Microsoft formally launched Lync 2010, the rebranding of its Office Communications software suite, with a New York City event Nov. 17. In addition to providing business users with a software platform for enterprise telephony, instant messaging, and video and audio conferencing, Lync can also interface with Microsoft products such as Windows Live Messenger and its new Kinect hands-free game controller--potentially expanding the platform's viability to the consumer segment.
Research firm Forrester estimates that the overall unified-communications market will be worth $14.5 billion by 2015, making it a ripe target for tech giants like Microsoft looking to expand their workplace reach. Lync also operates in conjunction with software platforms such as Microsoft Office, SharePoint, and Exchange; users can collectively input on a PowerPoint document while engaged in a conference call, for instance.
Microsoft's Lync Website offers a free trial of the software, which will be available Dec. 1. Mobile clients for the Apple iPhone, Nokia phones and Windows Phone 7 are expected within the year, although Microsoft executives have been reluctant to discuss about clients for other platforms such as Research In Motion's BlackBerry.
For more, read the eWeek article Microsoft Launches Lync 2010 Targeting Enterprise Communications.