Microsoft is discontinuing Skype WiFi as of March 31, as reported earlier today by TechCrunch.
According to a Skype Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) page, users won’t be able to download the Skype WiFi application after that date. Those who still have Skype WiFi installed after March 31 will no longer be able to find or use hotspots.
Microsoft is advising those with Skype Credit to use it toward calling mobile and landline numbers.
“We’re retiring Skype WiFi globally so we can better focus our efforts on bringing you the best possible experience through our core Skype features.”
In June 2015, Microsoft officials confirmed the company was working to roll out an updated and rebranded version of Skype WiFi that was called Microsoft WiFi.
I asked Microsoft if the company was still planning to roll out Microsoft WiFi or if it was getting out of the WiFi hotspot access business completely. No word back so far. But the Microsoft WiFi web site, which as of earlier today still had a “coming soon” message is now down.
Microsoft was planning to make Microsoft WiFi a service for both consumers and business customers (in the latter’s case, through Office 365 plans). I don’t see any reference to Skype or Microsoft WiFi on the company’s Office 365 plan pages.
Skype is one of the Microsoft business units which experienced job cuts last Fall, with Microsoft officials characterizing the move as a “consolidation.”
Skype WiFi allows users to get online using Skype Credit via more than two million WiFi hotspots worldwide.