New Lync features available to make meetings even better

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.

Comments (13)
  1. Rob Moses says:

    This is good stuff.  Now if only you could make connecting to Skype users easier for us who do not have those fancy, expensive licensing agreements.  Also a bit better support explaining why 20% of all implementations fail.  Even with community support, we have to write some off as Microsoft dysfunction and use another tool like WebEx.

  2. Anony says:

    The Lync Mobility Client v5.1 updates on iPhone allow users to see the desktop sharing duirng Lync meetings but users can't see the PowerPoint presentation when presented during Lync meeting on iPhone. Is this by design or this feature is still missing in v5.1?

  3. I like the look of the new Q&A feature. Though it would be good to expand on it, allowing attendees to type their questions in during the presentation, marking them as a question. Then at the end of the presentation, the stage changes over to the new Q&A feature, listing all the captured questions, ready for focused discussion and answering.  

  4. Oh wait, I see that you can ask questions at any time during the meeting. Great 🙂

    "Keep in mind that you can switch between the Q&A and Presentation tabs at any time during the meeting. "

  5. Is the Q&A feature available in Lync Online / Office 365?

  6. Fernando G. Guerrero says:

    Not having PSTN dial-in (as well as dial-out) capabilities for Lync Online meetings, with access numbers in most countries, is the biggest limitation to Lync Online adoption.

    Is there any plan to implement this possibility any time soon?

  7. Kevin Powell says:

    Likely I am not searching correctly, however – we are now utilizing Lync to facilitate some online meetings. We used to capture a log of participants under WebEx – info captured were names (login), entry and exit times, and IP addresses. This log was available after the meeting ended to the host on their account. Does Lync 2013 provide an equivalent feature/function? I’ve been searching but could not find any such feature or detailed logs.

  8. New Lync features available to make meetings even better

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