Microsoft only just launched a preview of Skype for Business, but it's already preparing for the future. In a new vision video released today, the software maker's message is a clear one: it's just the beginning. Microsoft envisions a future where Skype is on your wrist, on giant displays in offices, used to translate calls on the fly, and a platform to speak to your doctor. It’s an achievable future that doesn’t feel as far removed as some of Microsoft’s future productivity videos, and it introduces new concepts like simple data sharing over Skype and the ability to have two-way annotated meetings.
A lot of this vision is starting to become reality with products like Microsoft’s Surface Hub and the HoloLens headset. Surface Hub, a giant 84-inch touchscreen display, has Skype built in, and new ways to hold meetings across multiple devices. While Microsoft hasn’t detailed all of HoloLens’ use cases, the company was quick to show Skype an example of how communications could change in the future thanks to holograms and headsets. We got the chance to try out the Skype demo in January with HoloLens and were impressed with the early concept.
The final results of Microsoft’s Skype push might not be as seamless as its concept video suggests, but it once again demonstrates the company’s obsession with cross-platform and having the answer for all productivity scenarios. It’s Microsoft playing to its traditional strengths.