Within the concrete walls of Microsoft’s Redmond R&D offices, the brains behind the next Xbox console are supposedly cooking up a new way to communicate with your friends. According to sources, Microsoft is heavily gearing up to roll out Skype onto the Xbox 720 while bringing all communications under its umbrella.
CVG reports that a source close to the matter has revealed Microsoft’s plan to unify communication between the PC, Tablet and Xbox under Skype. This means that users on Skype from their PC would be able to communicate with someone on their Xbox console and vice versa.
Skype would be replacing the aging Xbox Voice chat feature that was originally created with the 64k dial-up Internet connection in mind. Microsoft did update the software codec behind the tech back in 2010 to reduce the crackly noise coming through Xbox voice chat.
Microsoft acquired Skype for a cool $8.5 billion back in 2011, the company’s largest acquisition ever. The company revealed plans to replace its MSN communicator with Skype messenger along with its voice over IP initiative.
A recent job listing further revealed that Microsoft was indeed looking to hire a user interface designer for the “next gen Xbox,” with the sole responsibility of bringing Skype to the living room.
If Microsoft can successfully implement Skype across all devices so users can talk to each other cross-platforms, the possibilities could be endless. PS Vita users could chat with Xbox 720 and PC gamers. Cross Platform play could also be possible as well.
The last game to feature cross-platform play was Portal 2 by Valve across the PC and PS3. Gamers were able to voice chat using Valve’s Steam service on the PS3. Skullgirls will also offer cross-platform play across PC and PS3 once it drops onto Steam.
Unfortunately, Microsoft gave up on the notion of cross-platform gaming with Shadowrun in 2007 and have reportedly axed this concept altogether. Hopefully, Microsoft will reconsider this especially with SmartGlass being its latest pet project.