On May 10, 2011, Microsoft Corp. (Nasdaq: “MSFT”) and Skype Global S.à r.l today announced that they have entered into a definitive agreement under which Microsoft will acquire Skype, the leading Internet communications company, for $8.5 billion in cash from the investor group led by Silver Lake. The agreement has been approved by the boards of directors of both Microsoft and Skype.
Read the press release from Microsoft News Center.
Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer and Skype CEO Tony Bates announce Microsoft's acquisition of Skype. San Francisco, May 10, 2011
Article from The Telegraph about this deal.
Skype will support Microsoft devices like Xbox and Kinect, Windows Phone and a wide array of Windows devices, and Microsoft will connect Skype users with Lync, Outlook, Xbox Live and other communities. Microsoft will continue to invest in and support Skype clients on non-Microsoft platforms. The acquisition will increase the accessibility of real-time video and voice communications, bringing benefits to both consumers and enterprise users and generating significant new business and revenue opportunities. The combination will extend Skype’s world-class brand and the reach of its networked platform, while enhancing Microsoft’s existing portfolio of real-time communications products and services.
Awaiting for this product from Microsoft is over, Communications Server 2010, also called Wave 14 – renamed to Microsoft Lync Server 2010. Microsoft has announced that the new 2010 edition has been released to manufacturing (RTM). The official launch event was on November 17th 2010, so I am sure now that those who have Software assurance, will be downloading now and preparing for the installation/migration.
Microsoft Lync Server 2010 communications software offers instant messaging (IM), presence, conferencing, and telephony solutions that can support enterprise-level collaboration requirements. This is only available in 64-bit edition , it requires 64-bit hardware and the 64-bit edition of the Windows Server operating system. Client computers does not required to have 64-bit hardware or software.
Features and capabilities of Microsoft Lync Server 2010 communications software clients in the following categories:
- Contacts and groups
- Instant messaging
- External user support
- Mobile access
- Archiving and compliance
Client Comparison Tables
for the above from Microsoft site, click here
Microsoft Lync 2010 : The default client for Lync Server 2010 meetings. Features include presence, contact management, instant messaging (IM), telephony, and greatly enhanced conferencing. To implement the manager/delegate scenario with Lync 2010, both manager and delegate need to install and use Lync 2010.
Microsoft Lync 2010 Attendee : This is a rich conferencing client that allows users without Lync 2010 installed to fully participate in Lync Server 2010 meetings. Lync 2010 Attendee can be installed on a per-user basis, so you can choose to selectively deploy this client, or you can allow users to download and install it as needed.
Microsoft Lync Web App : This is a web-based conferencing client that supports most Lync 2010 collaboration and sharing features, in addition to presenter meeting controls and dial-in and dial-out voice conferencing. For users who do not have Lync 2010 installed, you can offer this conferencing option when it isn’t practical or possible to install Lync 2010 Attendee. All of the in-meeting features except computer audio, video, and PowerPoint presentations are available to Lync Web App users.
Microsoft Lync Server 2010 Attendant : This is an integrated call management application that enables a receptionist to manage multiple conversations at the same time through rapid call handling, IM, and on-screen routing. Although previous versions of Microsoft Office Communications Server 2007 Attendant supported both manager/delegate scenarios and receptionist scenarios, Microsoft Lync 2010 Attendant is designed for the receptionist scenario only. If necessary, a delegate can use Lync 2010 Attendant to receive calls for the manager, but delegate features are now provided in Lync 2010
Microsoft Lync 2010 Mobile : This provides IM, enhanced presence, and telephony for users in your organization who are connecting from a smartphone or a phone running a Professional edition of Windows Mobile.
Microsoft Lync 2010 Phone Edition : This software that runs on intelligent Internet Protocol (IP) phones (for example, USB-attached phones), and supports placing and receiving calls, enhanced presence, and client audio capabilities for conferences.
The Online Meeting Add-in for Microsoft Lync 2010 : This supports meeting management from within Outlook. This software is installed automatically with Lync 2010
Microsoft now recently announced that there will be an iPhone client available in addition to Windows Mobile for Microsoft Lync Server 2010. Maybe an Android client will be next!!! Good to hear that.
What Lync comes with the new features !!! : There are a lot of enhancements to existing product, on server side definitely there are lot of architectural changes related to Management, Deployment, Bandwidth Resilency and Branch office redundancy mainly for call route., and last but not least Shell command and a basic configuration through web control panel (Commmunications Server Control Panel [CSCP] ).
- Publish your photo using sharepoint and others can view your pictures on their client
- Lync client can now join the Live meeting
- Administrative jobs have to be done through Microsoft Lync Shell Command
- Basic configurations through web control panel
- Branch office resilency call route feature
- Virtualized topology of Microsoft Lync Server 2010
- Active Directory for storing Lync server configurtaion has been moved into a new database server Central Management Server which hosts Central Management Store db. in SQL…but some of the info like SIP URI and phone numbers are still in AD.
- Mediation Server can route calls to Multiple Gateways..sounds nice
- The Lync clients can now be directly updated using windows software update service or windows update.
- ……more to go…i will update you over here
FEW USEFUL LINK
Microsoft Lync Server 2010, Planning Tool Release Candidate..Click here
Microsoft Lync Server 2010, Planning Tool, which is available in a 32-bit edition.
Lync Server 2010 documentation library, Click here
To successfully migrate user and client settings from Microsoft Office Communications Server 2007 R2 to Lync Server 2010 click here
Migration from Office Communications Server 2007 R2 to Lync Server 2010, click here
This is not enough for me..more to come…i will be opening a page dedicated for Lync installation…catch you later..watch my space.
Tech•Ed North America 2010 ( New Orleans, June 7-10th) is done and they disclosed Communications Server “14” features and functionality during the event. You can catch presentation on-demand at Tech•Ed Online..Whats new in Communication 14 Video
Microsoft Communications ‘14’ really delivers on that promise of a more connected experience for people that want to stay plugged in to what’s going on, even when they are not there. The new collab experience is great. Having PowerPoint, the RoundTable view, and IM all in one view is great.