Microsoft Lync Online Review
Microsoft Lync Online is an online meeting software within the "Office 365" product suite. The software does offer all essential functionalities such as: screen sharing and app sharing, whiteboard, file transfer, chat, and video conferencing and audio conferencing. Prior to scheduling a web meeting the host is required to install an Outlook add-in or they can use a browser-based meeting scheduler, which is not linked to the local email client.
During our tests we encountered various difficulties so our testing team's patience was tested as well. Additionally, the installation of Microsoft Lync was complex and would not run on all Windows-based PCs. To join an online meeting, attendees can choose whether to install Lync locally or to use Lync Web App (browser-based version). When using the browser-based version, the range of functionalities is limited.
The bottom line: Microsoft Lync Online is well suited for planned and unplanned conferences. Due to the complexitity of the installation effort we feel that this online meeting software is more appropriate for mid-sized and large-scale enterprises and may particularly be useful for internal collaboration.
Runs on Windows XP or later, runs on Mac OS X: Office for Mac Standard 2011 purchased on or after October 1, 2011 will have an Office suite that includes Lync for 2011
Option 1: Office 365 for professionals and small businesses Small Business: $5 per month and user Small Business Premium: $12.50 per month and user Midsize Business: $15 per month and user
Option 2: for large businesses Exchange Online Plan 1: $4 per month and user Enterprise E1: $8 per month and user Enterprise E3: $20 per month and user
Option 3: Only Lync Online Plan 1: $2 per month and user Plan 2: $5.50 per month and user
Option 4: Lync Server 2013: different pricing depending on edition
Single and multi user license
Voice over IP and phone costs
|all essential features available|
|Usage is not always intuitive|
|ad-hoc meetings can easily be started via the interface and as an alternative meetings can be scheduled with an Outlook add-in|
|Installation procedure is complex and time consuming|
|Pricing and license options are publicly available; cost structure is complex and not easy to understand|
|128-bit SSL encoding|
|Runs on Windows and Mac OS X. Mobile Device Support: iOS and Android|
|Overall Score||7.98 / 10|
Review updated: Dec 2013
Price information updated: Dec 2013