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Skype for Business OverviewUNIXBusinessApplication

Skype for Business is #6 ranked solution in top Virtual Meetings tools. PeerSpot users give Skype for Business an average rating of 8 out of 10. Skype for Business is most commonly compared to Zoom: Skype for Business vs Zoom. The top industry researching this solution are professionals from a comms service provider, accounting for 28% of all views.
What is Skype for Business?
Skype for Business offers features including presence, IM, voice and video calls, online meetings, conferencing, and telephony solutions that support enterprise-level collaboration requirements. Skype for Business Record meetings, share your screen, and annotate PowerPoint for real-time collaboration with up to 250 people and use whiteboard, polls, Q&A, and built-in IM during your business meetings to make them more productive. Skype for Business provides new client experience, Skype for Business Server provides several new features to improve manageability of on-premises servers and hybrid solutions. Skype for Business also supports the Lync client experience so that you can choose a phased upgrade approach to the new client experience for users. Skype for Business is also an integral part of Microsoft Office 365, providing PSTN Conferencing, Cloud PBX, PSTN Calling, and Skype Meeting Broadcast capabilities to Office 365 users.

Skype for Business was previously known as Skype for Business Plan 1, Skype for Business Plan 2, Lync Server.

Skype for Business Buyer's Guide

Download the Skype for Business Buyer's Guide including reviews and more. Updated: April 2022

Skype for Business Customers

EmpireCLS Worldwide Chauffeured Services,LA Fitness, MedcoEnergi International, Tampa General Hospital, and HopewellHoldings Limited.

Skype for Business Video

Skype for Business Pricing Advice

What users are saying about Skype for Business pricing:
"The cost of Skype for Business is incorporated into our Office 365 licenses."

Skype for Business Reviews

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Developer at a photography company with 1-10 employees
Real User
Easy video conferencing with a simple setup and capable of saving conversations
Pros and Cons
  • "I like the fact that it opens up your video conferencing, and, in many cases, the audio at the same time."
  • "The integration with Outlook could be improved."

What is our primary use case?

Recently, we all went remote, so we needed a way to implement virtual meetings on a large scale and we utilize Skype for Business for these purposes. It might have a lot to do with the response to COVID and getting more people connected for remote access.

What is most valuable?

The solution connects to meetings pretty well. 

I like the fact that it opens up your video conferencing, and, in many cases, the audio at the same time. 

It's very useful that the solution can save conversations.

What needs improvement?

The implementation could be improved.

In my case, I don't necessarily pick up audio, so I have to dial in. I have two connections. One is a visual and one is strictly for audio calls. Some other users aren't experiencing that issue. It's inconsistent and I'm not sure why. I also can't say with certainty that this is a Skype problem or if something else is causing the discrepancy. 

There seems to be some sort of setting whereby it pretty much keeps instant messenger open all the time. I don't know what the settings are, or if this can be switched off. I believe there's an integration with that, where it assumes a certain status. I haven't had a chance to manually change it or to look into how to adjust it. 

The integration with Outlook could be improved.

There could be more opportunities for setting up your current status.

The solution feels like it's pretty bare-bones. There could be some additional features added, perhaps on the statuses or something of that nature because as it stands now, it's pretty sparse. I have heard that they're going to be introducing some features pretty soon. I hope that's the case. 

For how long have I used the solution?

I've personally used Skype itself for years. However, in terms of utilizing Skype for Business, I've only been using the solution for the last month, or, more accurately, about three weeks.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

The solution seems to be pretty stable and is just as stable in the business version as the regular version. I haven't had any issues whatsoever with crashes or glitches. However, it does feel like it's pretty bare-bones.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

The solution is pretty scalable. You can use it across the company, and certainly within IT. Since everybody's working remotely now, with COVID-19, I think it scales quite well.

Even when you add people, it's still easy to manage many multiples people in a single meeting

I don't know how many people in our company are actually on it at this point. I imagine it's quite a few, however, I'm not sure of which departments that are using it, or if it's been deployed across the board.

How are customer service and technical support?

