Skype launches app store

Dipping its toe into the app store waters, Skype has unveiled a directory for third-party apps that tie into the company's online calling service.

Screenshot by Lance Whitney/CNET

Skype has launched its own app store, offering third-party apps that can integrate with the company's online calling and messaging service.

Third-party apps have been available through Skype in the past, but its App Directory is the company's first effort to host a more official place where people can search for, browse, and download the software they want. The store officially opened Wednesday.

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Skype users can browse a list of all apps; the store offers just 23 at the moment. Alternatively, people can click on categories, such as business, call recording, and desktop sharing.

The site's basic search feature didn't deliver accurate results in my testing--even with only 23 apps to search through. Advanced search seems to work more reliably.

Among the selections, you'll find such apps as VodBurner Video Call Recorder, which lets you record your Skype video calls; InnerPass Screen Sharing, which lets you share your desktop and other screens during a call; and VuRoom, which expands on Skype's video conferencing and collaboration features for business users.

Some of the apps are free; some cost a few dollars or more. Clicking on the page for a specific app will display more details about it, including its features and requirements, a brief description, and any ratings or comments from other users. Skype also displays a window at the top of the app directory where you can scroll to see new apps, the top free apps, and the top paid apps.

Developers who've built their own app for Skype can submit it to the company for a potential spot in the directory. And with only 23 apps right now, there's certainly room for a lot more.

About the author

Journalist, software trainer, and Web developer Lance Whitney writes columns and reviews for CNET, Computer Shopper, Microsoft TechNet, and other technology sites. His first book, "Windows 8 Five Minutes at a Time," was published by Wiley & Sons in November 2012.

 

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