Microsoft is expanding its work with enterprise telephony vendors to make its Office Communication Server (OCS) 2007 work more closely with office phone systems.
On Tuesday, at the launch of OCS, the company plans to unveil a formal program to certify interoperability between IP (Internet Protocol) phone systems and OCS. As part of that, Microsoft will discuss a specification to let enterprises migrate one building at a time to its software-based unified communications system and still have calls go across the organization as if on the same PBX (private branch exchange). Two models of Cisco Systems' popular ISR (Integrated Services Router) branch-office platform will be among the products certified for this type of interoperability, according to Zig Serafin, general manager of Microsoft's Unified Communications group.
Microsoft's initiative, called the OCS 2007 Open Interoperability Program, will formalize work that has already been going on with some third parties. As that work has expanded, it's reached a point where it needs to be more organized, Serafin said. The idea is to let customers know what will work with OCS, and Microsoft will provide a table on its Web site where potential customers can check the certifications of third-party products.