Microsoft announce that Skype for Business Online will be retired on 31 July 2021. Customers will be migrated to Teams between now and then, and starting 1 September 2019 new Office 365 customers will be onboarded directly to Teams. It’s worth noting that this announcement doesn’t affect either the Skype Consumer service or Skype for Business Server. You can find the announcement here: http://bit.ly/2KreuaK with further details, including customer information on migrating to Teams. There’s also a link to Forrester’s whitepaper: “The Total Economic Impact of Microsoft Teams”, or find it here: http://bit.ly/33oWVPW.
Skype for Business Online features and functionality are moving into Microsoft Teams. From a licensing perspective, additional services such as Audio Conferencing and Phone System will continue to be Add-on licences, and from a technical perspective from 1st October, 2018 new Office 365 customers with less than 500 seats will be onboarded to Microsoft Teams and will have no access to Skype for Business Online.
This is a useful FAQ with lots of information on the whole Skype for Business to Microsoft Teams upgrade topic: http://bit.ly/2pL5Rwz.
Microsoft announce that Skype for Business Online Plan 1 will be retired from the CSP program, effective 1 August, 2018. If you want information on the plans to migrate customers to, and how to do it, then this is the page for you: http://bit.ly/2MGp63I. It’s worth noting that most Office 365 plans do now actually include Skype for Business Online Plan 1 functionality.
Some of the Skype for Business Online services are renamed: PSTN Calling is now Calling Plan, PSTN Conferencing is Audio Conferencing, Cloud PBX is Phone System, and PSTN Consumption is now Communication Credits.
This is a useful page to find out more about these services and their licensing: http://bit.ly/2y71dyv, and page 6 of the October 2017 Product Terms summarises the changes.
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).