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New Microsoft Lync Usage Tool Provides Valuable Insights

October 24, 2014

Microsoft (News - Alert) has been pretty brazen this year about the shift in its business focus. With the company going on record that it is moving away from operating systems and emphasizing cloud initiatives, including this week’s slew of announcements surrounding Azure and the new Azure Marketplace, it’s clear that Redmond is reassessing how to better serve its customers.

Office 365 and the Lync unified communications (UC) platform are important components of Microsoft’s cloud strategy, and Lync in particular represents a massive opportunity for the company. Included in every distribution of Office and Office 365, Lync enables everything from video conferencing to instant messaging to a host of collaboration features. But exactly how Lync’s features are being utilized by end users has been somewhat of a mystery for Microsoft and its customers– until now.

The company has rolled out a new tool geared toward IT staffs and service providers, enabling them to better understand how their companies are using Lync. The new software generates a Lync Online client devices report, providing a list of the various devices employees use when connecting to Lync. Reports include details on Windows, Windows Phone (News - Alert), Android, iPhone and iPad usage and the goal is to equip administrators with valuable information so they may better manage Lync deployments.

The information is critical in today’s BYOD landscape, in which workers are demanding support and features for a variety of devices. For Lync to function efficiently, administrators must be able to assess and properly support a variety of connectivity endpoints. They can do this easily using Microsoft’s new tool, which generates data for direct viewing or export to Excel. Usage statistics may also be viewed through the Office 365 admin center.

Ultimately, the new tool will benefit Microsoft as well as its customers. As service providers and IT departments glean new insights about how end users are accessing and taking advantage of Lync, the company will also gain valuable business insight. As Microsoft continues to shift its business strategy to the cloud, statistics on Lync usage could prove invaluable in shaping and structuring its infrastructure and service offerings moving forward.

Edited by Maurice Nagle

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