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Skype for Business is here!

A few weeks ago, we announced the technical preview of the Skype for Business client, and today, we’re thrilled to announce that the new Skype for Business client is now rolling out as part of the April monthly update for Office 2013! In addition, Skype for Business Online is now rolling out to Office 365 customers worldwide, and we expect the roll out to be complete by the end of May.

If you currently use Lync Online in Office 365, the new Skype for Business user experience will appear for you in the coming weeks. For customers that need a little more time to prepare for Skype for Business, we have provided the ability for administrators to switch between Skype for Business and the traditional Lync user interface.  You can learn more here for Lync Online or here for the client experience with Lync Server.

Skype for Business is based on the familiar Skype experience that more than 300 million people use every month to connect with friends and family. It is built right into Office, so features like presence, IM, voice and video calls, and online meetings are an integrated part of the Office experience. And with Skype for Business, you can search for and connect with anyone in the Skype network–inside or outside your organization.

You can learn more about Skype for Business here.

Frequently asked questions

Q. What is Skype for Business?
A. Skype for Business (formerly Microsoft Lync) is a communications and collaboration platform that brings together an experience inspired by Skype with enterprise-grade security, compliance and control. It offers features including presence, IM, voice and video calls, and online meetings. It is built right in to Microsoft Office, so initiating chats, calls and meetings is an integrated experience within Office.

Q. Will Skype for Business automatically replace Lync Online for Office 365 customers?
A. Yes. We will automatically update the Lync Online service to be Skype for Business Online, and all customers are expected to be transitioned by the end of May.

Q. If I want more time to prepare for Skype for Business before upgrading, can I continue to use Lync?
A. Yes. Administrators for current Lync Online or Lync Server customers can control when the updated experience is rolled out to their users. Visit this page to learn more about how to configure the Skype for Business client experience.

Q. How can I learn more about the new client features?
A. More information about the features available in the new Skype for Business client is available here.

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