Skype for Business Online gets more features

Microsoft recently announced some changes and upcoming changes in their cloud version of Skype for Business in Office 365. The product offered in the cloud is becoming more and more on par with the on-premises version.

PSTN Conferencing is now available for purchase in 32 countries around the world. This is a service hosted by Microsoft, and should not be misstaken as the same service previously offered through third parties. This service is available in the E5 plan, or as a seperate addon to other plans.

PSTN Calling goes into a public preview in the UK. We are very glad to see this service reaching Europe, and more countries will follow, stay tuned.

The Skype Meeting experience gets enhanced. During 2016, Microsoft will launch what they call “Project Rigel”. This is a project to extend the meeting experience and make it easier to work and collaborate in Skype Meetings. Polycom, Microsofts #1 hardware partner in this space, has already released the Realpresence Trio. A smart meeting hub, perfectly fit for Skype for Business. They will also during 2016 release two groundbreaking features/products.

  1. The Realpresence Group Series will get an updated firmware with two new features, first it will allow registration directly against Skype for Business Online in Office 365. Second, it will get a new user interface, that look and feels more like Skype for Business. It is very similar to what you see in a Skype for Business Room System.
  2. Polycom will provide a Cloud Video Interoperability service, hosted in the Microsoft cloud, which will enable a wide range of existing VTCs, including Cisco and Polycom systems, to connect to Skype for Business meetings in Office 365 and will include audio, video and content interoperability

We are really looking forward to these new features during 2016!

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