If you were using Skype inside of a web browser(such as Internet Explorer or Google Chrome) by visiting Skype.com, you would need to download some software (a plug-in to be precise) in order for it to work. Today that is about to change.
In an official posting on their blog, Skype announced on Friday that you will no longer need a plugin to use Skype inside of a web browser. At the time of publishing this feature is only available to you if you are using Microsoft’s Edge web browser on Windows 10. However, Microsoft is still working on bringing this feature to other web browsers (including Mozilla Firefox and Google Chrome). The way this works is that you will visit skype.com, login with your Skype/Microsoft/outlook.com account and start using Skype as if it were a regular desktop application.
Under the hood there is a technology being used called WebRTC which makes video and voice calling through a browser possible. This is a testament to the fact that we are moving away from the darker days of the web where we needed to download additional software to use an application inside of a web browser and Skype is doing an adequate job of keeping up with this trend. With that being said they are just playing catch up right now as both Facebook and Google’s Hangouts service allow you to make video calls inside of a web browser. On a more personal note, if they add the capability to share my screen inside of Skype for web then I might be tempted into just ditching the desktop application for Skype and using it inside of my web browser.
From a security standpoint this is also a good move as someone can be easily tricked into downloading something which will infect their computer. What do you use for video calling? Let me know in the comments.