For all of its productivity superpowers, one feature Slack’s communication platform lacks is voice and video calling features. Now Microsoft is using Slack to help change that.
Microsoft introduced a new integration between Skype and Slack Thursday. The update allows Slack teams to initiate voice and video calls through Skype from within Slack threads.
Slack users can set up the feature, which is available now as a preview, by enabling the “add to Slack” button from Skype’s website and signing in with their Slack credentials.
Once set up, initiating a Skype call works just like other commands in Slack. Type “/skype” to set up a call others can join via link from within Slack’s mobile and desktop apps.
While likely not a game changing feature for Skype, the move is significant as Slack, valued at more than $1 billion, is one of the hottest startups in Silicon Valley. It’s not surprising that Microsoft, which has focused on enabling productivity since CEO Satya Nadella took over, would be paying extra close attention to the company.
On its part, Slack recently rolled out an App Directory where users can browse the more than 100 third-party apps that can work within the application.
The update also comes on the heels of several other notable additions to Skype. Microsoft also announced free group video calling and made its real-time translation tool available to all Windows users.
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