By Shelly Marston, Technical Product Manager, Lync
Customers often tell me that meetings are among the most valuable interactions they have, and that Lync’s ability to make online meetings as productive and immersive as in-person meetings is critical to their success. For example, Grant Thornton LLP, one of the largest accounting firms in the U.S. is a Lync 2013 customer and Mike McClain, IT-Director of Technology Strategy & Architecture is a big believer in the value Lync Meetings have delivered to his users, saying, “Employees can quickly start a chat session and then add video or share an application. Our employees have started using Lync for their meetings, and we see they are interacting with their colleagues with video and desktop sharing.”
It is because of this type of feedback that we continue to invest so heavily in this area. Already this year, we’ve added multi-party HD video to Office 365 and Lync Online, extended voice and video over IP to our smartphone and tablet clients, and enhanced our Windows Store app twice with new features.
We’re not slowing down. This week, we’re releasing several more updates to make the Lync Meeting experience even better:
- Turn any conversation on Windows Phone, iPhone, or iPad into a Lync meeting.
- The ability to view meeting content when on Windows Phone and iPhone.
- See Outlook meeting schedules and join Lync Meetings from directly inside the Lync client.
- Enhanced control for presenters/meeting owners with the ability to control meeting interactions with IM mute and Q&A manager.
Later this summer, we expect to see Lync Room System partners begin to ship their products into market, another example of how we are enabling communications from the Living Room to the Boardroom.
Office 365 and Lync Online have already been updated to support these new capabilities, and the July Cumulative Update for Lync Server 2013 provides the necessary enhancements for on-premises customers. Users can take advantage once the new clients are available in their respective app stores over the coming weeks. And if you are not currently using Office 365 or Lync, I encourage you to begin a free trial of Office 365.