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Skype for Business Mobile Client for Android

Usually I am not one for blogging about updates, but the Skype for Business Android app is now available for general release. I had been on the SfB for Android insider program for the client, but work and home pressures ensured that active testing and contributing slipped into the “never to be looked at” pile. So what has changed? Well as expected the UI is now branded in the Skype for Business colour scheme and I have to add it looks great. It is clean, bright and responsive. I have to say it looks a lot better than the Windows mobile app! Sadly, it comes with all the usual pain points we have experienced with the Lync apps before. Maybe there are improvements behind the scenes, but there still appears to be issues with the following (not a definitive list as I have only just downloaded it):

  • Your picture showing (your contacts show)
  • Meeting join takes a ridiculous amount of time to load in to, sometimes not loading at all.
  • Status not always showing when you sign in, requiring a manual update of your status to kick it into life
  • Status of your contacts not always updating properly. E.g. contacts showing as available on the mobile client, but offline, or inactive on the desktop client at the same time.

Anyway enough of the bad. There are some cool things. I like the new home screen and the ability to join conferences from one click.

We also have the ability to show the status bar on the home screen when the app is minimized, although this seems a little pointless at the moment for me.

The new dial pad layout with separate tab for voicemail is pretty cool, I like the distinction between them rather than trying to fit them both in the same screen.

Voicemail is pretty cool, it gives you the ability to replay the voicemail at both normal and double speed. Although, I am not sure what benefit beyond comic value double speed gives, but it made me laugh and probably the best single feature of the client even though it has no real business use. J

Meeting join seems to be buggy, doesn’t always work for me but that could be down to my phone model and android version.

Other Screenshots


  1. One of the major problems I find with Skype for business is the “availability” status indicator.
    On the desktop this setting can be adjusted relatively easily (provided your administrator has not inserted an overriding policy)
    On the android version “Skype for business for Android” V 6.0.0.X there is no such place to make an adjustment. As a result, the app defaults to placing you in “inactive” mode after only five minutes if not continuously using the app. Coworkers are less likely to message when they observe such a status, even though one is available to field messages.

    A work around to this issue is using an app called MacroDroid
    I created a macro with the following settings;

    Regular Interval 00:04:45

    Launch Skype for Business (keep exisiting option)
    Confiugure App Notifications (Enable Skype for Business)
    Enable Category (Uncategorized)
    Launch Home Screen

    This will basically touch the SkypeFB just ender every 5 minutes to keep the status from switching to “inactive”
    It’s sloppy, but it works. Always open to working alternative approaches.
    I have a rooted phone, but I don’t think any of the Triggers or actions require it.

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