These are Skype 5.10 for Windows, 5.8 for the Mac and the big 4.0 for Linux, with existing users able to “check for updates” to upgrade to Skype’s latest and greatest.
Among other improvements, the Windows version’s main highlights are:
- Select and pin your favorite contacts
- Facebook and Skype contacts combined into one Contacts list
- Easier to understand premium subscription notices
- Possibility to control Skype video rendering technology for backward compatibility for people who have trouble with video calls
Those on Macs using Skype will, among other improvements, notice:
- The return of the slim, repositionable and resizable contact list
- Skype for Mac will “auto rotate” the video when an iPhone, iPad or Android user changes the orientation of their phone (Windows Phone Skype was already supported in this regard for Mac Skype users).
- Improved screen sharing to share with multiple people, letting you share your desktop over a call or show friends and family your phones.
- Compatibility with OS X Leopard through to OS X Mountain Lion
- The promise of “much more to come real soon” including “the ability to open chats in separate windows and keep track of what's going on with multiple contacts at once”.
Linux users will notice, amongst other improvements, four major changes:
- A new “Conversations View where users can easily track all of their chats in a unified window” that can be disabled for those users “who prefer the old view”.
- A brand new Call View
- Improved call quality “thanks to several investments we made in improving audio quality”
- Improved video quality and support for more webcams.
The Linux version also has “Loads of other small improvements and fixes” which includes “improved chat synchronization, new presence and emoticon icons, the ability to store and view phone numbers in a Skype contact's profile, much lower chance Skype for Linux will crash or freeze, and chat history loading is now much faster”.
Skype also warns Linux users that version 4.0 “might take a few minutes (depending on how lengthy your chat history is). Please do not close Skype during this time. Subsequent starts will load much more quickly”.
Details of the Windows Skype improvements are here, Mac OS X Skype info is here, and Linux users will find the Skype details they seek here.