Connections +
News

Microsoft’s Office Communications Server 2007 heads into beta

Microsoft Corp. today opened a private beta of its new enterprise voice communications server, Microsoft Office Com...


December 12, 2006  


Print this page

Microsoft Corp. today opened a private beta of its new enterprise voice communications server, Microsoft Office Communications Server 2007, to 2,500 companies.

The software giant says Office Communications Server will allow companies to integrate Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) technology into existing telephony infrastructure, eliminating the need for expensive network overhauls and also extending the life of existing investments.

The new voice server will also allow workers to launch a phone call from 2007 Microsoft Office applications, such as Office Word 2007, Outlook 2007, or Office Communicator 2007, by clicking on a colleague’s name to determine their availability and initiate a person-to-person or multi-party call.

With native support for session initiation protocol (SIP), Microsoft Office Communications Server and Microsoft Office Communicator, part of the 2007 Microsoft Office system, interoperate with products from partners including Nortel Networks, Alcatel, Avaya, Cisco Systems, LG-Nortel, LTD, Mitel, NEC Phillips, Polycom and Siemens Communications.

With these partnerships, customers will be able to support VoIP using their existing desktop phones, data networks, and time division multiplexing (TDM) or Internet Protocol (IP) private branch exchanges (PBXs), the company said

“The convergence of telecom and data networks is happening rapidly,” said Gurdeep Pall, corporate vice president of Microsoft’s Unified Communications Group. “Software will integrate these two worlds, enabling IT managers to deliver new communications possibilities that include VoIP.”

According to the Gartner Group, “the ultimate driver of VoIP is not merely cost savings, but is in business process integration. Enterprises should evaluate their long-term strategy toward developing IP telephony applications beyond basic telephony, including business application integration.”