Skype confirmed Thursday that it has acquired the mobile video service Qik, in a deal that it announced during its presentation at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas. Business Insider was first to break the news, reporting that Skype paid out $100 million for the service.
In a post on the Skype blog, CEO Tony Bates said Qik’s video technology was complementary to what Skype already offered users. The acquisition will help accelerate Skype’s embrace of the mobile video market, as Qik is already available on more than 200 mobile phones running Android, iOS, Symbian, BlackBerry OS and Windows Mobile, according to the blog post.
We reported last month that Skype was actively hiring Android and iOS developers to advance its mobile video chat efforts. Since then, the company has been busy with the launch of a major update to its iOS app that enables video chat with other Skype users from their iPhones.
Mobile devices aren’t the only gadgets Skype is busy integrating with. Skype also announced at CES that later this year, Sony Bravia and Vizio TVs will join the ranks of Skype-enabled chat devices. Panasonic and Samsung already sell Skype-enabled televisions, a product launched at last year’s CES. Sony and Panasonic will also soon be offering those not looking to upgrade their televisions an upcoming Skype-enabled Blu-ray player and webcam to bring the service to the big screen.
Skype has become a valuable communication tool for users and companies alike as it takes over the long distance market. But video chat is clearly the future for the company, with more than 40 percent of all Skype chat minutes taking place over video.
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