The Skype for Web Beta is now open to all users in the United States and United Kingdom. Microsoft had limited the beta to a select group of users, but has announced the beta is now open to all. In order to join the beta, users will need to download a plugin for their browser.
Microsoft initially started rolling out beta invitations in March. It allows users to place Skype calls through a web browser, removing the need to download a standalone application. It has the major features you would expect from Skype, including messaging, audio calls, and video calls.
Skype for Web is compatible with Internet Explorer, Chrome, Firefox and Safari. If you already use Skype, go to Skype.com, click the “Launch Skype for Web BETA” link, and sign in to see all your contacts and latest conversation history.
Microsoft is using Web Real-Time Communication (WebRTC) APIs to enable Skype’s browser-to-browser voice calling, video chat, and instant messaging. The emerging web standard has the backing of Google, Mozilla, Microsoft, and others.