Today, Microsoft Corp. debuted Microsoft Office Communications Server 2007 Release 2 (R2), an update to the award-winning Microsoft Office Communications Server 2007. Microsoft representatives demonstrated the new release for the first time before an audience of telecom and IT professionals at the VoiceCon tradeshow in Amsterdam. Customers will be able to purchase the release, currently in private beta testing, beginning in February 2009.
Key new features of Office Communications Server 2007 R2 include the following:
• Dial-in audioconferencing. Office Communications Server 2007 R2 enables businesses to eliminate costly audioconferencing services with an on-premise audioconferencing bridge that is managed by IT as part of the overall communications infrastructure.
• Desktop sharing. This feature enables users to seamlessly share their desktop, initiate audio communications and collaborate with others outside the organization on PC, Macintosh or Linux platforms through a Web-based interface.
• Persistent group chat. This enables geographically dispersed teams to collaborate with each other by participating in topic-based discussions that persist over time. This application provides users with a list of all available chat rooms and topics, periodically archives discussions in an XML file format that meets compliance regulations, provides tools to search the entire history of discussion on a given topic, and offers filters and alerts to notify someone of new posts or topics on a particular topic.
Enhanced Voice and Mobility
• Attendant console and delegation. This allows receptionists, team secretaries and others to manage calls and conferences on behalf of other users, set up workflows to route calls, and manage higher volumes of incoming communications through a software-based interface.
• Session Initiation Protocol trunking. This feature enables businesses to reduce costs by setting up a direct VoIP connection between an Internet telephony service provider and Office Communicator 2007 without requiring on-premise gateways.
• Response group.A workflow design application manages incoming calls based on user-configured rules (e.g., round-robin, longest idle, simultaneous), providing a simple-to-use basic engine for call treatment, routing and queuing.
• Mobility and single-number reach. This extends Microsoft Office Communicator Mobile functionality to Nokia S40, Motorola RAZR, Blackberry and Windows Mobile platforms, allowing users to communicate using presence, IM and voice as an extension of their PBX from a unified client.*
New Developer Tools for Business Applications
• APIs and Visual Studio integration. This improves the efficiency of everyday business processes by enabling businesses to build communications-enabled applications and embed communications into business applications.
Join Us for Launch
Office Communications Server 2007 R2 will launch in a worldwide online event Feb. 3, 2009. Those interested can register to participate in the launch at
Unified Communications — On the Road
Microsoft will share the experiences of companies such as eircom and Royal Dutch Shell with European businesses at a series of road shows in December this year. Microsoft experts and executive briefers will demonstrate how Microsoft unified communications has the ability to fundamentally change the way that businesses work. Highlights include the following:
• How unified communication breaks down cross-functional silos
• Best practices — Microsoft’s internal deployment
• Why UC is the platform (not the network)
• Demonstrations of and insight into Office Communications Server 2007 R2
• The real story on interoperability
Office Communications Server 2007 R2 road shows will be held in Zurich (Dec. 8–9), and Madrid and Rome (Dec. 11–12). More information about Microsoft Office Communications Server 2007 R2 is available at http://www.microsoft.com/uc/products/ocs2007.mspx.