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Microsoft released version 6 of Skype today for Windows and Mac, and it shows Redmond has big plans to integrate the messaging platform into its own suite of products. Skype users now get Windows Live Messenger, Hotmail, and Outlook.com contacts via Skype all in one place by merging accounts. You’ll soon be able to call your Microsoft messenger friends in Skype as you can now do with Facebook.

For the Mac folks, Skype now has Retina support and support to open chats in multiple Windows.

It looks like it may almost be time to upgrade from version 4.2

What’s new:

        • Microsoft and Facebook Account Integration

Sign up and sign-in is easier than ever. You can now sign into Skype using your Microsoft or Facebook account – there’s no need to create a new Skype account. This makes it even easier to connect with friends on Skype without having to set up another account.

        • IM friends on Messenger

Now you can instant message your Windows Live Messenger, Hotmail and Outlook.com contacts via Skype all in one place. If you use a Microsoft account today, merging your accounts is easy – just sign in to Skype with your Microsoft account.

        • Calling with Messenger friends is coming soon

We’re working on polishing a feature which will enable audio and video calls to Windows Live Messenger customers using Skype desktop clients. The feature will be available in coming weeks.

      • Open Chats in Multiple Windows
        We hear your feedback! With this release we’ve added support to open chats in multiple windows.
      • Retina Display Support
        We also added another feature you’ve asked for – support Retina display. Now you can take full advantage of improved usability and of higher resolution screens.