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Microsoft is set to provide businesses with a complete hosted UC service that will compete directly with hosted UC services from operators and other providers.


  • Skype for Business Online will enable Microsoft to offer a hosted UC service for both SMEs and enterprises.
  • Skype for Business Online will compete directly with providers’ hosted Lync services, but it will also open new opportunities for service providers, particularly operators.
  • It will be at least two to three years before Skype for Business Online has the UC capabilities needed to compete effectively against providers’ hosted Lync services.

Features and Benefits

  • Details Microsoft's latest strategy for a more complete hosted UC service.
  • Shows how service providers will compete against and partner with Microsoft in hosted UC services.

Key questions answered

  • What is the difference between Lync Online and Skype for Business Online?
  • How will Skype for Business Online affect providers of hosted Lync services?

Table of contents


  • In brief
  • Ovum view
  • Recommendations

Lync Online is to become a full-fledged hosted UC service

  • Becoming Skype for Business Online

One Skype name, three distinct Skype offerings

  • A range of options

Skype for Business Online gets Enterprise Voice

  • A range of additional features

Skype for Business Online competes with hosted Lync services

  • Becoming a full-featured business communications service

New opportunities for providers of network access services

  • Establishing direct, private connections


  • Methodology
  • Further reading
  • Author

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