Microsoft supports its unified communications offerings

Microsoft announced nine partners (GM, LG-Nortel, Plantronics, Polycom, Samsung, Tatung, Asus, NEC and Vitelix) that have built 15 phones and divices that support the company´s unified communications offerings. The thrust here of course is device integration into the UC software environment so that the telephones will work seamlessly with e-mail, IM, presence, VoIP, conferencing and mobile communications. To provide some measure of comfort for customers, Microsoft is also launching a qualification program – look soon for some sort of seal of approval. At his presentation at the WINHEC conference, Microsoft President Jeff Raikes predicted that in three years the average VoIP solution, including related devices, will cost less than half what it does today. During his keynote Bill Gates demontrated VoIP and voice/video/conferencing that are now being publicly tested in recently released betas of Office Communications Server 2007 an the Office Communicator 2007 instant messaging client.

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