Epic new SfB features announced

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There have been some EPIC announcements for Skype for Business at Enterprise Connect 2016. I am continually amazed at the pace Microsoft is developing features in the cloud. The cloud cannot be ignored; voice, video and collaboration is getting closer and closer to becoming a first class offering in the cloud, a likely to exceed whats available on-premises!!

Announcements

  • PSTN Conferencing 60+ countries this month, 100 by June 2016
    • As of March 1 2016, customers in 17 additional countries – Austria, Brazil, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Estonia, Greece, Ireland, Japan, Luxembourg, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia and South Korea
    • 100 countries by the end of June
  • Cloud Connector Edition: Cloud PBX with any Telco – April 2016
    • Cloud Connector Edition allows customers to quickly connect existing phone lines and phone numbers to Office 365 by delivering proven hybrid capabilities as optimised, pre-configured virtual machine images. Cloud Connector will be available worldwide at release
  • Cloud PBX Features: Organisational Auto-Attendant with speech recognition – April 2016
    • New virtual Organisational Auto Attendant in Cloud PBX, enabling customers to use Office 365 for automated handling of business calls
    • Uses Cortana Voice servicesSkype-for-Business-Online-Auto-Attendant-ListSkype-for-Business-Online-Auto-Attendant
  • PSTN Calling: Preview in UK – May 2016
    • With the preview, customers in the UK will be able to trial number acquisition and assignment, inbound and outbound calling, voicemail and other features – all provided by Microsoft and seamlessly integrated as part of Office 365. Office 365 customers in the UK can register for the preview today at the Skype Preview sign-up page.
  • “Project Rigel”: Skype Meeting experience in every meeting room – second half of 2016
    • Convert standard meeting room equipment in to a consistent Skype for Business meeting room system
    • Project Rigel will bring a Skype Meeting experience pioneered on Microsoft Surface Hub to nearly any meeting room with a display or projector
    • It will use Windows 10 devices for center-of-room touch control and Skype for Business online meeting technology to easily connect remote users
    • Hardware partners including Polycom and Logitech will certify elements of their portfolios for use with Project Rigel systems, including the Polycom RealPresence Trio and CX5100, and Logitech ConferenceCam Connect, ConferenceCam GROUP and PTZ Pro Camera. Logitech also plans to deliver a purpose-built smart dock for Project Rigel to seamlessly connect the system elements in a meeting room, while Polycom plans to deliver a portfolio of complete Project Rigel systems. We expect the first systems based on Project Rigel to be available in the second half of 2016Project-Rigel-SildeSurface-Pro-Logitech-Smart-Dock*Surface Pro 4 in Logitech Dock running meeting software
  • Cloud Video Interoperability: Powered by Polycom – second half 2016
    • Polycom will provide an update to its RealPresence Group Series products, which will add both Office 365 integration and a user interface consistent with the Skype Meeting experience
    • 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
  • Unified Management: Management, Reporting and Analytics – second half 2016
    • Powerful management, reporting and analytics tools so that IT admins can understand usage patterns, analyze call quality and quickly troubleshoot issues in both cloud and hybrid Skype for Business deployments via a single pane of glass within the Office 365 admin portalSkype-for-Business-Online-Analytics-1
      Skype-for-Business-Online-Analytics-3 Skype-for-Business-Online-Analytics-2

  • Broadcast Meetings to get real time transcription & translation – second half 2016
    • Real time text translation and verbal transcriptionReal-Time-Transcription
  • Polycom VVX to get Skype for Business user interface
    • Polycom VVX devices will get a familiar Skype for Business user experiencePolycom-VVX-SfB-Interface-Screen

 

Sources

For more information check out the following sources:

 

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