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Skype News & Analysis

Bye-Bye Microsoft Lync, Here Comes Skype For Business

2014-11-12 skype for business.jpgWhen Microsoft paid $8.5 billion in cash for Skype in 2011, it left some scratching their heads where the product would fit in the Microsoft ecosystem. And while Microsoft has since integrated the software into a number of its products, we now have a better sense of its future. As of next year, the Lync name will disappear and be replaced by Skype for Business.

This is not just a rebranding exercise. It involves joining together the Lync infrastructure with Skype, which includes the ability to use on-premises servers, optional integration with external communications networks and the use of the Skype interface on top of Lync.

Can Skype Translator Bust the Language Barrier?

While being interviewed on stage at the Recode Code Conference yesterday in Pailo Alto, Calif., Windows CEO Satya Nadella demonstrated some new technology the company has been working on. 

Skype Translator, as it is currently known, will give Skype near real time translation capabilities. The program -- which will be available on all devices -- currently supports 40 languages and is slated for consumer beta later this year. 

Nadella demonstrated the program in a phone call with Gurdeep Singh Pall, corporate vice president of Skype, who spoke German while Skype translated. Nadella spoke English, which was, similarly, translated by Skype for the benefit of Pall. 

In a blog post addressing the first public demonstration of the forthcoming technology, Pall had this to say: 

In our industry, we often talk about pursuing big, bold dreams, and how we're limited only by the power of our imaginations. Skype Translator is one of those endeavors, and I look forward to keeping you apprised of our journey to break down another barrier to human productivity and connection." 

Ex-Skype CMO: Leadspace is the 'Industry's Best Kept Secret'

customer experience, Former Skype, Salesforce CMO on B2B Marketing Challenges

It’s pretty cool being the chief marketing officer of a company whose product owns a third of the international market in its space. 

We know. We asked. 

Doug Bewsher led the marketing teams at Skype as the instant messaging and video-chat service grew to 750 million users, including owning a third of all international calls. Microsoft bought it in 2011 for $8.5 billion.

“Skype is one of the great success stories in terms of being one of the most pervasive brands on the Internet,” said Bewsher, whose appointment as CEO of B2B social demand generation provider Leadspace became official today. “… We had a vision of breaking down barriers to communication.”

Document Mgt Roll-up: Mostly SharePoint #SPC14

You can argue it if you want, but this week was all about SharePoint -- and little about Microsoft Dynamics CRM and AX. In fact, as one of our editors pointed out, there’s more SharePoint than you could shake a stick at — largely as a result of the SharePoint Conference 2014 in Las Vegas.

In no particular order, here are some of the items that either slipped under the radar or which caught our attention. There is also some mention of Microsoft Convergence Dynamics.

So Bill Clinton is a SharePoint Expert? #SPC14

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It's hard to think of former President Bill Clinton as a SharePoint geek. But Clinton is always full of surprises — whether it's a spur-of-the-moment  trip to Burma or an appearance at the Golden Globes.

So maybe his selection as the keynote speaker at SharePoint Conference 2014 isn't as random as it seems. Besides, conferences have long histories of selecting keynote speakers with little or no connection to the topics at hand.

Another One Bites the Dust: RIP Microsoft Exchange Server 2003

Along with Windows XP, life support is running out for Microsoft Exchange Server 2003. If your business is still running this 11-year-old mail, contact and calendar server, prepare to face a black hole when it comes to future problems.

With many businesses already using one of the server's three future generations — and with alternatives like Zimbra, Novell GroupWise and others — what will laggards pick when they finally move on? Cloud-based office solutions are just one appealing option.

Microsoft, Snapchat Downplay Cyberattacks

Skype Reportedly Hacked + Snapchat User Data LeakedTwo popular online services are off to a good start in 2014 — for hackers, anyway. 

One cyberattack involved Skype, the Internet calls service owned by Microsoft. The service's Twitter and Facebook accounts, along with the service's blog page, displayed messages Wednesday purporting to be from the Syrian Electronic Army.

The other involved Snapchat, the Venice, Calif.- based messaging service. Hackers compromised about 4.6 million Snapchat accounts — and posted the phone numbers of affected users to a downloadable database on a website called snapchatdb.info.

Toss Your iPhone: Windows Phones Could Rule the Enterprise by 2015

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Despite iOS and Android's huge consumer mobile sales and the rise of bring your own device (BYOD) policies, Microsoft still has a shot at becoming the dominant force in mobile enterprise. 

Business connectivity, SharePoint and Office integration for Windows Phone 8 will earn it many friends in the enterprise. And Microsoft will place increasing emphasis on its mobile offering as the desktop market continues to stagnate. As sales rise, developers are returning to populate the app marketplace.

5 Things to Banish from Digital Offices

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Every day something in the digital office annoys a few hundred million workers. Not enough to stage a mass revolt, but just enough to ferment our collective disdain for technology.

Here's a wish list of things those of us at CMSWire would like developers, vendors and IT specialists to fix in 2014. Their cooperation will help save our souls from everything from the inevitable cloud outage to expletives over the latest snafu and personalized ring tones that sound like moose calls. 

Microsoft Tries to Lure Small Business from Gmail, But What About Yahoo Mail?

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Boasting claims of improved productivity and communications, Microsoft is offering a new Outlook.com tool to help small business users switch from Gmail.

Microsoft might also want to offer a similar feature for Yahoo Mail customers after recent problems that just seem to be growing worse. 

5 Major Differences Between Xbox One and PlayStation 4

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The tech pages have been buzzing with gaming news in recent weeks, thanks to new consoles from Microsoft and Sony. But if you're not a loyal fan, which one should you choose? 

These five factors — and some simple truths the manufacturers probably don't want you to know — could sway your buying decision.

Fleep Looks to Take on Skype with Hybrid Email Chat Tool

customer experience: fleep

There’s a new communication service in town that is designed to make email and instant messaging more interconnected.

Microsoft Offers Outlook.com, Skype Integration in US, Canada, 4 Other Countries

Microsoft Outlook.com Integration with Skype Microsoft Outlook.com Integration with Skype

Microsoft has announced that the integration of Skype and Outlook.com is now finally available in the US and Canada, as well as a number of European countries, having announced a preview version of the integration in the UK at the end of April. 

Skype Could Crush All Before It With Prime Placement In Windows 8.1

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Skype will replace the Messenger app in Windows 8.1, making it Windows' centerpiece for communicating across all devices. Assuming Windows 8.1 takes over the desktop world, where does that leave other messaging services?

Skype Updates iPad App; Some Features Only Available on iPad 4

customer experience: skype ipad app HD video callingSkype introduces a few new features with its most recent iPad app update; one of which will be especially useful for those who use the video calling function.

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