Think Skype for Business, think Cloud PBX, PSTN Calling, PSTN Conferencing, PSTN Consumption… But how do they all fit together?
Do you need all of them or just some of them? And what licences do you buy? Roll your sleeves up – this Microsoft article is a good place to get started to find out more: http://bit.ly/2d2rfIz.
Skype for Business Cloud PBX gives businesses PBX capabilities but without the complicated (and expensive) equipment. What do you actually get with Cloud PBX? This is a useful Microsoft page with an FAQ at the bottom which covers the licensing requirements too: http://bit.ly/2dl8ded.
There’s a jolly useful FAQ on PSTN Calling which you might like to add to your list of interesting things to look at.
First, a reminder of what PSTN Calling is: the add-on telephone service that, when combined with Skype for Business Cloud PBX, can become your phone system. The FAQ covers what licences you’ll need as well as interesting issues such as how calls are charged if you travel to another country. The answer? If a user whose Office 365 licence is assigned in the US travels to London, any calls they make back to the US are considered domestic calls.
Find the FAQ here: http://bit.ly/28TU1bA.
Skype for Business Online Licensing OverviewSkype for Business Online has some key new components: Meeting Broadcast, Cloud PBX, PSTN Conferencing, and PSTN Calling.
If you want a summary of how to license these individual components and what to purchase if you’re already licensed for an Office 365 plan, then Microsoft’s Skype for Business Online Licensing Overview page is a good resource: http://bit.ly/1UmbTup.
This page also has some great links if you want a bit more detail on the new components themselves. Worth a look!
If you look at page 10 of the June 2015 Product List you’ll find that there are no changes listed for this month. So, we had to dig a bit deeper to find the (admittedly extraordinarily minor!) changes:
- First of all, the Planning Services which used to include Lync Server and now include Skype for Business Server are indeed updated to be “Skype for Business and Exchange Deployment Planning Services (S&EDPS)” on page 68
- Then there are some changes to the Microsoft Azure Services section on pages 41/42 with a slight amendment to the definition of “Consumption Rates” and the inclusion of MPSA as a qualifying agreement to set pricing for the Server pool and thus the Azure services in an EA
- And finally, there’s wording added on page 58 for the purchase eligibility of the Office 365 From SA User SLs. This clarifies that EA customers who licensed Office 365 before 1 August 2014 may indeed also purchase From SA USLs at renewal for any additional Office 365 users that they added during their Enrolment term
There aren’t many changes to the Product List this month with the main amendments falling into two key areas. The first is the renaming of Lync Server 2013 to Skype for Business Server 2015 and that’s happened throughout the document. The components of the CAL Suites are updated to included Skype for Business Server CALs (page 19) and all the information on upgrades and licence grants for customers with Lync SA are removed and a reference is added to the April 2014 Product List (page 28).
Then there are some changes for government customers and these include the introduction of government-specific SKUs for the Enterprise Cloud Suite, Project Online, Project Lite, Project Pro for Office 365, Visio Pro for Office 365, and Office 365 Extra File Storage (pages 47, 55, 61). In addition, the Product List is updated to show more clearly which services are available under the US Government Community Cloud program – look out for a “UC” cell identifier – and, in particular, ECS is now available under GCC (page 47).
Finally, there are a couple of Education-specific SKUs added for Dynamics Marketing and Social Engagement (page 52).
It’s a bizarre month these days when a Forefront product has the most interesting licensing changes in the Product List but that’s exactly what we find this April!
Forefront Identity Manager (FIM) 2010 R2 exited the Product List last month but sneaks back in this month with some changes to the licensing. Essentially, the right to install FIM is moved to Windows Server 2012 R2 (see page 39) and those customers who had active SA on FIM 2010 R2 at 1 April 2015 are deemed to have 1 Windows Server Datacenter licence. There aren’t, however, changes to the licensing of users accessing FIM functionality – see this article for which licences can be used: http://wp.me/p3K5IZ-et.
The other main changes are to do with some name changes – Microsoft Social Listening is rebranded as Microsoft Social Engagement – again more details are here: http://wp.me/p3K5IZ-ep and Lync Online changes to Skype for Business Online, all ready for its launch in the middle of April.
Finally, the information on the upgrade rights for customers who had SA coverage for SQL Server Parallel Data Warehouse on 1 March 1 2013 is removed, and there’s a reference back to the March 2014 Product List.
Lync Online is becoming Skype for Business Online and General Availability is confirmed as 14 April 2015: http://bit.ly/1F5Eawk.
This excellent Microsoft article gives a good heads-up on what we can expect from Skype for Business when it starts rolling out in April.
It is, of course, the next version of Lync and there will be a client, a server, and an Office 365 service which will include enterprise voice. There will also be support for a range of devices optimised for Skype for Business known as Skype Room Systems devices. Read the full article here (http://bit.ly/1BWBtjj) and watch this space for details on the licensing changes when they’re announced…