BT Expands Unified Communications and Collaboration Portfolio

BT announced an expansion of its existing Unified Communications and Collaboration (UCC) portfolio based on Microsoft Exchange Server 2007, Microsoft Office Live Meeting with Microsoft Office Communications Server 2007.

Earlier this year BT Global Services began testing Office Communications Server 2007, a unified-communications application that brings together e-mail, instant messaging, presence capabilities, Web conferencing, and voice features.

"We knew that our customers would want solutions that are based on Office Communications Server 2007, so we want to be at the forefront of understanding this application internally," said Michael Boustridge, President, BT USA & Canada.

Boustridge said, "We see this as a very important product which incorporates advanced voice communications and web conferencing to the other features in Live Communications Server 2005 that many of our customers use. Office Communications Server 2007 also exposes presence controls as well as frequently-used applications such as the Microsoft Office suite of products."

Jeff Raikes, president, Microsoft Business Division, said, "As the next generation of Microsoft's unified communications products are delivered, BT's experience in voice technologies and their background and leadership in conferencing, instant messaging and Exchange-based messaging systems will fuel innovation and deliver significant benefits to customers, including lower costs and more choices."

Office Communications Server 2007 will play a part in BT's approach to the UCC market, which is designed to help enterprise customers manage their journeys to a converged environment where collaboration tools can be used to increase efficiency, productivity and competitive position.

BT's portfolio of UCC services enables organizations' communications infrastructure, mobility, desktop and applications to work together so that users can take part in almost any form of communication to anyone at any time, by securely linking voice, mobile and data services with desktop.

BT maintains relationships with Cisco, Microsoft and Nortel to help enterprise customers improve communication and collaboration. By providing a portfolio of capabilities and services, including UCC consultancy and professional services, BT can help customers:

* Increase flexibility to bring together dispersed project teams of employees, as well as business partners and customers

* Get more work done, better and faster, by further extending their reach into and beyond the enterprise through instantaneous and consolidated access to information and resources

* Devote their time and energy to solving business problems, with BT as the single interface across the entire technology solution

* Reduce the upfront technology investments and ongoing costs with BT's suite of IP applications that minimizes the need for infrastructure investments and eliminates recurrent third party usage charges.

"This portfolio expansion will further enhance our position as a trusted provider in the Unified Communications market place," Boustridge said.