Microsoft Lync: Take to the cloud or keep it in-house?

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Cloud-based Lync won't be immediately available, but could eventually be a viable alternative to in-house software.

Microsoft's overhauled unified communications platform -- Lync -- will soon hit the market, and customers will eventually have the option of running the software in-house or on Microsoft's cloud network.

As Microsoft has done with previous products, the company is releasing the packaged software to customers before upgrading its own cloud service with the capabilities. While Lync on-premise software is available starting Dec. 1, Lync Online will become available in the first half of next year with the full voice capabilities being added to the platform closer to the end of 2011.

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