Skype was one of the pioneers of Voice over IP when it launched in 2003. Microsoft apparently saw the value in it, purchasing the company and its 170 million users in 2011. Now, even with every messaging app having some sort of VoIP functionality, Skype continues to be a recognizable and viable name as evidenced by it surpassing one billion downloads on the Google Play Store.
That's good news for Microsoft, even if the firm is moving away from the brand on its business side, transforming Skype for Business into Microsoft Teams. The achievement however shows that Skype is still a popular brand for individuals wanting a way to verbally connect with friends without traditional phone service. And keep in mind that the one billion number is only for the consumer version of the Android app, and does not include iOS downloads or Skype for Business numbers.
Microsoft rolled out a redesigned UI for Skype in June, much to the frustration of many long-time users of the app. The outcry forced Microsoft to revert some UI features back to the old design including presence controls.
Also, as part of bringing Skype in line with Microsoft's smart devices, Cortana was released to the service earlier this month.