Starting today, Skype will be accessible from Outlook.com in the UK, letting users make and receive calls from their inboxes.

The merging of the two services has been in the pipeline for some time, with Microsoft promising last year that Skype on email was on its way.

The preview version is available in the UK right now while Skype tells us that a US version will be available "in a few weeks".

A new outlook

To use it, you must download a browser plugin and then merge your Microsoft and Skype accounts. You'll also be able to import all your Skype contacts to Outlook.

You'll then be able to hit the video or audio call buttons, which will appear in emails and IM chats, to start chatting.