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April 14, 2015

Microsoft serves up Skype for Business to Office users

News comes after technical preview launched several weeks ago.

By Alexander Sword

The Skype for Business client is being rolled out as part of the April monthly update for Office 2013.

Writing today on Microsoft‘s Office Blogs site, the Skype for Business team also announced that current users of Lync Online in Office 365 would be moved onto Skype for Business Online in the next few weeks.

Microsoft first announced the technical preview of the product several weeks ago.

The rollout should be completed by the end of May, although customers have the ability to switch between Skype for Business and the traditional Lync user interface. Microsoft has provided guidance for how to manage the interface.

The platform is based on the consumer Skype experience, which now has more than 300 million monthly users worldwide. It is built into Office, meaning that digital communications features such as presence, instant messaging, voice and video calls and online meetings are integrated into the Office experience.

Users can also search the Skype network to connect with users, whether inside or outside of the organisation.

"The Skype for Business client is inspired by the look and feel of Skype but provides the same level of security and control of the Lync client," the Microsoft website comments of the new solution.

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