Microsoft closes Skype acquisition; AT&T enhances FMC portfolio

Microsoft has officially acquired Skype for $8.5 billion, a deal-in-the-making first announced on May 10. With the acquisition, Skype becomes a new business division within Microsoft, headed up by Tony Bates who will report directly to Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer.

Skype will continue to offer its current products global users globally, and in the longer term, it will also be integrated across Microsoft products to broaden Skype's reach. Skype reports that it currently delivers about 300 million minutes of Skype video calls each day making up about 42% of all Skype-to-Skype traffic. At the end of last year, Skype reported in Q4 2010 it had an average of 145 million connected users per month and its users made 207 billion minutes of voice and video calls in 2010.

BACKGROUND: Microsoft plans big Skype/Lync integration

In a statement, Tony Bates commented as the president of the Skype Division of Microsoft saying that "by bringing together the best of Microsoft and the best of Skype, we are committed to empowering consumers and businesses around the globe to connect in new ways. Together, we will be able to accelerate Skype's goal to reach 1 billion users daily."

In other news, AT&T announced it is adding two new fixed-mobile convergence products to its portfolio with AT&T OfficeDirect and AT&T Dual-Mode Mobile Voice that deliver select features from the customer's PBX to qualified mobile devices.

The OfficeDirect solution includes enhanced calling features, such as "Intelligent Call Routing," simultaneous or sequential ringing of up to five numbers and PBX abbreviated dial functionality to the service-enabled mobile device. OfficeDirect is sold as a service feature on an AT&T wireless plan and does not need any additional hardware or software.

AT&T's Dual-Mode Mobile Voice (AT&T DMMV) service transitions wireless calls between a cellular network and the customer's campus Wi-Fi network so customers can use an enabled dual-mode mobile device on the existing enterprise PBX. The service can transition the call between cellular and customer's campus Wi-Fi network either automatically or manually, based on the user's preference or factors like network strength.

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