Microsoft might be preparing its own “Chatter” video service inside Windows 8.
References to “Chatter” have been discovered in early leaked builds of Windows 8. Forum users at MDL spotted a DLL named ConsentUX.dll which includes the following:
100,Do you want to allow %1 to use your %2 ?
1601,Do you want to you allow Chatter to use your video ?
The current speculation is that the references point to a feature that Microsoft may have inadvertently revealed during its Windows 8 preview earlier this week. Manan Kakkar points out that the lock screen of Windows 8 includes video, messaging and group icons. Kakkar speculates that the icon could be the signs of Microsoft’s Skype and Windows Live Messenger integration. The icon for the group of people appears to be the same that’s used in Windows Live Messenger. Chatter even appears to have its own icon:
If Microsoft is building its own video calling service then it’s likely in response to Apple’s FaceTime product. Chatter could be used to unify several video calling services already available from Microsoft’s products and provide one easy route for Windows users to communicate over several Microsoft owned platforms. Microsoft purchased Skype in early May for $8.5 billion. The company says Skype will support Microsoft devices like Xbox and Kinect, Windows Phone and a wide array of Windows devices, and Microsoft will connect Skype users with Lync, Outlook, Xbox Live and other communities. Chatter could be the unification of said services. It’s also possible that the references are to an experimental feature, created before Microsoft’s Skype deal.