I, for one, cannot WAIT to see these new ads, which Microsoft describes as "content that could spark additional topics of conversation that are relevant to Skype users."
Isn't that great? Ads are now "content." And the motivation isn't to make a bundle of money on ads, it's to "spark conversations."
Add this to the craptastical user interface and built-in backdoor eavesdropping, and it's plain to see that Skype has a bright future ahead!
Still have to use skype for external calls and stuff, but for internal comms we love it so far.
There aren't any adverts so far ..
To put it another way, how often are most people away from a WiFi network when they make a call? Or more importantly, when they access a data stream with their device? $8 billion for Microsoft is not a significant amount when it comes to purchasing growth, and the article isn't about Facetime for Linux.
Does Skype run decently on any phone platform? I know the Android version will drain the battery dry faster than playing a 3D game and will not reliably receive calls even when running in the foreground. And it's my understanding that the WP7 version requires so much memory it doesn't even run on all WP7 phones, and will not run at all in the background making it totally useless.
At this point the idea that Skype + mobile would be some kind of a killer combination worth billions seems like a total pipe-dream. The only real-world effect it has is to kill Nokia faster due to mobile operators hating Skype, and not wanting to be aligned with MS.
Like most Microsoft products, the big fish is enterprise, not consumers. The 3D game comparison is somewhat misleading.
As an aside, the current version of Windows Phone was developed prior to the acquisition of Skype. Closer integration in future versions would not be unexpected.
My point about battery life might not have been well made. It's not that games are an alternative to Skype, but that it's just absurdly power-hungry. Even more so than the apps that you'd expect to be the real hogs. My Nexus S usually goes 2-3 days between charges. If I leave Skype running in the background, it's drained in less than 8 hours.
Controlling that largest VoIP network in the world might well be valuable to MS. But to date I just haven't seen any evidence of it mixing well with mobile phones.
Just curious. I've never had anything against ads personally unless they're intrusive -- or that my data is being bought & sold to show them. Not that I trust $vendor to keep that data private, but showing me the latest advertisement for some movie coming out next week isn't going to ruin my experience. Youtube's advertisement implementation for example, I find intrusive & frustrating as it literally displays over top of the content and returns on every video you watch.
Until skype starts strapping a pepsi logo to my partner-in-chat's face, I'm content.
If it helps keep skype around longer, kudos. I enjoy using the app.
I agree that ads have their place, particularly in a free product or service. But since you brought up Google, I'm not sure we should be holding them up as an example of how to do un-intrusive advertising:
When you search Google, it uses Google's servers and web index.
Skype uses other user's bandwidth to route calls.
Leeching other people's bandwidth and also advertising to you while doing so, stings.
(Yes they have directory services and development to pay for, and yes they have infrastructure, for POTS-integration, but on the other hand, POTS-integration isn't free, it's already charged for separately on a service-use basis).
Well, no they don't. They can drop any legacy client whenever they wish. Microsoft could even try to make it sound like they're doing a good thing by removing unmaintainable legacy stuff they inherited from Skype.
Microsoft is not really required to maintain backwards compatibility with Skypes legacy stuff. It is possible they updated the Linux client for exactly this reason; update what you can, depreciate the rest for the good of everyone else.
And has a bunch of security holes.
So I don't really get your point.
Voice/chat only, of course, because of missing front camera.
1. Skype 4 require download 95 additional packages for ubuntu version (all marked i386 even if you using amd64)
2. I am not sure but giant ads probably included too 
$ file /usr/bin/skype
/usr/bin/skype: ELF 32-bit LSB executable, Intel 80386, version 1 (SYSV), dynamically linked (uses shared libs), for GNU/Linux 2.6.15, BuildID[sha1]=0x3223447b98867e62fbed258aa0da4f2281ab6f11, stripped
I haven't tested it deeply, but looks like runs smoother than the previous (quite unstable) version.
This probably works now on Ubuntu, which has finally rolled out a multilib implementation (that I haven't kicked the tires on yet).
After some time I've found that there's no real advantage for me on a 64 bits OS for a laptop (ie. I have only 3GB of RAM, performance looks the same, etc).
sh-4.2$ rpm -q flash-player
sh-4.2$ file /usr/lib64/browser-plugins/libflashplayer.so
/usr/lib64/browser-plugins/libflashplayer.so: ELF 64-bit LSB shared object, x86-64, version 1 (SYSV), dynamically linked, stripped
I'm not a heavy flash user, but after 6 months I was really frustrated. The 32 bits version works great in comparison.
Just try it. Chances are you won't even notice the difference, except that your battery will last a tiny bit longer if you do compute-heavy stuff.
Another reason that I keep 32bit is portability, as I have quite a peculiar setup: I keep my Linux on a removable HDD, and boot off it on several different machines, which may or may not support 64bit. (So I don't have to tow my laptop to work and back every day.)
Personally I'm waiting for debian multiarch to switch, since I have no desire to reinstall everything from scratch. If debian multiarch did not exist I might have bitten the bullet, but since it does, I can wait a bit for it.
