Microsoft introducing Skype for Business Mac Preview w/ Outlook calendar integration
Microsoft is getting serious with the Mac today with its new Skype for Business preview for OS X. The new business-focused version of Skype for Mac runs on OS X El Capitan and focuses on creating an enterprise-friendly experience. IT professionals can request access to the new Skype for Business Mac Preview starting today.
In addition to taking preview requests from commercial clients, Microsoft says it will begin seeding Skype for Business Mac Preview to IT administrators before opening the preview to more users.
Microsoft plans to roll out the Skype for Business Mac client in three stages, starting with today’s release which includes Outlook calendar integration for viewing and joining meetings right from Skype, then two additional versions before public availability:
We’ll be adding instant messaging, presence and the contacts list in the next preview release coming in early summer, and telephony in late summer.
New invitations will be issued daily over the next few weeks until all organizations wanting to participate have access, and testers will also be able to submit feedback during the preview period atskypefeedback.com.
Skype for Business differs from the standard version of the communication app as it allows for up to 250 people on a call versus the 25 person limit on standard Skype. Outlook integration, enterprise-grade security, and the ability to manage employee accounts also set it apart. Standalone Skype for Business plans run $2.00/month per user with more packages available as well.
Skype for Business Mac Preview joins the other client already available on an Apple platform, Skype for Business on iPhone and iPad.