Skype Preview for Windows Phone 8 has been bumped to version 2.1, gaining a few improvements and losing a major feature in the quest to ensure long-term stability for the app.
See, when the Skype Preview for Windows Phone 8 was released shortly after the platform’s first devices, it proved to be a canary in the coalmine for a larger issue with the OS. Phones were randomly rebooting and, when reset, were getting caught in a dreaded boot loop. The blame was put on Skype’s integration with WP8′s People Hub, so in version 2.1 Microsoft has temporarily disabled that functionality.
There are some new features, though:
- Updated chat keyboard with improved autocomplete/autocorrect is now available
- Buddies from Windows Live Messenger are labeled in the People list
- Added option to enable toast notifications for Windows Live Messenger buddies
Skype also promises “significantly improved the reliability of presence and chat and call notifications when the app is closed,” and “improved call reliability,” both of which are essential for the long-term success of a VoIP app.
In all, it’s a nice little upgrade, especially considering it’s not yet officially released. The Preview will continue for as long as necessary, according to Microsoft, and they’re working with the Windows Phone team to reinstate People Hub integration as soon as possible.
Download Skype Preview for Windows Phone 8.