Skype preview launches for BlackBerry 10, but only for Q10 owners at first

For all the hullabaloo about Skype coming to BlackBerry 10, there wasn't much to show at the Z10's launch beyond a logo. We've got more to work with today -- sort of. A preview version of Skype has indeed popped up in BlackBerry World with voice, video and instant messaging like we've seen on other platforms. However, no one in the general public can actually use it yet: the app requires BlackBerry 10.1, which won't reach the market until the Q10 ships to Brits and Canucks. That leaves Americans and Z10 owners in the lurch for a few weeks, although they can at least see the light at the end of the VoIP tunnel.

Update: We've added the official press release after the break.

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In this preview version, you'll get all the Skype features that people have come to love – such as free video and voice calling, sending instant messages and text messages, sharing photos, videos and files, and calling to landlines and mobiles all over the world at Skype's low rates.

Please do remember that this release is still in preview state, which means that the experiences are not quite finalised, but we think you'll be impressed. The preview already offers all the Skype features BlackBerry10 users have been looking forward to.

Skype has been working very closely with BlackBerry to bring the Skype for Android app to the BlackBerry 10 platform, in order to bring all the amazing Skype features to the device. When you start using the app, you'll see that the UI has been adjusted to make it look great on the Q10 display, and that it's super easy to connect with your friends and family, as Skype contacts are automatically added to your phonebook when you sign in to Skype on your device. What's more, all your Skype notifications – including incoming chat, file transfer, contact invite requests and the like – are automatically visible in the BlackBerry Hub.

The Skype app is available from today for BlackBerry Q10 users.

You can download Skype to your Q10 phone from BlackBerry World now. As BlackBerry and your operator will make the new BlackBerry 10.1 operating system available on the BlackBerry Z10 in the near future, BlackBerry Z10 owners will also be able to enjoy Skype.

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Skype launches BlackBerry 10 preview, but only for Q10 owners at first (update: official)