Microsoft announced on Tuesday the acquisition of Skype.
The deal was announced on Tuesday, valued at $8.5 billion cash.
Both Skype and Microsoft’s board of directors have approved the deal and Microsoft will create a new business division especially for Skype.
Skype CEO Tony Bates will assume the title of president of the Microsoft Skype Division, reporting directly to Ballmer.
Microsoft says Skype will support Microsoft devices like Xbox and Kinect, Windows Phone and a wide array of Windows devices, and Microsoft will connect Skype users with Lync, Outlook, Xbox Live and other communities. Microsoft will continue to invest in and support Skype clients on non-Microsoft platforms.
Skype currently has 170 million connected users and saw over 207 billion minutes of voice and video conversations in 2010 alone. Microsoft’s promise for Windows Phone, Xbox and Kinect Skype integration confirms that the company will look to use Skype broadly across its products.
Skype was originally founded in 2003 and acquired by eBay in September 2005.
My take – Great strategic move by the software giant. It need some really subtle execution to pull this off but the road map is a solid one. There just cant be any Sony Network type mess-ups.
Also I would bet my left arm that there will be Skype integration built into Windows 8.