Microsoft today made number of announcement regarding Lync and Skype at its first ever Lync conference. Skype SVP Tony Bates gave a keynote talking about the Lync/Skype strategies. Microsoft has now moved Lync team under Tony Bates. Microsoft announced that Lync and Skype federation is coming to all users by June 2013 and new mobile apps with video over IP is coming in March as well.
- Lync and Skype connectivity. We’re proud to announce Lync-Skype connectivity for presence, IM and voice will be available to all Lync users by June. This move will begin to enable what we call B2X. B2X places the focus of business communication on enabling human interactions. B2X puts people first and looks at communications in a unified way, not as disparate technology silos focused on one task or protocol.
- Lync Room System. Customer research showed most businesses were not getting the best experience from collaboration-enabled conference rooms. For example, it can take almost 15 minutes to start a meeting with video and content. Time is money and to make organizations more productive, today we are unveiling Lync Room System. Lync Room System makes it easy to share any content on your computer as naturally as you share video—and it is all automatically configured so you can start your meetings without technical difficulties. At today’s conference, Crestron, Lifesize, Polycom, and SMART announced their intent to bring Lync Room System products to market to meet the growing need for collaboration-enabled conference rooms.
- Mobile app availability. Lync 2013 mobile apps for Windows Phone 8 and iOS will be available in early March, with Android coming roughly a month later. We’ve added VoIP and video over IP to all of the apps, and added the ability for iPad users to view shared desktop and application content in a Lync meeting. We’ve built these apps with real users’ needs in mind—and have even designed in features that preserve mobile battery life.
Microsoft also updated their roadmap for next 18 months with the following updates,
- Lync online/server updates. Lync Online updates will be delivered quarterly to enable rapid customer adoption, and we will release a new Lync server version in Q2 of 2014.
- Enterprise voice in the cloud. Add enterprise voice support to Lync Online/Office 365.
- Lync meetings. Add structured meeting support to Lync Online and the next version of Lync Server enabling remaining Live Meeting customers to fully transition to Lync.
- Video connectivity and interoperability. Make rich video more pervasive and accessible by adding video to Skype + Lync connectivity and native interoperability between Lync and 3rd party VTCs.