The Benefits of Video Conferencing and Hosted Microsoft Lync

By Mark Stubbles on behalf of Interact Technology

I think it is fair to say that most people in this day and age have used some form of video conferencing software; video conferencing is also known as video collaboration and it uses two-way video and audio technologies to bring together different people located in different locations around the world.

Skype is probably the most popular video conferencing platform for home users who use it to connect with friends and loved ones in other parts of the country or around the world; Skype has become so popular that the software even comes preloaded on most new laptops and netbooks. This technology has really made the world a smaller place, it is a much better way to connect than conventional phone calls and it is usually more cost effective or even free, it is obviously much more practical and far cheaper than flying too.

Microsoft Lync can […] enable more people to connect more cost effectively at one time [and] it can promote a more professional image to clients and staff.

It is not just home users that use video conferencing though, more and more business users are turning to this technology too. Video conferencing software and technology can seriously reduce staff travel expenses, improve sales and staff communication at all levels in locations all around the world.

Since Skype is usually free, many businesses tend to utilise it but using a platform/software such as Microsoft Lync can be more beneficial, enable more people to connect more cost effectively at one time. It can promote a more professional image to clients and staff, in this post we will discuss some of the features and benefits that Microsoft Lync offers.

Microsoft says on their site “The new Lync is our boldest and best Lync release ever, with innovation across the board. Lync has always made it easy for people to communicate wherever they are, but we’re making it even better with new and improved features.”

“Lync enables users to communicate securely anywhere they have network connectivity, and automatically adapts to network conditions.”

Small to medium sized companies will usually find a hosted Microsoft Lync solution to be effective; this kind of solution will provide a single hosted interface that can unite PSTN, SIP voice communications, instant messaging, audio and video conferencing. Lync unites all of these technologies into a richer, more simplified solution in one client making it simple to switch between the different types of supported communication.

This type of Lync solution can be used to extend and even replace traditional PBX systems. A hosted solution offers lower initial costs it means that companies don’t need to invest in communications hardware and they don’t need to maintain this very expensive equipment on an on-going basis, the lack of maintenance required means that no specialist staff need to be employed and that both time and money are saved.

Scalability of a Hosted Solution

This type of Lync solution can be used to extend and even replace traditional PBX systems.

A hosted solution is perfect for a small to medium sized businesses; besides the lower initial costs of ownership a hosted solution enables a client to easily scale the service up or down as their business needs demand it and that these changes can be deployed more rapidly without disruption to the clients business. This means the business can take advantage of opportunities as they arrive and that the businesses cash flow can be forecasted more effectively, providing the business with a healthier balance sheet.

Why should you invest in Lync?

To put it simply Lync makes communication easier, the main benefit of Lync is the integration it offers. It integrates and works on a wide variety of devices such as Microsoft Windows, Windows Phone, Apple iPad, Apple iPhone, Android phone and tablet devices. The Windows 8 and Windows RT app provide a seamless touch-first experience; users can join a conference on any of the supported devices listed above with just one click.

Lync connects with Skype and allows browser-based access too this means that the people you wish to connect and conference with do not need to download any special software or pay for subscriptions, etc. all they need is an internet or network connection. Virtually meet, see, interact and conference with up to five participants at once, share notes and other documents during your conference sessions using OneNote.

For more information about Microsoft Lync or any other voice and video solutions, speak to Interact.

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