Job adverts from Microsoft have fuelled speculation that its Xbox LIVE voice chat programme could be replaced by Skype.

Hot on the heels of the company’s announcement to replace Microsoft Messenger with Skype in March, notices on its website confirm that popular software application Skype will be joining up with the games console.

Last week’s job announcement on Microsoft’s career page, titled ‘software development engineer – Skype for Xbox job’, went onto reveal that the role is within a ‘new team to Skype’.

Skype Xbox Team revealed

The brief said: “We’re building the next generations of our products and technology right here in London and Skype is looking to hire a software development engineer to contribute to the development of our experiences on Xbox.

“As a member of the Skype Xbox Engineering Team in London, you will have a strong technical background developing client and/or embedded software.”

A raft of other vacancies for the ‘Skype for Xbox team’, on Microsoft’s website, reference driving the commercial and financial success of the ‘Skype on Xbox’ project and mention the new combination of the ‘powerful Xbox hardware with Skype’s rich communication toolset’.

Currently Xbox LIVE users can use voice chat for free if they have a headset. Other paid for options include party chat or Xbox Kinect – which enables voice chat or video chat with other Xbox 360 users, or users of Windows Live Messenger.

Microsoft’s $8.5 billion procurement of Skype took place in 2011 and was the biggest purchase in the company’s 40-year history.

Although it appears Microsoft is phasing out another communication platform for a more streamlined service, specific details on the new Xbox/Skype strategy have not officially been released.

It is also not known if the collaboration will coincide with the eagerly anticipated release of the new Xbox – expected later this year.


[Image via stuffpoint]