As Microsoft clarifies its commitment to building out its Skype experience on various devices, those who used Skype via a smart television can count them among the list of devices that are no longer supported. In an odd sort of contradiction to recent statements about expanding Skype services, news regarding Skype pulling support for Smart TV’s has been announced by Skype.
Starting in June 2016, the Skype for TV application will no longer be supported; there will be no updates to the application. This will also affect new account creation and password resets. This will only be available through Skype.com.”
The end of support for Skype on smart TV’s begins today, March 7, 2016, and Skype is leaving it up to smart TV manufacturers whether or not they decided to remove the app or service from their devices or continue to offer an unsupported version.
This may vary depending on the TV model. TV manufacturers may remove the Skype for TV application from some or all of their models. If you have questions, please contact your TV manufacturer for information on the availability of Skype for TV on your TV model.”
Understandably, most manufacturers will seek to remove the app, but smart TV manufacturers have been slow at times to offer software updates to their devices. Upon hearing the news, Samsung has announced that it will remove the service (and presumably) the apps from their smart TV’s beginning June 2, 2016. According to Samsung, they will alert their customers to the change when applied.
As for the reason behind the removal, it seems as though Skype has telemetry indicating the most users are accessing the service from their smartphones while in the living room rather than on the big screen. While it makes financial and strategic sense to end Skype for TV support, it seems the second screen experience envisioned by smart TV manufacturers is continually losing ground to the readily available smartphone.