Microsoft Lync vs. Cisco

Most companies have started using unified communications
systems in their companies to facilitate seamless flow of information in the
business internally and externally. Unified Communications allows you to
communicate with colleagues, clients and vendors all in one place via instant
messaging, email, VoIP and presence. There are many UC technologies available
in the market today but the most prominent ones are the Microsoft Lync and Cisco UC. These have
been competing head to head for a long time and many a business have had to
choose between the two for a UC solution. There are several reasons why a
business may choose a certain UC solution, whether it’s Lync or the Cisco UC.
Even though both software have similar features, there are some factors which
set Microsoft Lync apart from Cisco.

Integration and Customizability

Cisco is hardware limited technology which integrates
phones, computers and other communication devices. Microsoft Lync on the other hand has
successfully removed all dependency on hardware and moved to a cloud or software
based system which provides the same, if not more flexible integration. Most
people don’t have the expertise to realize that Microsoft Lync’s potential is far more than what
you see on the surface. The (API) application programming interface of Lync
opens up a substantially large surface for programmers to tinker with.  This means that each business can customize
aspects of the program to suit their specific needs.

User Experience

The Lync interface offers a much cleaner look than Cisco
allowing more ease in usage. This becomes especially important when deploying
software in a company with numerous employees. Employees generally need some
training when any UC software s deployed. Some employees may take longer to learn
than others. The easy to use interface allows for easy usage and training. In
fact, since the interface is very familiar, it allows users to figure things
out on their own. In fact, Microsoft Lync is even more flexible when it comes to customizability. One such
feature is that of streaming multiple videos at the same time and even in an
arranged grid all while using lesser bandwidth.

Future Development

Microsoft Lync Online does not enjoy the same kind of flexibility that hosted Lync
does. Some features that are available in hosted servers are not available in
Lync Online. The introduction of businesses to the cloud will open doors for
more customizability with every company experimenting and testing out features
that work best for them. Over time, the capabilities of the cloud will also
expand to include the features which are currently only done using on-premises
servers.

It’s always exciting to work with a developing technology.
While Lync is not very new, it has always been in a state of evolution. This
attitude by Microsoft Lync keeps opening new areas of development leading to innovations and
breakthroughs. The cloud server, especially, currently holds the most potential
for development. When you consider compatibility with Office 365 and
interoperability with Skype and other software, it is easy to see that Microsoft Lync is a much
better UC system for businesses.