Skype For Business Mac Broadcast – Key Takeaways



Introduction

Skype for Business Mac is the latest version of Lync for Mac 2011. It is slated to be under preview any time soon (within couple of weeks from now). It promises less feature parity with windows version and enhanced quality. Microsoft conducted a broadcast session on April 22, 2016 to discuss this client.

Expected Features

We could note following points during the broadcast.

  • Microsoft has written a fresh codebase for the product.
  • Development team learnt a great deal of lesion from earlier version of it. Hence, they are putting special focus on quality.
  • Skype Inspired User Interface (UI).
  • Promising meeting join experience.
  • Skype for Business Mac to run side by side with Lync for Mac 2011. Microsoft may ask you to uninstall the previous version by the time Skype For Business Mac is RTM’ed.
  • You can join the preview program at https://www.skypepreview.com/. Earlier preview program was referred as TAP (Technology Adoption Program). If you have signed up earlier for preview program and didn’t check Mac option, go back and check the option when preview is available (anytime soon).
  • Skype For Business Mac introduces support for meet now. It provides an ability to create meeting.
  • Mac users can control shared desktop after RTM.
  • SILK codec will be supported. Perhaps that will be preferred protocol.
  • Two way content\desktop sharing will be a possibility.

Release Timeline


Interestingly, it won’t be a full-fledged client during preview 1. Microsoft plans to only make “meetings” feature in preview 1. Preview 2 client will have “people & msg” features in addition to the “meetings”. Preview 3 would have “Calling\Voice” features along with the existing ones. Finally, RTM would be a full-fledged client. This is the time when Microsoft may stop supporting side by side feature on Mac client.

Broadcast URL

Skype Broadcast – Skype For Business Mac Preview

Sample Screenshots – Courtesy Microsoft


Summary

There is an immense feature parity between windows and Mac version of Lync\SFB client. We hope that the gap will reduce to benefit the Mac users. Lync for Mac 2011 doesn’t provide same experience or business productivity as the windows one. Let’s hope that Skype for Business Mac proves to be a business productive end point.



2 Comments

Sid

Apr 29 2016 7:34AM

Agree. can't understand why I would test SFB with partial features.

Kumar

Apr 29 2016 7:32AM

I would love to get SFB with entire feature set for preview. It doesn't make any sense to test just meeting features in first preview.