Today we’re excited to announce Skype for Mac 7.0 as well as the preview for the new Skype for Windows – both of which have been redesigned to make it easier to chat and share. If you’re already using Skype on mobile, you’ll recognize some of these changes. We’ve made the Skype experience consistent whether you are using your mobile device or your desktop PC. Now, you’ll see thumbnail pictures of your contacts, a new bubble-style chat design, and consistent icons for chat, video calls and audio calls.

Figure 1 The new chat experience on Skype for Windows desktop

Here are the things you should try when you download Skype for Mac 7.0 and the preview for the new Skype for Windows.

Improved chat experience

For the last year we’ve dedicated a lot of time to refresh the chat experience in Skype. We’ve brought more improvements to the desktop. Photos in your new Skype for Windows and Mac apps show up as you’d expect, beautifully displayed for your instant viewing. On Windows, there’s more spacing between contacts and chats, as well as message previews for unread chats, making it even easier to follow conversations.

Figure 2 Photos shared are displayed inline on Skype for Mac 7.0

We’ve made improvements to other types of file sharing, too. When you share file types like Office documents and PDFs, you’ll see file icons displayed to make it easier to visually scan for and find different files in your chat history.

Chat and call simultaneously with one click

People love multi-tasking. Many of you already exchange IMs while on a live call today. With the new side-by-side design, you can effortlessly multi-task on a voice or video call. On Mac, it only takes one click. Share messages, photos or files for a more active conversation together, without ever leaving your call.

Figure 3 Side-by-side call and chat on Skype for Mac 7.0

Free group video calls

Skype loves bringing groups together—so, last but not least, the free group video calls we previously announced work better than ever on the redesigned Skype for Mac and Windows.

Figure 4 Free group video call on Skype for Windows desktop

The journey of delivering the best communication experience doesn’t end here. We’re still working relentlessly on several exciting improvements and new features. Stay tuned for more great stuff. In the meantime, download Skype for Mac 7.0 and the new preview for Windows desktop. Give it a try, and let us know what you think.