I've logged into technical support a few times on the Microsoft store. They used to actually go through edX at one point. They may have their own portal now. I've looked at it for various products such as SQL, Visual Source Code, etc. and not just for Skype, so I can navigate it pretty well. I've been helped there. They do have paths to different types of certifications and stuff. I have not gone through any of that myself, however.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup is straightforward. It's not complex at all.

What other advice do I have?

We're just a customer.

I'd advise other organizations that the implementation is pretty smooth as far as installations go, so they shouldn't be afraid to give it a try. Using it is very straightforward, and it just sits on your desktop as an icon, so it's easy to access when you need it.

Overall, I'd rate the solution eight out of ten.

Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
Principal Engineer at Dell EMC
Real User
Communication and collaboration tool with multi-device setup, but lacks dynamic file updating
Pros and Cons
  • "One of the best features of Skype for Business is that you can set it up on mobile phones, and you can set it up on laptops. You can connect to the tool from anywhere."
  • "The tool needs to have a dynamic file updating feature, so people you share a file with could update the file dynamically, all at once, all at the same time."

What is our primary use case?

Skype for Business was one of the prime tools we used to communicate with vendors. We also used it for communicating with other employees internally, within our organization.

What is most valuable?

We had a very good experience with Skype for Business. It was a helpful tool, and one of the best tools I've ever worked with. It's just that our organization is now starting to use Microsoft Teams, so people are diverted into that tool slowly and steadily. We can organize meetings and send across files on it, e.g. there are a lot of options you can use on Microsoft Teams. Both Skype for Business and Microsoft Teams have multiple advantages.

One of the best features of Skype for Business is that you can set it up on mobile phones, and you can set it up on laptops. You can connect to the tool from anywhere.

What needs improvement?

Dynamic file updating is a feature I haven't seen on Skype for Business. It's an area for improvement, e.g. I've seen that feature on Microsoft Teams, but not on this tool. If I send one file and shared it with 10 resources, for example, those 10 resources can update that file dynamically all at once, at the same time. Being able to update a file dynamically, by more than one resource, is one of the best features that isn't available on Skype for Business.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

Skype for Business is a stable tool. It's just that our organization has moved to Microsoft Teams, but I found Skype for Business to be stable.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

Scalability is present in Skype for Business, e.g. you can use it to participate in one-to-one chats, and you can have a call with multiple people on it. If you have an organization with 3,000 people, you can manage it very nicely on Skype for Business. The tool can also scale from 10,000 to 20,000 users. It's a scalable tool.

What other advice do I have?

We have Skype for Business in our organization, and our last usage of it was six months ago.

I'm unable to comment on the initial setup of Skype for Business, because the installation was done by our IT team. Our team just used the tool. My work is on IT infrastructure, and Skype for Business is one of the communication tools that our local IT team provided to us. Our IT team took care of the installation.

Everyone in our organization used Skype for Business. Everyone was using the same thing, because there was no other option that time. Slowly and steadily, people went on to use Microsoft Teams, and I started using Zoom for meetings, because once the pandemic came in, everything was remote. Our organization wanted a tool which had better quality, or could be a better way to communicate, so we went onto Zoom and Microsoft Teams. Prior to those two tools, we used Skype for Business.

I'm rating Skype for Business seven out of ten. It's a really good solution.

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

Public Cloud
Disclosure: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer:
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Buyer's Guide
Skype for Business
April 2022
Learn what your peers think about Skype for Business. Get advice and tips from experienced pros sharing their opinions. Updated: April 2022.
596,970 professionals have used our research since 2012.
VijayKumar4 - PeerSpot reviewer
AVP - Cyber Secuirty at Cloud4C Services
MSP
Top 5Leaderboard
Easy to use, great for remote meetings, and has lots of collaboration potential
Pros and Cons
  • "Making calls and having meetings is easy."
  • "The solution isn't connected to Microsoft Teams, and I feel like there is better communication on that particular solution. The group capabilities are a bit less than Teams."

How has it helped my organization?

The solution has improved the flexibility of meetings for our organization. For example, I can use it from my phone or laptop. I can use it wherever I am. It's increased our communication channels.

It has everything in one place from sharing to team management. It makes everything easy.

What is most valuable?

There are many valuable aspects of the solution. For collaboration purposes, there are many integration capabilities. 

