?Microsoft Voice and Unified Communications is essential reading for anyone using?or considering?Microsoft?s range of VoIP options, from consumers to small business owners to enterprise customers.?
--Xuedong Huang, General Manager, Microsoft Research Communications, Innovation Center
?Joe Schurman has captured the essence of Microsoft?s vision and implementation in the areas of Voice and Unified Communications. This is an important book for those interested in connecting the dots between the present and the future in human communications and understanding why things are evolving in that way.?
--Gurdeep Singh Pall, Microsoft Corporate Vice President, Unified Communications Group
Microsoft® Voice and Unified Communications is a book that provides insight into Microsoft?s Voice and Unified Communications portfolio of products and services related to Microsoft Windows Live, Microsoft Response Point, and the Microsoft Unified Communications platform.
Here?s What You?ll Find Inside. . .
· Microsoft?s vision of voice products and services for consumer, small/medium businesses, and enterprise organizations including a foreword by Gurdeep Singh Pall, Microsoft Corporate Vice President, Unified Communications Group, and commentary by Xuedong Huang, General Manager of the Microsoft Research Communications Innovation Center.
· Technical guidance and information related to Microsoft Windows Live, Microsoft Response Point, and the Microsoft Unified Communications platform, including the newly released Microsoft Office Communications Server 2007 R2.
· Sales guidance for selling Microsoft voice solutions in the SMB and Enterprise markets.
· Examples of customized Microsoft voice and unified communications applications.
· Overview of Microsoft voice and unified communications security.
· Latest Microsoft voice and unified communications research and development.
· Understanding of voice, unified communications, and telephony concepts and terms as well as the history and evolution of communications technology.User review
Must read for those new to Unified Communications
Microsoft Voice and Unified Communications
Very readable and informative. Joe Schurman has a keen sense for the future of multimedia communications and the fact that to be successful a seamless integration to a user's desktop applications is necessary. He is also very knowledgeable on the Microft and IBM total platforms. Since most businesses are using the Microsoft Office environment it is only logical that Microsoft will be a leader in Unified Communications as integrated multimedia becomes more prevalent in the business community. A good understanding of the Microsoft Office Communications environment and competitors' platforms is presented. Personally a little disappointed that the Microsoft / NorTel alliance partnership didn't get sufficient traction I think the book falls a little short in presenting the fact that for large enterprises with specialized telephony applications Microsoft has a way to go. Contact Center, Web Portals to Customer Service, sophisticated Interactive Voice Response, and integrations to companies' CRM systems still requires the expertise of the large players such as NorTel and Avaya as well as specialized application developers. User review
Do not waste your money on this gross advertisement
When I bought this book I was hoping for an objective view of the MS unified communications portfolio. What I received was little more than several MS advertising slicks bound together with extremely biased commentary. While Mr. Schurman wants us to believe he is not biased towards MS as he is writing this book on a Mac computer (`so shush!`), the book is littered with examples of how MS is in fact his golden goose, citing 2 world training tours and countless engagements with MS solutions.
His references to MS and it's solutions are overly subjective, superlative to the point where you start to question his credibility, and sometimes borderline offensive. He discusses `visionary` features of MS UC solutions that have existed in solutions from Avaya, Cisco, Nortel, and others for years. He triumphs at the leadership position of MS in the Garter MQ for UC, but does not mention their absence (or relatively weak position) in the MQ for IP Telephony. And Contact Center. And Conferencing. There are literally hundreds of examples like this in the book that expose Mr. Shurman's bias towards MS.
With that said, MS has a very strong solution for Unified Communications. As a relative late comer to the game, MS is in catch up mode, but moving quickly. While they certainly have their strengths, research the web and you'll see most analysts agree MS is not quite ready to assume the responsibility as the sole telephony/UC platform for enterprises just yet ([,,.]).
If you are looking for a feel-good pep rally on MS, this is your book. In-between the love fest there is a decent overview of the MS UC portfolio, but in no way is it presented objectively. If it's MS product info you are looking for, save the $30 and check out the MS web site under `Products`.
Too much marketing
The book is good for a beginner who does not know too much about the Unified Communications space. Having worked in this area for over 8 years I think talking so highly about Microsoft (everywhere) and saying that vendors like Cisco etc are lagging behind is plain lies. The truth is that Cisco leads this space and will continue to do so. Microsoft is just getting its act together and has a long way to go. Not to mention that they have some good ideas but now all vendors including IBM and Cisco have equivalent products.User review
One of the best UC books written
Great book!! This book is a great intro to UC for the beginner or voice veteran. I highly recommend this book to anyone interested in Unified Communications on the Microsoft platform. More in-depth review posted here: [,,.]User review
No better book available on Microsoft Unified Communications
Unified Communications is one of those hot, `buzzword' technologies that everyone is talking about and many are adopting, or at least exploring. However, unified communications is also a somewhat ethereal concept with no agreed upon standard for what it actually is, and a playing field that is shifting faster than customers can understand. Unified communications is important and it will transform the way companies communicate and do business so managers need to grasp how to leverage the technologies. Joe Schurman's book provides understanding that readers need regarding unified communications today, but more importantly it provides insight into the unified communications of tomorrow so that readers can develop strategies that are effective now as well as the near future.
Joe Schurman is uniquely suited to write Microsoft Voice and Unified Communications. Schurman has been involved in voice and unified communications technologies virtually since their inception. He has been a successful consultant, speaker, and trainer, focusing on evangelizing Microsoft solutions, for the past 15 years. As the Founder and CEO of Evangelyze Communications, a Microsoft Gold Partner and Voice Premier Partner, Joe continues to be a respected authority in the field and a trusted confidant of Microsoft.
I was fortunate to be able to read the pre-publications drafts and to provide my insight and feedback on the chapter dedicated to VoIP and unified communications security.
The book opens with an excellent overview of the history of telephony and the evolution through VoIP (voice over IP) to SIP (Session Initiation Protocol) and other voice protocols, the concept of Presence, and the development of what unified communications is today. Schurman then goes on to talk about the use of VoIP by the consumer market using tools such as Windows Live Messenger, an excellent look at Microsoft's Response Point phone system for SMB's, and a discussion of enterprise-class solutions built on Microsoft Unified Communications technologies such as Office Communications Server and Exchange Server.
The book then covers additional topics like integrating collaboration and speech recognition into the unified communications / VoIP environment, and how to customize the solution to extend its capabilities. This is an area that Schurman has intimate knowledge of as his company, Evangelyze Communications, has leveraged the extensibility of Office Communications Server to develop innovative products like SmartChat, and the 2008 Internet Telephony Magazine Product of the Year, SmartVoIP.
Schurman covers more advanced topics like securing and virtualizing unified communications and voice, and a chapter for consultants to help them understand how to sell the unified communications concept to customers.
Unified communications is a quickly evolving technology (or collection of technologies) that businesses around the world are struggling to understand and embrace. Microsoft Voice and Unified Communications is just the title that these readers need to educate themselves on what unified communications can do for them today, but more importantly to position themselves for what unified communications will do for them tomorrow.