As Microsoft continues to roll Skype for Business into Microsoft Teams, they are getting better with more improvements and updates. Let’s see where they are at as of today:

New Business Admin Center

To allow IT administrators to easily manage the various aspects of Teams and Skype for Business services, Microsoft announced a new roll-out of Microsoft Teams & Skype for Business Admin Center.

This new center provides you with a unified experience to manage both services under one roof with additional functionality such as the ability to manage messaging settings on a user level. You will also be able to access the Call Analytics and Call Quality Dashboard right from the same platform.

Office 365 security and compliance center

Now, under specific users or groups, your admins have the ability to proactively make the decision of keeping and/or deleting certain content including conversations, chats, and channel messages based on a time duration. This will help your organization stay compliant with regulatory policies.

More new features available in this release include:

  • Ability to assign policies and configure your users
  • Guest access and account switching on iOS and Android mobile
  • Ability to manage federation settings
  • Ability to configure dial-in numbers and settings
  • More languages support – Indonesian, Romanian, and Vietnamese

Are you using Microsoft Teams and Skype for Business? Are you curious about how they are comparing to other hosted services in terms of service plans, costs, features, etc.? Click here to see a comprehensive comparison!

Microsoft announced that they will discontinue Office Live Meeting completely by end of this year.

Live Meeting is a popular online collaboration and web conferencing service that empowers businesses to conduct the real-time and interactive presentation.

Migrating to Skype for Business & Skype

The company is planning to migrate all data and applications from Live Meeting into Skype for Business and Skype Meeting Broadcast. Most of the features that were seen in Live Meeting have already been migrated to Skype for Business and Skype Meeting Broadcast and there are some new upgrades available such as a larger attendee scale.

Live Meeting users are encouraged to begin transferring their system to other similar solutions no later than December 31st, 2017, at which time Microsoft will fully close the Live Meeting service.

You can find the guides for transitioning to Skype here.

Other Web Collaboration Options

There are a lot of easy web collaboration tools available on the market that will provide you with even better interactive video conferencing, shared drive, and team collaboration.

Check out more VoIP service features here to learn how you can keep your employees connected in one system, regardless of their location. Call one of our VoIP experts at 1-800-398-8647 to get a free consultation!

image-skyeSept. 27, 2017 – Microsoft announced at the big Ignite conference in Orlando that Microsoft Teams will replace Skype for Business soon.skype-for-business

The Teams will become a one-stop-shop in Office 365 for all of your conferencing need and  it will be covering features including making inbound and outbound calls to PSTN numbers, call transfers and voicemail. Teams meetings now have audio conferencing capabilities which allows you to join a meeting simply by dialing a phone number.

For more information, visit Microsoft Teams.

Not sure what that might affect your business? Call one of our VoIP Experts at 1-800-398-8647 and talk to them about more stable service options.

skype-tipsSkype is nothing new to most of us. We all love how simple and straightforward Skype is. It probably only takes you less than 30 minutes from downloading to dialing your first call through Skype.

You think you already know all about Skype? Well, there might still be some features that will surprise you! Check out the 7 Skype tips and tricks in this post to see what they are!

#1 How to Make Calls from Skype Contact Listskype-5

Do you know you can start a Skype call by double-clicking on a contact? Here’s how:

  1. Click Tools >> Options >> General Settings
  2. Check the box: When I double-click on a contact start a call

Pretty easy, huh?

#2 How to Hide or Show the Skype Moving Pencil

You must have noticed that when you are chatting with someone on Skype message, there’s a pencil image moving showing you that someone is editing his/her message. Not a big fan of this feature? No problem. Here’s how you can hide it and have more privacy:

  1. Click Tools >> Options >> IM & SMS >> IM Settings >> Show Advanced Options
  2. Uncheck the box: Show when I am typing

 

#3 How to Clear Skype Chat History

Erase your chat history in Skype is easy. Just follow these two steps:

  1. Click Tools >> Options >> IM & SMS
  2. Click IM Settings >> Show Advanced Options >> Clear History

Be aware though, once you clear your history, you can’t restore the messages! So think twice before you hit the button! You can also adjust the time frame that you want to keep your history by selecting the drop-down menu.

