Been running Windows 10 Technical Preview for the past couple of months together with Office 2016 Preview but we (MVPs) had to be mouth tied due to the NDA. However, with the recent announcement by Microsoft for Office 2016 for ITPro & Developer Preview, finally I can blog about the new Skype for Business Client (Skype4B). Microsoft has also announced the recent re-branding of Lync to Skype for Business (Skype4B) and it will be released as part of the Office 2016 Suites – bear in mind just the client bits are release at the moment. Unless you want to be part of the TAP Program (or maybe already part of the TAP Program), the server bits are not available at this moment. Skype4B will also be available for Office 365 Customers. Once you obtain from the link above, you would need a valid Office 365 ProPlus subscription to use the Preview. Here’s a guide on How-To by Stale Hansen – Got Office installed from Office 365 and want to test Skype for Business Client Preview? Upon completion, you’ll get a new Cool Blue interface

Skype4B Client Login

Basically the Lync Client GUI has been design as close as possible to the Skype UI but maintains the corporate look of Lync Skype4B Client Contacts         Skype for Desktop

Skype4B is still tightly integrated with our Outlook and this is once of the best thing to have – all appointments, schedule and conversation in a glimpse (Skype Consumer doesn’t integrate with your Exchange/Exchange Online in any means) Skype4B History

For instead messaging, Skype4B still keeps the “Tab Ribbon” by the left side of the program while the Consumer Skype appears under the Recent Tab

Skype4B IM          Skype Consumer IM

For Voice call, Skype4B retains the unique look which gives the “always ready for Video Call” look Skype4B Audio Call         Skype Consumer Audio Call Even the System Tray Icons looks pretty close as well Skype4B & Skype Consumer Tray Icon

When you perform a mouse-over at the taskbar, Skype for Business actually allows you to change your status on the fly

Skype4B06

This is just a glimpse of Skype for Business running with Office 365 – we should be expecting more features on the On-Premise so stay tuned!