Making calls and having meetings is easy. 

There are a lot of very fundamental functions on offer.

What needs improvement?

There is sometimes a lag, often because this is not integrated with a few fields. We are in India, so we have some restrictions on some key integrations. For example, it cannot integrate with our internal landlines. When I was in the United States, this wasn't a problem at all.

We need some sort of functionality whereby users can use a link as browser calling. Calling only is what is available to us. That's not in every country, however, just a few. They should make it standard across the board around the world.

The solution isn't connected to Microsoft Teams, and I feel like there is better communication on that particular solution. The group capabilities are a bit less than Teams.

I have some standard meetings that happen on a regular basis, and it would be nice if I could just go directly to them from Skype instead of looking into my calendar and clicking on a link.

Group calling is not available on Skype right now.

For how long have I used the solution?

I've been using the solution for almost a full year at this point. The company has been using the solution for five years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

The stability of the solution is great. There aren't bugs or glitches. It doesn't crash. We don't face any challenges with the solution in that sense.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

We have limited employees, so we've never really experimented with scaling the solution. I can't speak to how easy it would be to expand the solution.

We have about 900 users on the solution right now.

We use the solution quite often. It's used on a daily basis.

How are customer service and technical support?

We get our technical support from Microsoft, who owns Skype. They've always been fantastic. We have been satisfied with the level or response we get.

How was the initial setup?

The implementation of the solution was handled before I came to the company, so I didn't participate in the initial institution. I don't know if the product has a straightforward or complex setup.

I believe that deployment took place under the supervision of another team.

What other advice do I have?

With work from home situations increasing, and a company would benefit from using this solution. The collaboration capabilities are great and allow for real-time interactions within teams. It's perfect for remote work.

I'd rate the solution nine out of ten.

Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
Owner at a pharma/biotech company with 10,001+ employees
Real User
Top 20
Great for remote meetings, very stable, and reliable
Pros and Cons
  • "There are free versions of the solution available."
  • "It would be ideal if the solution could make instant messages more permanent. Currently, if you close the conversation, you lose the instant messages that you shared during the meeting. If those could last beyond the meeting, that would be a great addition, due to the fact that frequently, people give each other key details, important information, or email addresses, etc., during the meeting. If you don't write it down during the meeting, after the meeting closes, it's gone forever. That can be quite frustrating."

What is our primary use case?

We primarily use the solution for our business meetings.

What is most valuable?

The solution is stable.

There are free versions of the solution available.

What needs improvement?

It would be ideal if the solution could make instant messages more permanent. Currently, if you close the conversation, you lose the instant messages that you shared during the meeting. If those could last beyond the meeting, that would be a great addition, due to the fact that frequently, people give each other key details, important information, or email addresses, etc., during the meeting. If you don't write it down during the meeting, after the meeting closes, it's gone forever. That can be quite frustrating.

The ability for the solution to offer a grid view, so you can see all of the people on a call at the same time, instead of just a few selected ones, would be ideal.

For how long have I used the solution?

I've been using the solution for about a year now.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

The solution appears to be quite stable. There aren't bugs or glitches. There aren't any crashes. It doesn't freeze. I would say it's reliable.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

Our IT team would handle any scaling that needs to be done. It's not something I have direct experience with.

We have about 20,000 users on the product in our organization currently. Everybody uses it, from the accountant to the CEO.

The number of employees has remained fairly stable for a long time. Right now, they're just maintaining it at the same user level. We haven't had any recent growth. I have no idea if we'll increase usage in the future.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

Skype is actually the first tool like this that I have used. Another company I work with is trying out Zoom, but that's fairly recent.

How was the initial setup?

I wasn't a part of the initial setup of the solution. I don't know if it was complex or straightforward. I'm just a user. The IT team is the one that sets it up and configures everything for us. I also can't say if the process of deployment was fast or not or how long the process took.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

I'm sure there are licensing fees for it, however, I don't know what they are. I know there are free versions of the solution. However, that probably doesn't apply to us as we have a high number of users in this company.

What other advice do I have?

I'm just a user of the product. I'm not a reseller or an integrator.

I use Skype for Business every day.

I'd rate the solution nine out of ten. It's been great so far.