But those are still bleeding edge options for people comfortable with tinkering with their systems. I was speaking to the simple choice of i686 vs. x86_64 in pre-cooked systems.
At this point, I see no reason to run a pure 32 bit userspace. There are no real advantages. The performance impacts are minor, and most people are over 4 GB (or should be).
Here list of my dependencies for skype 4:
bluez-alsa:i386 glib-networking:i386 gstreamer0.10-plugins-good:i386 gstreamer0.10-x:i386 gtk2-engines:i386 gtk2-engines-murrine:i386 gtk2-engines-oxygen:i386
gtk2-engines-pixbuf:i386 ia32-libs ia32-libs-multiarch:i386 ibus-gtk:i386 lib32asound2 lib32gcc1 lib32stdc++6 libaa1:i386 libaio1:i386 libao4:i386 libatk1.0-0:i386
libaudiofile1:i386 libavc1394-0:i386 libc6-i386 libcaca0:i386 libcairo-gobject2:i386 libcairo2:i386 libcanberra-gtk-module:i386 libcanberra-gtk0:i386
libcanberra0:i386 libcap2:i386 libcroco3:i386 libcupsimage2:i386 libcurl3:i386 libdbus-glib-1-2:i386 libdv4:i386 libesd0:i386 libgail-common:i386 libgail18:i386
libgconf-2-4:i386 libgdbm3:i386 libgdk-pixbuf2.0-0:i386 libgettextpo0:i386 libgnome-keyring0:i386 libgomp1:i386 libgtk2.0-0:i386 libgudev-1.0-0:i386
libibus-1.0-0:i386 libidn11:i386 libiec61883-0:i386 libjasper1:i386 libmad0:i386 libmikmod2:i386 libnspr4:i386 libnss3:i386 libodbc1:i386 libpango1.0-0:i386
libpixman-1-0:i386 libproxy1:i386 libpulse-mainloop-glib0:i386 libpulsedsp:i386 libqt4-designer:i386 libqt4-opengl:i386 libqt4-qt3support:i386
libqt4-scripttools:i386 libqt4-svg:i386 libqt4-test:i386 libqtwebkit4:i386 libraw1394-11:i386 librsvg2-2:i386 librsvg2-common:i386 librtmp0:i386
libsdl-image1.2:i386 libsdl-mixer1.2:i386 libsdl-net1.2:i386 libsdl-ttf2.0-0:i386 libsdl1.2debian:i386 libshout3:i386 libsoup-gnome2.4-1:i386 libsoup2.4-1:i386
libspeex1:i386 libssl0.9.8:i386 libstdc++5:i386 libtag1-vanilla:i386 libtag1c2a:i386 libtdb1:i386 libunistring0:i386 libvorbisfile3:i386 libwavpack1:i386
libxaw7:i386 libxcb-render0:i386 libxcb-shm0:i386 libxft2:i386 libxmu6:i386 libxp6:i386 libxtst6:i386 odbcinst1debian2:i386 xaw3dg:i386
Must just be Ubuntu ^.^
I've been waiting for an update to the Linux Skype client for years. Years!
Of course, if I have to install a ton of i386 packages or have big ass ads all over the place I think it's not worth the effort.
Is it too much to ask to give paying customers access to just a lib that can be used in other GUIs? :(
I think that Jitsi (formerly named SIP Communicator) supports audio and video chat on Windows and OS X as well. I don't think that any of these projects support video conference calls yet, but it's on the "near future" section of Jitsi's roadmap.
ED: The English version is 2.2, the American version is 4.0...
For non-americans, use the american link: http://www.skype.com/intl/en-us/get-skype/on-your-computer/l...
Edit had to install 6 deps using gdebi; when I ran the app it crashed before authentication completed and took down my desktop session on Kubuntu 12.04.
I guess that was before they were bought by Microsoft.
The protocol is incomplete (the "native" Qt UI isn't built on it), but it is at least documented on their dev site.
I have tested it; works great!
I'm switching a lot between OSX and Windows, and sometimes even Linux, and the clients are totally different on each platform to the point where it get's hard to use. And don't get me started on that Android-client they have made, total utter garbadge.
I've been annoyed by this too, how hard is it to keep the UI somewhat alike, at least between the desktop applications?
I'm actually a bit surprised that you're even trying this since it seems to be a well-proven fact that Microsoft can't make money on search or ads. And if you needed additional revenue, did you ever consider asking people to pay you for your service?
As an interesting aside, Skype's move to using super-nodes that are controlled by them is also useful for the change to an advertisement supported business. Can you imagine how hard it would be to share ad revenue with regular users whose computers had been promoted to super-nodes simply because of bandwidth capacity and their up-time numbers?
Don't get me wrong, I'd love Skype to be open sourced. But I can see why they haven't done so.
I encourage other users to down vote these style of comments, and up vote explicit reasoned replies.
I'm primarily an Ubuntu user (Unity or XFCE) and use a secondary Windows 7 laptop with Skype as a communication device.
So remove the old version of skype first before installing the new one.
The download page is confusing. I believe it should read "Fedora X or later". Previous package was for Fedora 10 I think, and I've been using it since Fedora 12.