Microsoft's (NASDAQ:MSFT) Skype is getting a big upgrade amid threats to both Windows and Office. Fool contributor Tim Beyers explains the implications in the following video.  

Earlier this week, Microsoft unveiled Skype TX for professional broadcasters. The idea is to appeal to those in the production business by offering a more robust version of the VoiP platform that Mr. Softy acquired for $8.5 billion in 2011.

How robust? TX is designed for high-quality remote broadcast, and as such, supports HD-SDI video input and output, eliminates ads and notifications, and autocorrects aspect ratios for cleaner streaming. Microsoft plans to sell TX as part of the Skype in Media bundle, though pricing is unknown at this point.

What we do know is that voice, video, and messaging software is becoming more strategic to Microsoft's business. Specifically, Skype pairs with the company's "Lync" platform to form a unified communications offering for businesses. Sales of Lync products grew 25% in the fiscal second quarter.

For now, that's still a small part of the business. And yet the governing segment -- Server and Tools -- is growing in importance with each passing year. Tim says a heavy focus on Skype and related big-ticket, transformative products could push the division to new highs.

Do you agree? Are you using Microsoft's Skype? Please watch the video to get the full story and then leave a comment to let us know your take, including whether you would buy, sell, or short Microsoft stock at current prices.

Your chance to be like the Microsoft millionaires
OK, so you can't go back to 1986 and invest in the Microsoft IPO. You can still bet on the next Microsoft, and our equity analysts have come up with three stock picks that they believe fit the bill. Our new special report reveals the names of these multibaggers in the making -- click here to get your copy now.

Tim Beyers is a member of the Motley Fool Rule Breakers stock-picking team and the Motley Fool Supernova Odyssey I mission. He didn't own shares in any of the companies mentioned in this article at the time of publication. Check out Tim's web home and portfolio holdings or connect with him on Google+Tumblr, or Twitter, where he goes by @milehighfool. You can also get his insights delivered directly to your RSS reader.

The Motley Fool owns shares of Microsoft. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

Compare Brokers