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

Public Cloud
Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
Associate professor in accounting at a university with 5,001-10,000 employees
Real User
Top 20
Scalable and easy to install communication tool, but its group feature needs improvement
Pros and Cons
  • "Scalable communication tool that's easy to install. Even old people are using it, because of its ease of use."
  • "The group feature of Skype for Business needs improvement. It should also be improved for online lectures."

What is our primary use case?

We use Skype for Business as a tool for our online lectures. We're using it as an online platform for the tutorials and lectures we give our students.

What is most valuable?

I find Skype for Business a good solution. It works well. The tool can be nice if I'm talking to one of my colleagues, or doing a small session where I don't have to share content, or where I don't have to divide students to groups, or make a group work together.

What needs improvement?

Skype for Business is not suitable for giving lectures. Tools more suitable for online lectures are Zoom and Microsoft Teams, because you can divide students into groups. I didn't see this feature in Skype for Business, and if it's there, I don't know that it's there.

For how long have I used the solution?

I've been using Skype for Business since COVID-19 started, e.g. 2020. The coronavirus makes us use these technologies extensively.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

The stability of Skype for Business is based on the internet, e.g. if your internet is good, then the tool is good. If your internet is not good, then the tool is not good.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

I find Skype for Business easy to expand. It's scalable.

How was the initial setup?

Installing Skype for Business was easy. We installed in 10 years ago, and we use it like a phone. We call our friends who are abroad, e.g. instead of using international minutes in our mobiles, we use Skype as a technology to call our colleagues. Installation was easy, and its available on mobile and on the computer. I installed Skype for Business myself.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

I never paid for a Skype for Business license as it's free on my device, but Zoom, we pay $20 a month.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

I evaluated Zoom and Microsoft Teams.

What other advice do I have?

I don't have information on how many users can use Skype for Business at the same time, because I didn't use it with students. I used it to call my friends, e.g. just one or two friends, and not more than that number.

I would recommend Skype for Business to others, because it's good. It's a good software to talk to others. Even old people are using the tool.

My rating for Skype for Business is seven out of ten.

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

Public Cloud
Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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Marc Spicer - PeerSpot reviewer
Director Of Technology at UNCF
Real User
Top 20
Helpful chat facility and good for internal communications, but call quality and reliability need to improve
Pros and Cons
  • "I use the chat feature to communicate with my staff, which is very helpful."
  • "Going forward, I would like to see better call quality and reliability."

What is our primary use case?

We use Skype for hosting meetings that are internal to the organization.

How has it helped my organization?

Pre-COVID, we did not use it as much as we do now. Post-COVID, however, all of my staff meetings are now done through the visual interface.

What is most valuable?

I use the chat feature to communicate with my staff, which is very helpful. I'm in a different area of the building than my support team, so a lot of my communications, rather than me running down to their offices or calling them, can be done with Skype.

What needs improvement?

Going forward, I would like to see better call quality and reliability.

For how long have I used the solution?

I have been using Skype for Business since I joined UNCF two years ago.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

Different parts of our organization were using Skype and Zoom, and we are trying to standardize the use of solutions for virtual meetings. Zoom is being used for external communication, and Skype for Business is being used internally.

Microsoft Teams is replacing Skype for business and we have also used Amazon Chime.

All of these solutions are different audiences. The first category is internal communications and collaboration, and that would be Skype and Teams. In the next tier, you have external meetings, webinars, and conferences of medium-sized scale. These are within the Zoom realm. Finally, you have virtual events such as registrations and breakout rooms. Although Zoom has that capability, the scale is different, which is where Chime and some of the other products come in.

The tier that Teams and Skype for Business are in, suits that tier. Skype is not about conferences, large meetings, webinars, and the like. It is for people working together online, sharing information, transferring files, and changing the screens depending on who is presenting. It's a collaborative remote use case.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

The cost of Skype for Business is incorporated into our Office 365 licenses.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

Microsoft Teams is slated to replace Skype and Skype for Business. It will have a more seamless interface between it and Outlook and the Office 365 suite. It is feature-rich and includes things like a whiteboarding capability. It is easy to use and ties together far more manageable and sophisticated collaboration tools.

What other advice do I have?

