A Look at Skype v8: No, Just No

The new Skype Android app, version 8, is an absolutely horrendous update.

Yes, there is a reason why it is not here.

I had to recently make the switch to using Skype for some time because of a friend of mine. First of all, I live in India, so I search for the Skype app on the Play Store, but the first surprise strikes here: the app has been unlisted for quite a few countries. I had to sideload the app from APKMirror to actually get it to install.

Login to Skype? Uh, sure!

Skype has become overly complicated and tries to do too many things at once, thus sacrificing performance and usability in the process. In fact, Skype makes Telegram look like alien technology from the future.

What profile picture? What gallery?

The UI is slow with a lot of wasted space. It is not conducive to multitasking at all (when app switching it reloads the interface, losing any messages that haven’t been sent yet). You can’t go “invisible,” meaning people you do not want to be able to see you are online can see you unless you go to “Do Not Disturb,” in which case no one can contact you. It’s infantile in its appearance, so I could see kids and teens liking it, but as an adult, I could not dislike it more. I tried sending a picture to a friend and it never showed up on his Skype. In fact, I had to actually call a person up to ask if they were online! This, in my opinion, is atrocious. I asked Skype to not look up my phone book, or upload it to Microsoft, but it did it anyway!

The UI is bland and lacks any clear indication of who is online without clicking on their name. Even just the generic coloring would help. The wavy graphics everywhere don’t make sense to me, but then again you could call me old. This is down to personal preference I believe.

The settings screen took me literally like 10 minutes to find. Seriously, they could have just removed settings altogether if they wanted to bury it this deep in the app.

Notifications do not work properly. I miss calls, texts, images, all the time with the latest version. The app seems to have some sort of capping at 30 fps, or it is just horribly coded. It crashed a bunch of times for me already, and this is just bad UX altogether.

There seems to be a steep learning curve and I personally don’t think I will ever be using it. You can check it out for yourself in the source link below. I suggest reading some of the reviews on the Play Store.

Source: Play Store, APKMirror