“Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer today promised that the company would continue to develop and support Skype on rival platforms,” Gregg Keizer reports for Computerworld

“‘We will continue to invest in Skype on non-Microsoft client platforms,’ said Ballmer during a news conference announcing the company’s plan to buy chat and Internet phone software maker Skype for $8.5 billion,” Keizer reports. “Ballmer was adamant that the new Microsoft Skype division would not ditch the owners of iPhones, Android smartphones, Macs and other technologies.”

“‘A, I said it and I meant it,’ Ballmer said when a reporter asked for assurances that Skype would continue to be available for operating systems and devices not sold by Microsoft. ‘B, we’re one of the few companies with a track record of doing this,’ he added, citing Microsoft’s work on Mac OS X, for which it develops and sells a Mac-specific version of its Office suite,” Keizer reports.

MacDailyNews Take: For years Microsoft shat out Office for Mac versions with features intentionally removed in order to impede enterprise acceptance of Macs. They won’t stop offering Skype for Mac and iOS, they’ll just dumb those versions down in a vain attempt to get people to buy Windows Phone ’07 and Windows PCs, as if Mac and iOS users haven’t been using FaceTime and/or iChat for years. The good news for the remaining, dwindling Skype user base: Even Microsoft can’t fsck up the UI any worse than it is now.

Keizer reports, “Aapo Markkanen, a senior analyst at ABI Research, saw an opportunity for Microsoft to make good on its promise to support Skype on rival platforms while still emphasizing its own software. ‘I can see them doing a basic version for other platforms, with instant messaging and a calling feature on all handsets, but limit video and conferencing to Windows and Windows Phone,’ Markkanen said.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Skype? What is this “Skype” of which they speak?

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “Lynn W.” for the heads up.]

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