Replace or enhance your PBX with Communications Server 14

The new Microsoft Communications Server 14 product can replace your Phone Branch Exchange (PBX), but if you don’t want to upgrade it can also enhance the existing system.
In fact the Communications Server 14 benefits of audio/video web conferencing, instant messaging and VoIP telephony can all be added as unified communications solutions to your current infrastructure.
With its special interoperability, Communications Server 14 is easy to integrate into Microsoft Office and simple to deploy.
One option is for Communications Server 14 to be connected directly to the Public Switched Telephone Network (PSTN) via SIP Trunking or through a gateway. To do this your phone number is simply transferred to Communications Server 14.
Alternatively Communications Server 14 can be connected to your existing PBX. Using Communicator your system will then ring whenever the PBX rings. This is ideal for mobile or remote workers.
There is also a new Join From” feature where the user’s PBX phone is automatically rung to invite then to join a conference call.
However Microsoft has just seen some 70,000 customers use Communications Server 14 in place of their PBX. With its partners Aastra and Polycom Microsoft is also starting to roll out IP desktop phones as well as optimised USB devices.

5 great partner solutions for Microsoft Communications Server “14”

We can hardly wait for Microsoft Communications Server “14”. In the meantime loads of companies have come up with cool partner solutions. Here's a look at the top five.

1) IP phones

Specially optimised IP phones for Microsoft Communicator “14” have been released by Polycom and Aastra. These products can provide multimedia calling and a streamlined setup with desktop phone control.

2) Integrated PSTN gateway functionality

This allows you to use a variety of products and services with Microsoft Communications Server “14”. These third party gateways will be qualified through the Microsoft Unified Communications Open Interoperability Program.
3) Remote working

For remote working there are local telephony services that could even compensate in the event of a wide area network failure. Check out Dialogic, AudioCodes, Ferrari electronic AG, HP, and NET.

4) Enhanced call resolution.

Aspect Unified IP can enhance first your call resolution while providing additional contact channels. There is also a single interface for bill reports.
5) Real-time analytics

The Nice Systems SmartCenter allows Microsoft Communications Server “14” customers to benefit from real-time analytics so that you can gear your work according to the overall performance of the business.

Microsoft made to pay for OCS patent infringement

Operating systems impresario Microsoft has this week shelled out $200 million for patent infringement.
The lawsuit against Microsoft was brought by the VirnetX Holding Corp, which makes real time communications security technology.
VirnetX Holding Corp alleged in a 2007 lawsuit that Microsoft had infringed upon two US patents in its Microsoft's Office Communication Server and Microsoft's Windows products. The patents were for virtual private network (VPN) technology, among other things.
Although Microsoft dragged out the proceedings by requested a re-examination last year (2009), a jury recently found that they must pay the VirnetX Holding Corp $105.8million. That breaks down as $71.75m for infringing the VPN patent and $34m for infringing a patent for using a secure domain name service to set up a VPN.
When VirnetX also pushed through patent infringement claims for Windows Server 2008 and Windows 7 that figure hit the magic $200 million mark.
Since its big win VirnetX Holding Corp shares have doubled.
Microsoft deputy general and counsel corporate vice president Tom Burt said: "We’re pleased to work with VirnetX to settle these cases successfully. Microsoft looks forward to VirnetX's continued progress as it develops more technologies."
Microsoft will soon be releasing the new Communications Server 14 technology.

Microsoft starts Developer Technology Adoption Program for Communications Server "14"

Among the 15 worldwide companies to be chosen for the program is West at Home, which creates home-based customer contact solutions.

West at Home will now incorporate Communications Server "14" technologies into its product such as presence, VoIP integration with softphones, instant messaging and chat. This will improve company communications while pinpointing each office worker at a specific location for convenience.

That means West at Home clients can benefit from huge cost savings and increased network security, while it also allows to company to easily manage its remote workforce.

Director of Communications Server product management, Yancey Smith, said: "Based on the innovation West displayed using Microsoft Office Communicator 2007, Microsoft chose West at Home to participate in the Technology Adoption Program for Microsoft Communications Server '14'.
“We are eager to see how the company will incorporate our newest product into their successful home-based customer contact solutions."

Microsoft and Nokia release mobile app

Microsoft and Nokia have brought out the Microsoft Communicator Mobile for smartphones.
This free software allows you to use Microsoft Communication Server on Nokia's E series for phone calls, instant messaging and video conferencing.
You can even see whether someone is busy or free to talk just by looking at your contact list.

Microsoft Business division president, Stephen Elop, said: "It is so useful to tell whether someone is in a meeting or contactable just by looking at your phone. If they are in a meeting I can just instant message them instead."
The two companies became partners last year in order to bring out Office software on Nokia handsets.
The software is supported on both the E52 and the E72 models. So far Nokia has shipped more than 10 million smartphones.
For those already on Office Communication Server, using the new app does not require installing new software.

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