You can launch Skype using the uri pattern in Windows 8.

Skype supports the following protocols

  • skype
  • tel
  • sms
  • message-skype-com
  • message-messenger
  • audiocall-messenger
  • videocall-messenger
  • audiocall-skype-com
  • videocall-skype-com
var chatTo = new Uri("message-skype-com:" + UserNameTextBox.Text);
await Windows.System.Launcher.LaunchUriAsync(chatTo);

More details and samples on Geert van der Cruijsen’s blog

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