At the first day of Microsoft Ignite, Microsoft made some major announcements regarding its new vision of “Intelligent Communications” with Teams being the centerpiece, signaling a shift away from the Skype for Business client. Teams will be built on a a new modern Skype Infrastructure for enterprise-grade voice and video communications.
Microsoft also announced a new version of Skype for Business Server targeted for the second half of calendar year 2018.
What this all means?
1. Mainstream Support will continue for on premise customers of Skype for Business Server through 2023 assuming vNext is released at the end of 2018. Customers can rest easy knowing they can continue to use Skype in the way they have been without having to worry about a major migration in the near future.
2. Microsoft Teams and Skype for Business clients can be run side by side to evaluate and explore what’s best for your organization. For organizations that have not yet deployed Skype, it likely makes more sense they start on their journey of Intelligent Communications using Teams.
3. Expect to see continued growth and investment in Microsoft Teams, with the product moving to achieve feature parity with Skype for Business. Guest Access was recently rolled out. PSTN Calling was called out as a feature to preview soon. PSTN Conferencing is already available in preview today.
4. Also expected is tighter interoperability between Teams and Skype, namely including universal presence, messaging and calling interoperability.
Indeed an exciting new chapter is unveiled.. See https://blogs.office.com/en-us/2017/09/25/a-new-vision-for-intelligent-communications-in-office-365/ for further details.