You probably use Microsoft Office applications   like Word and Excel on a near-daily basis. But in the future, you might have to add Microsoft Lync to the list of your most-used Microsoft programs – at least if your business depends on corporate network for its computing needs.

What is Microsoft Lync 2013?

Lync 2013 is Microsoft’s new server platform. Despite its flashy new name, Lync isn’t a totally new invention. It was previously known simply as “Office Communications Server”, which admittedly isn’t as glamorous as Lync.
Lync 2013 joins together instant messaging, video conferencing, voice communication, email, and Office applications in real-time. The goal of the program is to make it easier for business networks to run a wide variety of useful applications.
Don’t worry about having to pay extra for Lync 2013: the program will come bundled with all Office 365 business subscriptions. So if you’re upgrading Office applications to their 2013 versions, Sync 2013 will be included in that package.

Advantages of Lync 2013

The 2013 version of Lync has a number of key advantages over its predecessors. Here are just a few of the reasons why Lync 2013 will be useful for server admins and users alike:
Video conferencing in HD
Video conferencing is undoubtedly cool. However, it’s rare to find good-quality video conferencing streams, and most people have grown accustomed to the fact that video conferencing chats tend to have a lower level of quality than other types of video. Thanks to Lync 2013, however, HD video conferencing will be easier than ever.
Lync 2013 supports 1080p HD video streaming over a number of different video codecs. It should work across most popular platforms and devices, making it easier than ever for multiple people to connect with one another over beautiful HD streaming video.
Mobile apps
Microsoft’s big push over the last year has been to “go mobile”, and Lync 2013 hasn’t escaped that push. Microsoft has released Lync Mobile apps for all major mobile operating systems, including iOS, Android, and of course, Windows Phone. These apps will allow users to join Lync meetings from anywhere, call, or send an instant message.
For business professionals who are always on the go, Lync is designed to provide the maximum level of convenience when it comes to staying in contact with the home office.
Web app

Just because you don’t have one of those fancy new smartphones or tablets doesn’t mean you can’t access Lync remotely from a standard computer. Microsoft has also developed web apps that are accessible from Windows and Mac OS X operating systems – even if the Lync client software isn’t installed. With the web app, users have access to more features than they would with the mobile app, including desktop sharing and HD video.
Skype synchronization
Microsoft will be leaning heavily on Skype to provide instant messaging and HD video support for users as we move forward. In the past, Office Communications Server featured support for Windows Live Messenger, but with Messenger now a thing of the past, it’s all about Skype.
Lync 2013 will feature full Skype support, including voice chat, video chat, IM, and all of the other features we know and love.

Download a free trial of Microsoft Lync 2013 today

To download a free trial of Microsoft Lync today, click here to visit the official Microsoft website for the Lync trial. From there, Microsoft will link you towards an Office 365 Small Business Premium trial or an Office 365 Enterprise preview, both of which include Lync support.
“IT Pros” can also try the Lync Server 2013 Day Evaluation to get a feel for the platform.
If your business network has depended on Office Communications Server in the past, then Sync 2013 will play an even more important role in your business’s computing needs as we move towards the future. Microsoft promises that Lync will be “the biggest thing to hit the office since Microsoft Office.”

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