nav search
Data Center Software Security Transformation DevOps Business Personal Tech Science Emergent Tech Bootnotes BOFH

Microsoft completes its Skype bot invasion with Web, OS X versions

What the bet Tay doesn't get a look-in?

By Richard Chirgwin, 20 Apr 2016

Mac users have been wrapped up in the warm embrace of Microsoft's Skype Bot strategy.

The Skype bots first hit at the Build conference at the end of March, with Redmond pitching them as bringing “expertise, products, services and entertainment” to Skype (really, truly nothing like Tay, okay?).

It's part of Satya Nadella's "conversation as a platform" strategy, or as the unkind might think of it "Clippy everywhere".

That release covered off Windows, Android, iPhone and iPad versions, but not OS X. That oversight has now been addressed with versions for OS X and on the Web.

Skype client users who want to troll a bot in private interact with Skype bots can do so by searching for them in Contacts – Add bots. The Web version puts the bots in a “Discover bots” toolbar.

Preview bots launched since March 30 include “Murphy”, which Redmond says is a bot “to find and create images for when questions can’t be answered by words alone”; and “Summarize, a Bot designed to give an overview of a web page if you don’t have time to read the whole thing”.

Microsoft is trying the bots out in Australia, Canada, England, Ireland, India, New Zealand, Singapore, and the US.

The original launch also included developer tools – an SDK, API and workflows – available for download at Skype's developer page. ®

The Register - Independent news and views for the tech community. Part of Situation Publishing