Skype introduced group video calling officially back in 2010, and offers support for up to 10 people, but the feature has been a premium service for paying customers since it exited beta. The group calling feature is now free, however, with Skype announcing general availability for everyone on Windows, Mac and Xbox One today.
The service going free makes a lot of sense – Skype has had a lot of competition lately, not the least of which from Google, which offers free group video chat through its Hangouts platform and has since launch. Keeping it behind a paywall made less and less sense, and with Microsoft fuelling the company and making a big push into getting its services onto more platforms, turning this into something everyone can enjoy free of charge is basically the only way to go.
The current support for group video chat extends to Windows, Mac and Xbox One as mentioned above, but Skype promises that it’s working on bringing group video communication to other additional platforms. Hopefully, that means we’ll see its mobile clients, including those for iOS, Android and Windows Phone get this feature soon, too.