As mentioned in an earlier blog article, Microsoft Teams is not only a great team collaboration application with built-in intelligent communications, its also a powerful extensible platform that allows applications to be embedded within teams channels that make collaboration even richer and customizable. As of today, Microsoft Teams already contains hundreds of 3rd party apps published in the Teams store which users can easily install and add to their channels so that everyone in the team can leverage and use. It's also very simple to publish custom built apps and make it available in Teams. This blog posts walks through the steps publishing of a chat bot that can help answer user questions about the upcoming Microsoft Build Conference 2019 from May 6-8 at the Washington State Convention Center, Seattle WA. No coding is required to build this bot and in addition to MS Teams, we can even connect the bot to other additional chat services such as Telegram, Skype and Facebook Messenger
Just last Friday Microsoft announced in their blog page https://techcommunity.microsoft.com/t5/Microsoft-Teams-Blog/Microsoft-Teams-is-now-a-complete-meeting-and-calling-solution/ba-p/236042 that MS Teams now has all the meetings and calling functionality of Skype for Business Online. The article describes how MSTeams is now a complete meeting and calling solution and a Teams Conferencing Gateway, which allows you to use existing Skype for Business certified SIP-based phones with Teams; and USB HID Support for Teams, enabling customers to answer, end calls and control mute and volume using USB peripherals. In addition, cloud video interop services to support Teams meetings with existing VTC systems are underway with offerings from Pexip, Polycom, and Blue Jeans to be generally available later this calendar year. Of course this does not mean that the roadmap has been competed as there are additional features coming in Q4 of this year as can be seen in the MS Roadmap available here: http://aka.ms/skype2teamsroadmap. The purpose of this blog post is to serve as an add-on to go into detail the configuration of the O365 tenant to allow for calls to work between MSTeams and Skype for Business users.
In a previous blog post I wrote about provisioning Exchange mailbox accounts and Skype for Business meeting rooms accounts for Skype Room Devices such as the SurfaceHub and the Skype Room Systems V2 that is already available today. During my initial setup of a Polycom MSR Skype Room System V2 device, even after following the steps in the previous blog post, the device can register and sign-in successfully to a Skype meeting room account that is homed online on Office365. However, using an account that is homed on-premise, I could not get the device to sign in successfully. This blog posts walks through the error encountered and how I managed to resolve the issue
Just recently Microsoft made generally available Skype for Business Online Tenant Dial Plans for organizations on Office365. This new capability, which has been in preview for several months, has been a top feature request among organizations who have moved their PSTN calling capability to CloudPBX in Skype for Business Online. In my previous articles I wrote about Deploying Polycom phones for Cloud PBX with on-premise PSTN Connectivity as well as Cloud Connector Edition (CCE) 1.4.1 Deployment Walkthru Part 1 which are related topics. In this post, I will walk through creating Tenant Dial Pans in CloudPBX and how to use them with Polycom VVX family of qualified IP phones using our test lab environment with an Office365 E5 subscription,
Just a few days ago, Microsoft made generally available new features for Office365 CloudPBX functionality which is the Auto Attendant and Call Queues. As its name implies, Auto Attendant allows companies to create an intelligent virtual receptionist that helps callers navigate the system with interactive prompts, while Call Queues provides a mechanism to offer a single number to call for distribution lists or multiple Skype for Business Online users at the same time. This article walks through the creation of Auto Attendants and Call Queues using the web administrative portal. Do note the following two points which are applicable at the time of this writing:
1. Auto Attendants and Call Queues are supported in a pure-cloud environments. Hybrid environments such as the one seen in this walkthrough are not officially supported
2. Creation and set-up of auto attendants requires either getting or transferring existing toll or toll-free service numbers. In addition, toll-free service numbers require PSTN Consumption Billing to be setup. In this walkthrough we will acquire and use toll-free service numbers for our Auto Attendant and Call Queues but note that none of this will be callable as we do not have PSTN Consumption Billing setup.
With the above, lets begin the walk-through.
This article explains in detail how Modern Authentication works with the new firmware release UCS5.5.1 for the Polycom VVX family of handsets in an ADFS Federated Identity environment. Polycom VVX phones are a family of Office365 qualified IP phones for Skype for Business. First we go recap some of the basics of what Modern Authentication is and how it works and then show the user experience of the phone user interface during sign-in using modern authentication via the Web Sign-in method available in UCS5.5.1. Fellow MVP Jeff Schertz has covered all the new phone features for this firmware release in his blog post here and thus will not be repeated in this article. We will also provide some debug logs captured on the phone during the sign-in process which may assist in troubleshooting if something does not work.
Skype for Business Meeting room devices are gaining popularity in recent months as companies seek to extend the UC capabilities from the PC desktop to meeting spaces such as huddle rooms, small and medium sized meeting rooms and even large conference rooms. Polycom has been providing native Skype for Business meeting room solutions for many years now, such as the popular Polycom Group Series family of video collaboration endpoints, and more recently the Polycom Trio8800 SmartHub which is the successor to the widely used starfish conference phones but with additional video and content sharing capabilities. In addition, Microsoft's partners are soon to launch the Skype Room Systems V2 solution which adds yet another meeting room device that customers can choose from.
This blog post serves as a guide on how to provision these devices in an Office365 Hybrid environment where an on-premise AD is synced with Azure AD along with ADFS deployed, Exchange is purely online and Skype for Business configured with hybrid setup with some users homed on-premise and some online.