#4 How to Get Keyword Notifications on Skype

Too many messages that you don’t have time to read them all? Use Skype’s Keyword Notifications to get notified only when certain words are mentioned in the IM window. Here’s how:

  1. Click Conversation menu>> Notification Settings
  2. Select the radio button: Notify me only if these words are mentioned.
  3. Type in the keywords you’d like to receive notifications

Now you can sit back and focus on your work!

caller-id#5 How to Set Up the Caller ID on Skype

Caller ID shows your phone number when you make a call. You might want to set up this so people recognize you when you make Skype calls to landlines or mobile numbers.

  1. Click Skype menu >> Account. You will see a web page where you get more call related information
  2. Click Caller ID and select Country/Region and type in your Phone number.
  3. Click Verify Number.

You are all set. Test it out!

#6 How to Edit Your Last Message on Skype

Oops, made a mistake in the message that you just sent? Press the Up Arrow Key on your keyboard, Skype will automatically copy the text you sent and put in your chat box where you can correct and re-send.

 

#7 How to Transfer Skype Account Contacts

call-transfer Need a new Skype account but feel it’s tedious to re-add in all your contacts again? Let Skype do the work for you! You can easily backup all of your contacts from the old account and simply transfer them into the new one within minutes.

  1. Sign in your old account. Click Contacts and go to Advanced and select Backup Contacts to File.  
  2. Sign in your new account and click Contacts>> Advanced>> Restore Contacts from File

There you have it! Are you using any of the tricks I mentioned? What Skype features do you like to see? A hosted VoIP Service has a lot of useful and more advanced features, be sure to check it out too!cloudspan banner

skype4bSkype for Business is nothing new to small businesses looking for a basic VoIP system with extremely low rates. You may already know the basic capabilities of Skype for Business such as video/audio calls, instant messages, and file sharing. However, Skype for Business can so a lot more than just that! It also covers a wide range of useful business features that many businesses use every day. Let’s check it out!

7 Skype for Business Features You Won’t Want to Miss

#1 Microsoft Office Suite includes the latest Office applications for your PC and Mac. The suite covers Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook and more. You can easily format or edit information with the right tools and create documents during a meeting.

#2 Click to Join online meetings. With just a touch or click on your screen, you can host online meetings with audio and/ or video over the Internet.
#3 PSTN Conferencing allows employees to attend meetings using a standard traditional telephone. Simply dial a local access number from a landline or dial out from a meeting to add in others.

#4 Meeting Broadcast provides the tools necessary to plan and produce large virtual meetings for up to 10, 000 attendees. Meetings include real-time polling and sentiment tracking. (Very useful for big announcements!)

#5 Modern Voice with Cloud PBX enables enterprises to switch from the old PBX systems to the Cloud system, where Office 365 can handle all of the communication management duties under one roof. Make, receive, and transfer calls anywhere without using a traditional phone system.

#6 Advanced Information Protection: The data loss prevention (DLP) and encryption, both protect your important information across Exchange Online, Skype for Business, and SharePoint Online. This will keep your content safe in the email, IM and meetings, and team sites.

#7 Analytics Tools includes live dashboards and interactive reports where non-technical users can visualize and analyze data efficiently. This feature gives you organizational insights based on information across Office 365.

See more features here!

Have questions about Skype for Business? Look for the best Skype for Business Equipment? Call one of our VoIP experts at 1-800-398-VoIP.

skype 4bAre you a Skype for Business (SFB) user but not using SFB-optimized IP phones? Then, you are really missing out!

Using a SFB optimized VoIP phone can not only increase your call quality, but also make your work more effective and efficient. In this multi-media world, communication is more than just talking on the phone. Outlook integration, Instant Message, Voicemail and Videomail are just some of the useful features countless professionals are benefiting from using an optimized IP phone.

So, follow us to explore the best SFB-optimized IP phones that can give you a better communication experience!

 

The Polycom VVX600

Polycom VVX 600

The Polycom VVX600 is one of the most popular options for Skype for Business users. Built with executives and managers in mind, the VVX600 features a 4.3” gesture based, multi-touch cable capacitive touchscreen LCD display. This powerful solution comes with the capabilities to manage Microsoft Exchange Calendars, receive meeting reminders/ alters, access the corporate directory and Instant Messaging/presence status, etc. With the web-based, intuitive configuration tool, users can deploy and manage the system easily and quickly. Click here to download the Polycom VVX 600 Datasheet.

