Microsoft today launched of Lync -- the next generation of Office Communications Server.
Microsoft Lync 2010 integrates enterprise voice, instant messaging and web, audio and video conferencing into a connected single communications experience. The platform can make every engagement a virtual face-to-face meeting, because any interaction can include video and audio conferencing, application and desktop sharing, instant messaging, and telephony. People can also stay connected to others on a wide range of devices while away from the office and manage their communications and calls in new ways, such as moving a call from a PC to a mobile device while leaving the office without disrupting the conversation.
Lync has been designed from the ground up to work with Microsoft Office, SharePoint and Exchange.
Lync 2010 offers a unified experience, allowing users to switch from an instant message, to a voice call, to a video call, to a meeting or to a shared whiteboard session. It offers an one-click web conference through Outlook, or high-definition voice and video conversation with any Windows Live Messenger user. When someone has poor audio on a conference call or lots of background noise, Lync will identify which phone to mute to improve quality. Users are also able to switch between their head-set and phone in the middle of a call with device switching. The same head-set can be used to make a phone call using WiFi on an airplane.
Microsoft expects Lync-based solutions to be developed across a wide spectrum of PCs, browsers and mobile devices in 2011 and beyond.
Lync Online will be also available in 2011 with the general availability of Office 365. Lync Online will be aimed at users who want to move to the cloud to take advantage of Microsoft?s broader Office365 service. Microsoft's online voice capabilities will be available in 2011.