On November 11, 2014, through a blog post, Microsoft announced its intention to rebrand Microsoft Lync to “Microsoft Skype for Business” in the first half of 2015 as part of the product’s next release. This rebrand is in line with Microsoft’s stated vision of moving unified communications from the living room to the boardroom. By bringing unified communications to the masses and building one unified brand name, the transition continues this vision.
Both Skype and MS Lync have transformed the way we communicate with each other and have led the charge in paving the way for video collaboration technology. Skype has broken the distance barrier by bringing people together via video on computers, phones and tablets, while Lync simplifies and unifies the various tools people use to collaboration – e.g. video, audio, online sharing, messaging etc.
Skype for Business will bring the familiar user experience and mass popularity of Skype together with the enterprise security, compliance and control of Microsoft Lync, with an aim to creating “the most loved and trusted communications platform for doing things together.” (Gurdeep Pall, corporate vice president for Skype) While Skype has traditionally been a consumer-only brand, when released later this year, Skype for Business will become the first and foremost business-ready unified communications platform for Microsoft.
Current Skype and MS Lync customers need not be worried about any difficulties in changeover when the rebrand takes place. When Skype for Business becomes available in the first half of 2015, Office 365 users can expect an automatic update, and current Lync Server customers will be able to update relatively easily from Lync Server 2013 to Skype for Business Server in order to take advantage of the new capabilities. No new hardware is required and the process is made as simple as possible for users.
Videocall’s own services that support Microsoft Lync – including MyPresence and ICE – will not be affected by the changeover as there are no immediate changes to the functionality of Lync. If you are not a current Lync user, or looking to change your provider, we have the expertise and the experience to help you integrate Microsoft Lync into your wider video conferencing environment, integrating room, desktop and mobile devices. Click below to learn more about our Lync services.