Core Features:

  • 16 line registrations
  • 4.3in LCD gesture based, multi-touch capable capacitive touchscreen
  • Voicemail and video mail support
  • Dual USB ports (2.0 compliant) for media and storage applications
  • Dedicated RJ-9 headset port with EHS support
  • Two-port Gigabit Ethernet switch

 

The Mitel MiVoice 6725mitel-6725

Choose the Mitel MiVoice 6725 if you are looking for a full featured IP phone optimized for use with Skype for Business. The MiVoice 6725, a certified Skype for Business compatible VoIP phone, offers full color 3.5” LCD screen and a separate Unified Communications (UC) presence icon for direct access to features and presence indications in Lync. Its exceptional voice quality allows you to hear and be heard clearly. Professionals love its easy integration with Lync destop, Outlook calendar, contact, click to dial and much more!

Popular Features and Functions of Mitel MiVoice 6725:

  • Embedded Microsoft Lync 2010 Phone Edition Software
  • Color Screen
  • Dual Gigabit Ethernet ports
  • Direct desktop integration
  • Personal presence indicator
  • USB interfaces
  • Speakerphone

 

The Snom D725

snom 725

The last but not the least is the Snom D725. Coming with 12 identities and 18 two-color multi-purpose LED keys, the Snom D725 is a flexible Skype for Business certified solution designed for busy multi-taskers just like you. If is a Gigabit VoIP phone that offers wideband HD audio, PoE, USB port and more. The D7 expansion module and the 18 programmable keys give users the highest flexibility to meet their business needs. Access to the Snom D725 datasheet. Watch the product video below to learn more!

The Snom D725 Features and Functions:

  • 4-line B/W display
  • 18 LED function keys
  • 12 SIP identities
  • Wideband audio
  • Hands-free operation
  • Power over Ethernet (PoE)

What kind of IP phone are you using for your Skype for Business? What’s your experience? Visit our website or contact one of our VoIP experts at 1-800-398-VoIP to learn more Skype for Business optimized IP phone options today.

use-skype-without-signing-upI haven’t been using Skype to talk with my family in a while because it’s always a pain for me to explain how to download and set up a Skype account over LINE message before we start talking. (Not to mention that my mother never remembers her passwords. faceSo, the nightmare never ends.)

If you are facing the same issue, you will be as excited as I am now! Skype now allows users to start a conversation over Skype without downloading or signing up an account. Is it possible? Yes, it is! Let me tell you how.

 

How to Use Skype Without Signing Up for an Account?

With only 4 simple steps, you will be ready to chat. (It took me less than 5 minutes to set up.)

  1. Go to Skype.com
  2. Tap Start a conversation and add your name
  3. Share the link provided with the contacts you want to chat with via email or social networks
  4. Ask your contacts to click on the link to join your conversation right away!

This new function applies to both individuals and a group. What’s even better is that you can still take advantage of all Skype’s features such as instant messaging, voice/ video calls, and screen/ file sharing. You are able to invite up to 300 people in chat and up to 25 people on a voice or video chat all for free.

Sounds awesome, but be aware that your conversation will only last for 24 hours and you need to use a web browser from a computer to start as a Guest. After 24 hours, you will need to sign up an account to continue.

Are you ready to try it by yourself? Go to Skype.com now and share with us what you think!

SKYPE Whether you are a current Skype user or you are just about to step into the Skype world, you may have already experienced or heard a lot of complaints about not being about to get Skype to function smoothly during the calls.

In the blog: Improve Skype for Business Audio/Video Quality, we discussed the top factors that affect your Skype call quality. Choosing an ideal Skype-optimized phone is the first step to building a satisfactory Skype call experience.

Here we highlight the best Skype ready phones at VoIP Supply that will take your communication to the next level!

 

What are the Best Skype Ready Phones?

grandstream-gxv-3240The Grandstream GXV 3240 is one of the most popular Skype phones that is designed for all size companies and Android smartphone users. It is a 6-line multimedia Gigabit VoIP video phone that comes with a 3-way video conferencing, a tiltable CMOS camera and HD audio/ voice.

Combined the functionality of a multimedia platform with a 6-line video phone for an all-in-one voice, video, data, and mobility solution, the Grandstream GXV 3240 is the most powerful solution for users connecting from different channels.

Popular Features:

  • 6 lines with up to 6 SIP accounts including FREE IPVideoTalk account with video mail
  • Phonebook with up to 1000 contacts and call history with up to 1000 records
  • Up to 6-way audio conference and 3-way video conference
  • Dual switched auto-sensing 10/100/1000 Mbps network ports
  • Wi-Fi (802.11b/g/n), PoE+, Bluetooth, USB, SD, HDMI, EHS with Plantronics headsets support

 

Snom MeetingPointThe Konftel 300 Conference Phone

If you are looking for a solution that allows you to set up multi-party calls easily and quality, the Konftel 300 Conference Phone will fit in just right. With the Konftel 300, you can easily combine or switch between connections to analog lines, mobile phones, or PCs at the drop of a hat.

