Avid Skype users have been asking Microsoft to implement free group chat for quite some time, and now the company has finally done so. While group chat has been free for a while from Skype competitors like Google Hangouts, free group chat is finally rolling out for Skype on Windows, Mac and Xbox One.
The no-cost group chat will initially come to the aforementioned platforms, but according to Skype's Phillip Snalune in a blog post regarding the announcement, "in the future," Skype will "be enabling group video calling for all our users across more platforms – at no cost."
Over the last few years Skype has only offered group chat as part of its Premium service for Windows desktop, Mac and more recently on Xbox One. The Premium subscription costs $8.99 per month and comes along with a few extra goodies. A single Day Pass to access Skype group chat and other features costs $5 by itself.
While the company does say more platforms are coming, there are two glaring omissions from today's announcement with Android and iOS. Much of the hype and interest with group chat comes with cross platform support, something Skype has struggled with slightly in the past. This move puts Skype in a much more competitive position, but Hangouts is already free across just about every platform, making iOS and Android support an ever important future addition to the service's free group chat initiatives.