Microsoft has released the new Skype for Web, letting users chat with their contacts without the need for installing a desktop client.
And while this is possible using nothing more than the browser, the new version of the service comes with some unexpected limitations.
First and foremost, Microsoft says that you must be running Windows 10 or macOS 10.12 or higher to be able to connect to Skype for Web, which means that Linux isn’t officially supported.
Furthermore, the only browsers that are compatible with the new Skype for Web are Google Chrome and Microsoft Edge, so you won’t be able to use Mozilla Firefox to chat in the browser.
Obviously, there are ways to get around these limitations, and changing the user agent in the browser is the easiest of them all, but by the looks of things, Microsoft’s transition to the Chromium engine means Firefox users might be left behind when it comes to improvements they get on Microsoft services.
New features in Skype for Web
On the other hand, Microsoft highlights several new features coming to Skype for Web, including HD video calling, call recording, a notifications panel, and a chat media gallery.
Microsoft is also making another step towards killing the classic Skype, as the company introduced a new MSI installer for Skype desktop.
“Today we are releasing the updated MSI distributable for Skype (version 8) for Windows desktop, which replaces the existing MSI distributable of Skype (version 7) for Windows desktop. If you are an IT administrator, simply download the new MSI file to start distributing the latest version of Skype to your organization via the distribution software of your choice,” the company says.
If you want to try out Skype for Web, it’s enough to point your browsers to web.skype.com, but Linux and Firefox users also need to change the user agent to be able to connect to the service.