Covering an area of up to 323 feet (or 10 people), the Konftel 300 also enables wireless headsets and external loudspeakers/ microphones connection to ensure that you hear and are being heard loud and clear.

Popular Features:

  • A new generation of OmniSound audio technology
  • USB connection for VoIP calls
  • The line mode makes it easy for you to combine and switch between connectivity technologies (analog, USB, GSM)
  • The conference guide makes it easy to set up multiparty calls
  • Record and listen to your meetings with an SD memory card.

 

The Polycom VVX 500 MS Skype for Business Edition is another great choice for people who are searching for a dependable, multi-tasking business media phone that can keep you up with your busy work schedule.

polycom-vvx500The Polycom VVX 500 is a Lync-licensed 12 SIP line IP phone with HD Voice featuring a 3.5 inch TFT color touchscreen, 2 USB 2.0 ports for multiple media uses and storage applications. Users benefit from useful functionalities such as managing exchange calendars and contacts on the phone, meeting reminders and extend PC desktop to include the VVX 500’s phone screen to increase work efficiency.

Popular Features:

  • Gesture-based, multitouch-capable, capacitive touchscreen
  • 3.5-in TFT LCD display at QVGA (320×240 pixel) resolution, 4:3 aspect ratio
  • Streaming media video playback
  • Screensaver and digital picture frame mode
  • On-screen virtual keyboard
  • Voicemail and video mail support
  • Dual USB ports (2.0 compliant) for media and storage applications

See More Skype Phones!

When it comes to Skype for Business, a common question we often hear is – we already have Skype account. Why do we need Skype for Business?

As you may know, Skype for Business is the business version of regular Skype that offers more office applications for business usage. In this blog, we will focus on three key benefits to explain why you should choose Skype for Business over regular Skype: Cloud PBX, Expanded Capability, Stricter Security Control. Continue reading

skype

Whether you have decided to deploy Skype for Business as your communication system or you are still evaluating to see if it meets your demands, checking Skype for Business requirements is an important step to help you sort things out and make a wise decision. Let’s take a look at what you need to prepare when deploying Skype for Business.

 

Choose Your Ideal Plan

The first step is to decide which plan you want to deploy. Customers can choose to purchase a standalone plan or as part of Office 365 plans which comes with Office applications, email, file storage and sharing, and more. Skype for Business provides multiple plans for different business levels with a rate ranging from $2 user/month to $12.50 user/ month.

  • Online Plan 1 and 2-Skype for Business online meetings
    office
  • Office 365 Business Essentials- Include online versions of Office and email
  • Office 365 Business Premium- Include Office applications for desktop and email

Learn detailed plans comparison here.

 

Meet The Requirements

Once you have decided on your ideal plan, it’s time to get geared up for it. To maximize the full potential of Skype for Business capability, you would need to meet their requirements. Here is the list of the recommended components:

  • CPU: 64-bit dual processor, hex-core, 2.26 gigahertz (GHz) or higher
  • Memory: 32 gigabytes (GB)
  • Disk: 8 or more 10000 RPM hard disk drives with at least 72 GB free disk space OR Solid state drives able to provide the same free space and similar performance to 8 10000 RPM mechanical disk drives
  • Network: 1 dual-port network adapter, 1  Gbps or higher
  • Communication Equipment: Skype for Business certified Phones, Headsets, Gateways, Session Border Controllers.
  • Operating System: Windows Server 2012 R2 Datacenter OS, Windows Server 2012 R2 Standard OS, Windows Server 2012 Datacenter OS, or Windows Server 2012 Standard OS with required updates

VoIP Supply offers a wide range of Skype for Business friendly products including Polycom VVX410, Yealink  SIP T48G, Jabra EVOLVE 65 MS Stereo, Sangoma Vega 100 and more.

SANGOMA VVX410JABRA65

Learn How To Utilize It

Now you are ready to start utilizing Skype for Business! After installing and configuring the system, you can follow the video below to learn how to get started and utilize the basic functionalities. For more information about Skype or Skype for Business and other requirement details, please visit Microsoft’s website or VoIP Supply’s website. Good luck on deploying Skype for Business!