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Cisco turns offensive towards Microsoft's UC platform, Lync

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Cisco says that a single-vendor platform that is aligned with modern IT requirements such as BYOD, cloud etc is any day better than a multi-vendor platform like that of Microsoft's

BANGALORE, INDIA: Cisco is giving all it has to defend the company's forte in unified communications space. The networking company has launched a campaign, a bit offensive in spirit, against rival Microsoft, who is pepping up for its first Lync User Conference.

In this campaign, Cisco plays around the point that a single-vendor platform that is aligned with modern IT requirements such as BYOD, cloud etc is any day better than a multi-vendor platform like that of Microsoft's.

Rowan Trollope, senior vice president of Cisco's Collaboration Technology Group, in a blogpost notes that Microsoft Lync, 'a solution that's primarily been developed for a desktop PC user experience', is less able to meet wider post-PC requirements.

"For instance, Microsoft's approach with Lync leaves out several important collaboration elements many enterprise organizations find critical today - such as phones, video endpoints, voice and video gateways, networking and cloud PSTN connections. These components need to be procured, integrated and supported separately for those who choose to use Lync," he adds.

Cisco has also commissioned a survey of 3,320 IT leaders to highlight the differences between its and Microsoft's approach to collaboration.

Seventy two per cent of the survey respondents said that Microsoft's 'Windows first' strategy will have at least some negative impact on their business - since it is BYOD that's here to stay, not BYOWD (Bring Your Own Windows Device).

The survey also hints at Microsoft's weak strategy around UC on cloud.

Eighty per cent of respondents expect to get voice and video from the cloud with features and quality on par with what's offered on premises. Microsoft is playing catch-up in both areas; they do not have a strong global telecom provider network in place and a significant number of those who have deployed Lync do not use it for business-critical external communications, and an even higher percentage maintain a proven communications system for their most important communications.

Cisco has also dedicated a micro site for the whole smearing campaign.

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