Skype and Lync: Connecting the Living Room to the Board Room

Today, we’re excited to announce Skype and Lync customers around the world are now able to connect with each other from across these platforms. With Lync-Skype connectivity, Skype users will now be able to reach a broader network of colleagues, partners and customers who are using Lync, Microsoft’s unified communications platform, connecting them into organizations of all sizes. Lync provides a consistent, single client experience for presence, instant messaging, voice, video and meetings for business productivity and is owned by over 90 of the Fortune Global 100 companies.

As Tony Bates, President of the Skype division at Microsoft, explained in his keynote at the Lync Conference in February, people are at the center of our vision for the future of communications. To turn our vision into reality, we think it’s important to re-humanize technology so that consumers, professionals and decision-makers can interact with technology how and when they want – from the living room to the boardroom.

This is our first step in combining the enterprise richness of Lync and the global reach of Skype to transform the communications experience and enable Skype users to reach professional contacts in organizations of all sizes.  

How does it work?

All you need to connect with your contacts on Lync is the latest Skype client, available from Skype.com, and a Microsoft account.  Connectivity is currently supported by Windows and Mac desktop clients, with more options coming soon as other clients are updated.

Step 1: Sign into Skype with a Microsoft account. If you already have a SkypeID, or a Skype contact list you’d like to merge, you can merge the two together during sign-in. If you happen to have multiple Skype accounts, because you use one for work and another for personal contacts, make sure to sign in with the Microsoft account you use for work or personal use before connecting it to a SkypeID used for the same purpose.

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Step 2: You can add Lync contacts by using their email address to search and find them.

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Step 3: Once you’ve identified the people you want to connect with and they have accepted your contact request, you can instant message or audio call them and begin talking!

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Lync-Skype connectivity removes barriers created by the rules of different devices, applications and networks that keep people from connecting seamlessly on the devices they use most. By putting people back at the center of the communications experience – instead of the technology they choose to use – we are enabling you to communicate with all the people you care about most using the Skype features that work best– with IM and audio calling – you can now work the way you want to. Over time, we will add more capabilities, with video calling as our next priority.

We’re always looking for ways to improve your experience and pay close attention to feedback provided by our community of users. To get the latest Skype news and tips about how to make your experience with Skype better than ever, follow us on Twitter and Facebook, or join us on the Skype Community. If you’re an IT administrator or Lync user and are looking for additional details, visit the Lync Team Blog and Lync.com.