eBay sells 65 percent of Skype for to a group led by private equity firm Silver Lake and including Andreessen Horowitz, at a transaction cost of US$ 2 billion. The deal would put a value on Skype at roughly US$3 billion.[21][19]
2009 October 14 Investment Skype announces investment in Rdio.[16]
2009 November 19 Funding Skype receives US$ 50 million in its fourth funding round.[16]
2009 Service Skype for Business (SIP) is released.[17]
2010 January Partnership Skype on your TV arrives in deals struck with Samsung and Panasonic.[19]
2010 February Upgrade Skype 4.0 is launched with full screen video calling.[19]
2010  ? Skype becomes ingrained in Windows, Mac and Linux.[5]
2010 March Expansion Skype Mobile on Verizon Wireless devices becomes available.[19]
2010 April Expansion Skype launches on the Apple iPad.[19]
2010 April 16 Funding Skype receives US$ 7,755,032 in its fifth funding round.[16]
2010 May Upghrade Skype 5.0 BETA is released.[17]
2010 May Expansion Skype for Apple's iPhone app is released.[17]
2010 August Skype files for the IPO.[18]
2010 September Service Skype launches group video calling for up to 10 people.[19]
2010 October Team Former Cisco exec Tony Bates is appointed as Skype's CEO, replacing Josh Silverman.[21][19][19]
2010 October Expansion Skype launches on Android devices.[19]
2010 November Skype starts delaying its IPO until 2011. But it also considers selling itself.[21]
2010 December Service Skype videocalls come to iPhone.[20][5]
2011 January 6 Acquisition Skype acquires mobile video startup Qik, for US$150 million.[22][23][24][16]
2011 May 10 Acquisition Microsoft announces acquisition of Skype for US$ 8.5 billion.[21][20][5][19]
2011 June Service Skype videocalls come to Android.[20][5]
2011 July Expansion Facebook introduces video calling powered by Skype.[19]
2011 August 21 Acquisition Skype acquires GroupMe.[16][19]
2011 October Acquisition Skype becomes part of Micosoft.[19]
2012 January Growth Skype provides 25% of the world’s international calling according to TeleGeography.[19]
2012 February Expansion Skype for Windows Phone becomes available.[19]
2012 March Expansion Skype service becomes pre-installed in Vizio smart TVs.[19]
2012 April Expansion Skype for String is launched.[19]
2012 May Comcast rolls out Skype on Xfinity.[19]
2012 June Growth Skype for Android surpasses 70 million downloads.[19]
2012 June Growth Skype surpasses 250 million connected users per month.[19]
2012 August Expansion Logitech TV Cam HD for Skype calls in the living room is launched.[19]
2012 November Microsoft announces that Skype would become the main Microsoft messaging service, eliminating its propietary Messenger service. This would launch a new surge in Skype usage.[5]
2013 January 10 Update Skype 6.1 for Windows adds Outlook integration.[25][26][27][28]
2013 February Statistics Skype reportedly makes up one-third of all international phone traffic.[6][29][30]
2013 March Legal Saudi Arabia threatens to block access to Skype and other Voice over IP (VoIP) communications platforms such as WhatsApp, and Viber unless these companies allow for government monitoring.[31][32] [33]
2013 April Statistics Skype reveals that its users already spend two billion minutes each day communicating with one another on its cross-platform calling and messaging service.[34][35][36]
2013 April Researchers from cybersecurity firm Kaspersky Lab identify a new malware spreading through Skype and turning the victim's computer into a Bitcoin miner. The victim's machine is then fully loaded to mine Bitcoins which is how the malware author makes money from the software.[37][38][39][40]
2013 May Microsoft announces Skype and Lync interoperability, meaning users can access their Lync contacts via Skype and vice versa, and then message them or place an audio call.[41][42][43]
2013 July Microsoft updates the Skype app for Android (version 4.0) into a faster and lighter app, redesigned with visual cues from Windows Phone 8.[44][45][46][47][48]
2013 August Skype confirms 3D video calls under development, some months after having posted an advert saying it wanted to find a way to create "body-doubles" for workers unable to travel to meetings.[49][50][51][52][53]
