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Microsoft remains vague on Skype plans, discontinuing products

By Jim O'Neill / Fierce
October 23, 2011

Microsoft's (Nasdaq: MSFT) $8.5 billion acquisition of Skype is rolling on towards its final regulatory hoops through which it'll need to jump before being finalized, but there's still not much known about what the company plans to do with the company or how it plans to monetize the (mostly) free service.

During Microsoft's earnings call Thursday, CFO Peter Klein said Skype was in the process of being integrated across Microsoft's portfolio, "including Lync, Windows Live Messenger, Windows Phone and the Xbox platform."

"We closed the deal last week so we're real-time doing a lot of the great work on the product integration planning," he said. "Not only are there great opportunities to integrate across our product portfolio but as they were working on even before we announced the acquisition, new revenue opportunities related to advertising and premium services, so all of that's coming together as we speak. And mostly, we're incredibly excited to get to work together more fully now that the deal has closed."

Despite pressure form analysts, Klein declined to go into much more detail, aside from saying the service would become part of Microsoft's Entertainment & Devices unit and that its numbers would be folded into results next quarter.

And, asked whether Skype's acquisition would mean Microsoft would discontinue any other products, Klein said: "Clearly, it's a little premature to talk about the changes and what we're going to do with the products."


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