I would rate this solution a six out of ten.

Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
Akash Mukherjee - PeerSpot reviewer
Manager Global Business Development at Trigent Software Ltd
Real User
Top 20
Calling features and screen sharing are good features; sound quality and clarity need improvement
Pros and Cons
  • "The calling features are most valuable, especially now as we are working remotely."
  • "There are issues with the bandwidth, particularly for external meetings,"

What is our primary use case?

Skype is mainly used for our internal meetings. We have it set up for all the different groups in the company, whether it's my IFC, the marketing team, pre-sales team, senior leadership, etc. We're using the product at least once a day and everybody in the company uses it. We're customers of Skype and I'm the manager of global business development. 

What is most valuable?

The calling features are the most valuable, especially now as we are working remotely  because of this pandemic. The screen sharing aspect is also a valuable feature. For example, if we need to explain something internally or deliver a presentation internally, being able to share the screen is a huge benefit. We also use Google Meet for that, so it's dual usage for us.

What needs improvement?

We have issues with the Skype bandwidth, particularly for external meetings, which is why we also use Google Meet. Also, the sound quality of Skype is not great - there is a constant background humming noise. Clarity is essential, especially in our planning meetings. We can't rely on Skype for that and that's why we sometimes use Google Meet instead. 

For how long have I used the solution?

I've been at this company for three months and that's how long I've been using the solution. 

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

The system is somewhat stable although there's the issue of the background noise and it's not always clear who is talking. Following the flow of a meeting can become a bit tricky when a lot of people are involved.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

The solution is scalable in that we can sometimes have up to 30 people participating in a meeting. 

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

We currently use both Skype and Google Meet. Google Meet is very user friendly with good voice quality. We can record our calls and then share screens when we're making a presentation. It's an easier solution than Skype even though we use both platforms. 
For our external client meetings we use Google Meet and internally we use Skype. 

What other advice do I have?

I would rate this solution a six out of 10. 

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

Public Cloud
Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
Technology Manager at City of Markham
Real User
Convenient and easy to use but could be more collaborative
Pros and Cons
  • "People are now able to virtually collaborate with their staff and have a conference call. We don't need a phone line to make that conference call and we are saving on that. People are able to share their presentations. Also, they can chat using the Skype"
  • "We are looking for a more collaborative tool, not only in terms of virtual meetings but also for teams to collaborate, share a document, work together, and all those types of things."

What is our primary use case?

We use it for our internal communication.

What is most valuable?

In terms of what I have found most valuable - with COVID people are now able to virtually collaborate with their staff and have a conference call. We don't need a phone line to make that conference call and we are saving on that. People are able to share their presentations. Also, they can chat using the Skype. It's not a great tool, but it meets our need right now.

What needs improvement?

We are looking for a more collaborative tool, not only in terms of virtual meetings but also for teams to collaborate, share a document, work together, and all those types of things.

For how long have I used the solution?

We have been using Skype for Business from right when Skype introduced it - many years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

For the last two years, we have been using it and it has been stable. People are not getting dropped out from meetings. We are able to have 50 users in a meeting. It is something that is available as part of our enterprise agreement with Microsoft, so there is no additional cost.

How are customer service and support?

As part of our EA, we have support. Usually we also have a dedicated account manager for any Microsoft product, not just the Skype, if we are not able to get support. We never had any problems with Skype. We never had to call in for technical support since it was set up and running. Periodically, we continue to apply patches and upgrades. So far, we never had any issues and there was never a need to make a call to Microsoft to resolve any issue, but we do have support in place, and if we don't get prompt response, then we have the account manager to escalate and, usually, the account manager is able to assign a technical lead expert to help us resolve the issue in a quick manner.

What other advice do I have?

I think Skype for Business has been discontinued, so I don't think anybody should be interested in implementing it. Microsoft is not selling it anymore, but the product is still supported until the end of 2023.

On a scale of one to ten, I would give Skype for Business a six.

Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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Buyer's Guide
Download our free Skype for Business Report and get advice and tips from experienced pros sharing their opinions.
Updated: April 2022
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Buyer's Guide
Download our free Skype for Business Report and get advice and tips from experienced pros sharing their opinions.