Skype for Business BLOG
This is taken from Anthony Caragol's Skype for Business Blog
It’s a new world, it’s a new model, SIP is king and Unified Communications has supplanted standalone telephony. We are always connected, we have endless choice for effective communication, we can start large video conferences from a disposable device in our pockets, we live in the future. So why am I so excited about this new high density analog gateway from AudioCodes?
In a perfect world, analog would be dead, but we live in the real world with legacy processes and systems that need to be brought forward.
This week, Andrew Prokop, Director of Vertical Industries at Arrow Systems Integration, featured a blog entitled, High Availability Session Border Controllers Down and Dirty, on his SIP Adventures blog. The full article appeared in No Jitter.
The subject is important and we at AudioCodes have also blogged on this subject in the past.
Recent Microsoft announcements surrounding enterprise voice for Skype for Business in the cloud caused significant waves in the market. Cloud PBX and PSTN calling will have a dramatic impact on the ecosystem. Yet, real parity between the on-premises Skype for Business Server and the online offering will still take a few years and many companies have concerns about making an immediate full transition to the cloud.
- Availability and regulatory issues requiring local PSTN connectivity
- The current Online enterprise voice feature set is limited
- Quality of Service over the open Internet can be problematic
- Customers may not be in a rush to forgo existing contracts and working network devices
- Customers may prefer a gradual migration of users to the cloud
Microsoft understood this and implemented a strategy to offer a solution for this market reality.
Every once in a while, you run across a jewel of knowledge - small but precious and worth saving. During Microsoft Ignite in Chicago this spring I was fortunate to attend a jewel of a presentation by Anthony Caragol, one of a hand-full of Lync/Skype for Business MVPs when he shared his "Top 10" list with a group of administrators and managers.
Anthony's Top 10 List:
- If you decide to go virtual, do so with great caution
- Got QoS? You had better plan on it from end-to-end of your network.
- Not all back-ups are created equal.
- Plan your E911 strategy (while you still can)
- Session Border Controller - your key to security and future flexibility
- Understand what you are replacing
- Don't overlook User Adoption - a lot of hard work may go to waste
- Management Shell Scripts - the window to hidden features
- Monitor everything - or risk being surprised
- Devices - Qualified or Optimized only, please
What would you add to the list? Share your thoughts with Anthony on Twitter @CanthonyCaragol
By Alan Percy, Senior Director of Marketing at AudioCodes
As a manager of Unified Communications, you have many concerns, from security, to survivability and operational costs. You’ve probably been inundated with materials, whitepapers and reports from the vendors and analysts on the topic of cloud-based UC solutions. They promise greater security, scaling, simplified implementation, better reliability through geographic diversity and the opportunity to “pay-as-you-go”.
by Alan D. Percy, Senior Director of Marketing, AudioCodes
Earlier this year I had the opportunity to talk with Matt Jones, Manager of Infrastructure Services at Quaero, a data management and analytics company with offices in Charlotte and Boston, and a third office Bangalore, India.
During our discussion, Matt explained “…that Quaero had gone through a couple different ownership changes, and as a result, were looking for an affordable way to move from Cisco to Lync 2013”. As part of the project, Quaero executives expected to use Lync to tie together their Charlotte and Boston offices, using a paired pool architecture for improved resilience.
by Keven Yorio, CCG Telecom Principle
CCG Telecom has had the opportunity to deploy the newest “Home Run” communications solution from AudioCodes; One Box 365. AudioCodes One Box 365 is a complete Lync Enterprise Voice solution for Office 365 customers with E4 licenses. The features, cost savings and ease of transition have all contributed to a significant enhancement to our business communication. Users have been very pleased with its ease of use and CCG has never doubted the decision to go with One Box 365.
When it comes time to choose a deployment model for Office 365 and Lync voice, the "Easy Button" gets a lot of attention. Through continued refinement and teamwork, partner alliances continue to form with the goal of reducing the complexity for end-customers to migrate to Lync voice, leveraging all the collaboration and communications capabilities included in Office 365.
This week CCG Telecom and G12 announced an exclusive partnership with the intent of continuing the trend toward simplification. This new alliance is based on CCG's experiences learned while buidling their own internal Lync voice deployment.
As noted by Kevin Yorio, Principal of CCG Telecom "This is a game changer...Up to this point, for a small-to-medium enterprises to fully benefit from the promise of Unified Communications, they were looking at multiple vendors, significant capital investment, and bringing on full time staff to manage and support the solution.
By Alan D. Percy, Senior Director of Marketing at AudioCodes
This last week while participating in the Strategic Products and Services (SPS) Sales Summit in Houston, I had the opportunity to spend some time with Quentin Kramer, Director of UC Consulting and Architecture, one of the UC industry technical experts. Having spent a number of years as a UC consultant, Quentin has been engaged on some of the early OCS and Lync deployments. Quentin joined SPS in June of 2013.
by Alan D. Percy
Moving to a SIP-based IP-PBX, Contact Center or Unified Communications system often involves retiring an old and expensive PBX, replacing the desktop legacy phones with new IP Phones. Deploying new IP Phones often results in chaos at the desktop - an opportunity for partners.
Let’s face it, provisioning and installing hundreds of IP Phones can be a tedious process – most IP-based systems offer some form of automatic provisioning system, loading the correct firmware and configuration data into each device as it is installed and activated. “Self-provisioning”, where the end-user is handed a device and asked to do the physical installation and some minimal activation procedure, is a great way to reduce the labor involved with large deployments.