2013 August Microsoft merges Skype with Microsoft Outlook in the United States, United Kingdom, Germany, France, Canada, and Brazil.[54][55]
2013 November Skype terminates its previous joint-venture partnership in China and announces it will be operated in the country by Guangming Founder.[56][57][58]
2014 January Attack Hackers manage to breach Skype’s security and hack its Twitter account, Facebook page, and blog. The Syrian Electronic Army (SEA) claims responsability. Its message: "end spying on the public".[59][60][61][62][63][64]
2014 March 4 Microsoft launches Skype for Outlook.com worldwide. The global release comes alongside improved software support; PC users can now participate in HD video chats, while Mac users get a Safari plugin.[65][66][67][68][69][70]
2014 April Service Skype's group video calling (GVC) becomes available free of charge on Windows desktop, OS X and the Xbox One.[71][72][73][74]
2014 May Skype launches new real-time language translator.[75][76][77][78][79]
2014 ~ October 30 Update Skype 5.7 for iPhone update brings picture saving options and adds improved chat load times. Also, besides giving users the ability to view avatars for groups and other people, Skype 5.7 for iPhone also makes it easier for users to search their people list, with new filter options.[80][81][82][83]
2014 November Product Microsoft begins beta test of Skype for Web, a version of Skype that would work from a variety of browsers, and which ultimately would alleviate the need for Skype app or plug-in downloads.[84][85][86][87]
2014 November Rebrand Microsoft announces rebrand of Microsoft Lync as Skype for Business. The service would combine features of Lync and the consumer Skype software.[88][89][90][91]
2014 November Update Skype app update for Android brings picture-in-picture support to smartphones, allowing users to leave the app but still have a clear view of the person on the other end, whether they’re checking an email, browsing Facebook, or posting an update to Twitter.[92][93][94][95]
2015 ~ April 27 Competition Facebook adds video calling to Messenger, letting users chat face to face with their friends by tapping a single button inside the app. The free feature, which works over both LTE and Wi-Fi, competes with similar products including Skype, Google Hangouts, and FaceTime.[96][97][98][99][100]
2015 ~ May 5 Legal Microsoft loses in its battle with the United Kingdom broadcasting company Sky to use the name Skype, after the European court rules Skype’s name is too similar to Sky broadcaster. The judgement would prevent Microsoft from registering a trademark for Skype's name and bubble-design logo.[101][102][103][104][105]
2015 ~ August 11 Product Microsoft begins private beta of Skype for Business apps for iOS and Android.[106][107][108][109]
2015 September Update Skype introduces its "mojis", a series of little video clips that can be inserted into the user's chats.[110][111][112][113]
2015 ~ October 29 Integration Microsoft announces its plans to extend the social features of Office by integrating Skype into Office Online, allowing users to communicate by voice and video chat within Word, Excel, PowerPoint and OneNote Online documents, as well as in Outlook.com.[114][115][116][117]
2016 ~ March 2 Competition Slack adds voice and video chat to its service.[118][119][120][121]
2016 ~ July 5 Service Microsoft releases a free browser version of Skype for small businesses.[122][123][124]
2016 July Skype finalizes its move away from a peer-to-peer system to a cloud-based one, dropping support for Windows Phone and old versions of Android.[125][126][127][128]
2016 August Google launches Google Duo video chat app to compete with FaceTime and Skype.[129][130][131][132]
2017 November Skype iOS and Android apps are removed from the app store in China at the request of the Chinese government after local users complain they were suddenly unable to use Apple’s systems to pay for Skype services.[133][134]

Meta information on the timeline

How the timeline was built

The initial version of the timeline was written by User:Sebastian.

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What the timeline is still missing

Timeline update strategy

See also

External links


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