Get into the Holiday Spirit on Skype

24/12/2020 | Skype Blogs | Holidays on Skype

The holidays are upon us! Skype has traditionally played a key role keeping people connected during the holiday season, and this year that’s more important than ever. To that end, Skype has gotten all dressed up with your favorite holiday emojis, expressions and new background designs to help make it a magical, memorable season. We like to call it the “Holidification” of Skype!

Dancing tree gif

Express yourself in the spirit of the season with friends and family


There’s so much more to a conversation than speaking. A smile, a wink, a hand signal, the nod of the head, or even a quiet little chuckle: it deepens, enriches, and engages. Did the story your Uncle John just told make you sentimental? Pop a holiday tree emoji in the chat window. Talking with your cousin in London about whether reindeers really know how to fly? Give her Rudolph the Red-nosed Reindeer emoji with a blinking red nose! Get a sweet message from your Mom in the chat window? Respond to her comment with a holiday-themed reaction. Skype puts seasonal-themed emojis at your fingertips as you type!

"It’s all about creating more authentic connections,” says Sam Cundall, Animator and Principal Designer for Skype, Seattle, USA. “People should be able say something like, ‘wow, that sounds exactly like my friend Sam, he’s expressing himself the same way he would if he were in front of me.’ That’s the legacy of Skype’s quirkiness and humor: our emojis and expressions help make it as authentic as possible."

Family get together on Skype desktop app

Feel like you’re in a favorite holiday spot with Background Replace

Try one of our colorful holiday-themed backgrounds to set the mood. Or upload a moonscape for an out-of-this-world holiday. With Background Replace, your imagination rules. And you know how you usually have to deep-clean your place before a social get together? Not this year. One nice thing about celebrating remotely is you can use Background Replace to hide that messy living room! 

Did you know, Skype’s new ‘Together Mode’ feature brings even more fun to the festivities and makes you feel that you are in the same room when on a video chat with your friends and family; this way you can feel closer together even when apart.

"These are the latest of a multitude of beautiful rich backgrounds and themes we created this year in partnership with myriad talented artists and designers,” says Nando Costa, Microsoft Partner Director of Design, XC Storytelling. “As customers from around the globe depend on Skype for their communication needs in life, we are committed to bringing delightful and expressive moments to their everyday interactions."

Background replacement in Skype client

Spend as much time as you want together, now and throughout the year

Holiday celebrations tend to be filled with fun and festivities that can go on for hours, even days. That makes it kind of hard to fit everything into 40 minutes. With Skype, you can get together – free – with up to 100 people for up to 24 hours a day every day of the year. Your friends don’t need to have a Skype account either: With the Meet Now feature, it’s even easier to create video calls with just one click. No passwords. No sign-ups. Not even a download is needed! So go wild: enjoy as much time as you want sharing stories, showing off your favorite “ugly” holiday sweaters, playing games, and more. While you’re online, make some plans not just for the holidays but for birthdays, anniversaries, and other big events in the coming year. Because the time you spend together should be more than just for the holidays!

So, make this a season to remember, not because it’s the one where we all had to stay home – but the one where we still came together in the spirit of the holidays despite it all! We wish you a season filled with family, friends, and much cheer.

Happy Holidays!

We asked our teammates here at Skype about what the holidays means to them and here’s what some of them told us:

"Holidays are my favorite time of the year, especially when it comes to making memories! I love being able to connect with friends and family, whether close or far away. It's also the time of year where I feel the most thankful the people who make life wonderful."

–Luis Carrasco, Skype Global Product Director, San Cristobal, Venezuela

“Holidays are always a magical time for me. It’s a chance to make wonderful memories with friends and loved ones, even from a distance. Of course, I also find time to make ALL my favorite foods and play video games. Like I said: it’s a magical time!"

–Jane Gordina, Skype Software Engineer, Prague, Czech Republic

“For me, the holidays are a wonderful time of year where we can slow down and be with those we care about. I think it’s also about enjoying lots of great food, sharing, and giving. But most of all, it’s about being together even when apart.”

–Katerina Karellas, Skype Global Product Marketing Director, London, UK

"Holidays have been my favorite time of the year since I was a kid. That magical feeling of hearing holiday music, watching the lights shimmer throughout the neighborhood, and being surrounded by family and friends, is something I’ll never forget. Now that I have a family of my own, I am even more grateful for the time we spend together. The best part, though, is the spirit of giving.”

Adam Czeisler, Skype Engineering Director, Seattle, USA

“Holidays are one of the few times in the year when I can slow down and enjoy some truly unhurried time with my friends and family, near and far. This year, it’ll have to be mostly online, but I’m still eager and thankful to reconnect and just... chat!”

–Rohit Wad, Corporate Vice President, Issaquah, USA