UK markets closed

Microsoft says Skype users surge 70% amid coronavirus outbreak

FILE PHOTO: Microsoft holds device-launching event in Barcelona ahead of the 2019 Mobile World Congress

(Reuters) - The number of people using Microsoft's Skype video calling system has surged by 70% in a month to 40 million people presently, as more individuals stay home due to the coronavirus outbreak, the company said on Monday.

Skype-to-Skype calling minutes jumped 220% from a month earlier, the company said in a blog post https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/microsoft-365/blog/2020/03/30/introducing-new-microsoft-365-personal-family-subscriptions.

Microsoft added that it is re-branding its popular productivity suite Office 365 to 'Microsoft 365' beginning April 21, with new features including a family safety app that helps manage screen time across Windows PCs, Android, and Xbox.

Stay-at-home stocks like video conferencing company Zoom Video Communications <ZM.O> and several gaming stocks have seen a surge recently as millions of people are expected to spend weeks or longer inside their homes.

The company also added new features in its Microsoft Teams, which is used by over 44 million people everyday, promoting the use of the workplace chat app among family and friends.


(Reporting by Ayanti Bera in Bengaluru; Editing by Aditya Soni and Shailesh Kuber)