Skype to retire 5-month old editions for Windows, Mac

Not clear whether that means everyone must upgrade or lose access to the calling and chat service

By , Computerworld |  Unified Communications, Skype

Skype today said it would retire older versions of its desktop Internet calling application, including versions on Windows and OS X launched as recently as January and February of this year.

Users were encouraged to upgrade to a new edition of Skype before those editions are put to pasture.

"We are going to retire older versions of Skype for Windows desktop (6.13 and below) as well as Skype for Mac (6.14 and below) over the next few months," Skype said in a Friday post.

Skype is a division of Microsoft, which acquired the chat and over-IP phone software company in 2011 for $8.5 billion.

Skype for Windows 6.13 shipped in January 2014, while Skype for OS X 6.14 reached users in February. Those versions, and any earlier, are the ones marked for retirement.

The current versions of Skype are 6.16 for Windows and 6.18 for OS X.

Skype did not spell out what it meant by "retire," which could simply indicate that the older software will no longer be supported. Currently, anything prior to version 6.0 on Windows is on the no-support list. However, it could also mean that only the most recent versions will connect to the Skype network.

Microsoft did not immediately reply to a request for clarification.

While Skype did not elaborate on why it's pushing the older editions into retirement, it was reminiscent of moves that Microsoft itself has taken. In April, for example, Microsoft required customers running Windows 8.1, the upgrade released last October, to migrate to Windows 8.1 Update by June 10 or lose patching privileges.

Microsoft did the same with Internet Explorer 11 (IE11) on Windows 7, giving consumers until June 10 to apply an April update.

In both those cases, Microsoft said it was setting a "new servicing baseline" with the mandated editions.

The newest versions of Skype for Windows desktop and OS X can be downloaded from the division's website.

Gregg Keizer covers Microsoft, security issues, Apple, Web browsers and general technology breaking news for Computerworld. Follow Gregg on Twitter at @gkeizer, on Google+ or subscribe to Gregg's RSS feed. His email address is gkeizer@computerworld.com.

See more by Gregg Keizer on Computerworld.com.

Read more about applications in Computerworld's Applications Topic Center.


Originally published on Computerworld |  Click here to read the original story.
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