It’s a good time to be a Skype user – several cutting edge improvements are on the way. One of these improvements is “advanced audio processing technology.” That might seem like a mouthful, but it’s actually pretty simple.

With this new improvement found in the latest version of Skype, you’ll be able to have high quality audio no matter what kind of noise environment you’re in – an airport, train station, shopping mall, rock show or concert hall.

Our work with Nokia Lumia phones, for example, shows how Skype is benefitting from advanced audio processing technology on these devices.

“Audio signal processing over mobile devices is getting more sophisticated all the time. We can therefore leverage the audio capabilities that have been optimized for a specific device’s acoustics,” notes Sriram Srinivasan, Senior Program Manager, Audio Digital Signal Processing. “Several Lumia phones, for example, have multiple microphones, and what we do is work with the Lumia team to make sure those devices’ capabilities are perfectly aligned with what we want Skype to do.” Sriram gave a very common example – what happens when you want to make a video call with your Lumia in a noisy place like an airport? “When you’re activating the front facing camera, signals from all the microphones are combined using Lumia’s smart signal processing technology to zoom in to your voice and cancel everything else.”

But, says Sriram, sometimes you want to use your rear camera and pick up even more audio information. “What if you’re at your child’s piano recital, and you want to show grandma the child playing the piano while providing narration? Switch to the rear camera, and the microphones will now provide relevant audio from more sources.”

Advanced audio processing technology is just one of the many updates we’re currently working on. Ultimately, Karlheinz Wurm, Partner Product Manager for Skype Real-time communications says that, the fast moving world we live in demands that we update all our software on a constant basis.

“We don’t live in a world where we can release software on a two year plan anymore. The market changes too quickly and we need to be able to respond to situations in an agile way. An example is iOS8 – we know it’s coming, and we need to make sure that Skype works perfectly on it as soon as possible. So that means we can develop long term plans, but we need to release software on an extremely frequent basis in smaller chunks. This is a mobile-first, cloud-first world; it is becoming the industry standard to release updates with this frequency, and to ask users to maintain the most updated versions of software. But the benefits are significant – look at the work we’re doing with Nokia Lumia phones – and there will be further improvements to come.”

If you don’t have the latest version of Skype today, don’t miss out. You can download the latest version of Skype for desktop, mobile phone, or tablet, and take advantage of all the call quality improvements described above. It’s important to us that you have the best video and audio experience possible on Skype, and our team is working very hard to make that happen as seamlessly and smoothly as possible.