Microsoft unveiled many new features in Skype for Business at Atlanta Ignite 2016. Lots of new features and enhancement specific to Skype for Business client where main focus area was Mac/iOS client. Below are the list of features which enhanced end user productivity across the multiple mobile platform.
These features are going to change the Skype for Business end user experience, it will work just like a phone.
Licensing is not an easy part for everyone but this post will help you a bit to understand the Skype for Business licensing. To design or implement any solution makes more sense if solution cost justify the ROI. Skype for Business has different types of licensing.
Server License: Skype for Business Server 2015 has same licensing concept as it was with Lync Server 2013. There is only one type of server license which means there is no separate license for Standard Edition or Enterprise edition. License only applicable to Front End Servers. If you have 4 Standard Edition Server, you need 4 server license or if you have 1 Enterprise Edition Front End pool with 4 Front End server then also you need only 4 server license. Apart from Front End server role, none of the Skype for Business Server roles need license.
Client License: Skype for Business 2015 has three different types of client licenses.
Client Access License (CALs): Skype for Business Server CALs are required to use Skype for Business Server. Skype for Business has three different types of CALs which provides different kind of functionalities. Standard CALs are basic requirement for other CALs.
- Standard CALs: Standard CALs are basic client access license which enable users or devices to connect Skype for Business Server and provides basic features such as IM/Presence, peer-to-peer VOIP and HD Video, and skype connectivity.
- Enterprise CALs: Enterprise CALs provide additional features to Standard CALs and Standard CALs are prerequisite for Enterprise CALs. It provides scheduled and impromptu meetings with audio and video calling, desktop and application sharing, and dial-in conferencing on mobile phones, tablets, PC and Mac.
- Plus CALs: Plus CALs are additional CALs and required only for Enterprise Voice features, and Standard CALs are prerequisite for Plus CALs. It enables PSTN in/out, emergency calling, and other enterprise-grade phone features.
Skype for Business Server 2015 supports several types of clients including Lync 2013 and few Lync 2010 clients. Many clients such as Skype for Business 2015, Skype for Business Web App and Skype for Business Web Scheduler has been launched as of now while rest of the clients will be launched later in 2015. Below list shows available clients for Skype for Business Server 2015.
- Skype for Business 2015
- Skype for Business 2015 Web App
- Skype for Business 2015 Web Scheduler
- Skype for Business 2015 Mobile (later in 2015)
- Lync 2013
- Lync 2013 Phone Edition
- Lync 2013 Mobile
- Lync Windows Store app
- Lync for Mac 2011
- Lync 2010 Mobile
- Lync Phone Edition
- Lync 2010 Attendant
- Communicator for Mac 2011
Skype for Business 2015: Skype for Business is the full-featured client for Skype for Business Server 2015. It can be installed on your desktop or laptop and its interface has been fully redesigned and includes newly integrated features, such as Call Monitor, Skype directory integration, rate my call and emoticons.
Meeting Add-in for Skype for Business: The Online Meeting Add-in for Skype for Business supports meeting management from within Microsoft Outlook messaging and collaboration client. The Online Meeting Add-in for Skype for Business software installs automatically with Skype for Business.
Skype for Business Web Scheduler: Skype for Business Web Scheduler is a web-based meeting scheduling and management tool for users who don’t have access to Microsoft Outlook, or who are on an operating system not based on Windows. With Skype for Business Web Scheduler, users can create new meetings, modify existing meetings, and send invitations using their preferred email program.
Skype for Business Web App: Skype for Business Web App is the web-based conferencing client for Skype for Business Server 2015 meetings. Meeting participants have access to all collaboration and sharing features and presenter meeting controls. If Skype for Business is not installed on a user’s computer and the user clicks a meeting link in a meeting request, Skype for Business Web App opens. You can also configure the Meeting Join page to allow users to join meetings by using previous versions of clients. Skype for Business Web App is the client of choice for participants outside your organization. With Skype for Business Web App, no local client installation is required, although audio, video, and sharing features require installation of a plug-in during first use.
Skype for Business 2015 clients provide many rich set of features which improve the user experience. Below is the list of new and enhanced features.
- Enhanced user interface
- Me area
- Contact card
- Privacy enhancements
- Sharing features enhancements
- Improved meeting join experience
- Conferencing attendance scheduling
- PSTN dial-in conferencing enhancements
- Call via work
- Video enhancements – Multiparty video
- Administrative enhancements
- Call park and retrieve
- Pre-call and in-call diagnostics
- Improved device handling
- Emergency service support
- Call handling
- Enhanced phone experience
- Office and windows integration
- Rate my call