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It was a packed room when Microsoft Principal Program Manager Bryan Nyce and Microsoft Senior Program Manager László Somi was going to talk about how to run Skype for Business and Microsoft Teams side-by-side. As an MVP I have been helping out in the Teams booths at Microsoft Ignite. A lot of questions were about how to integrate with the on-premises environment and what is the best practice when moving from Skype to Teams. This is a highly popular topic and is a shift from previous years where the questions were more about why.

 

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They started the session head on to tackle the coexistence scenarios. The moment you assign a Microsoft Teams license to a user, you are in a coexistence mode. Island mode can be a confusing mode to be in because you have overlapping capabilities such as presence and chat. When you start a chat in Teams it lands in the receiver person's Teams and not in Skype for Business and so on.

The modes available for good coexistence

  • Collaboration only in Teams, chat, federation, telephony, meetings and presence in Skype for Business
  • Collaboration and meetings in Teams, chat, federation, and telephony stays in Skype for Business
  • Teams only mode, chat, federation, telephony, and meetings are all moved to Teams
    • The Skype for Business client is still installed on your computer, but it is only a meeting join client, in case you get invited to an external Skype for Business meeting
    • Teams Only refer to the experience of a user who has been upgraded from Skype for Business to Microsoft Teams
  • Read more about the coexistence modes at docs.microsoft.com

The coexistence experience in Teams only mode for federation you need the latest click to run or the two months old MSI version of Office. That is when screen sharing buttons work correct in the interop scenario and you get proper notifications that the other party is using a different client then you are.

A common question Bryan gets asked is; when will you make desktop sharing natively available in Teams? His answer is; get to Teams, then it will be native, these modes are only made to be a step on the way, the end-goal is to get to Teams.

Before moving to the Teams features, think about your capabilities such as video interop, telephony, devices, and end-user training. László pointed out that you should not move the users to teams only experience unless they are ready for that experience. He recommended to go and see the adoption sessions available at Microsoft Ignite.

Two options for telephony in Microsoft Teams

The two options you have for telephony in Teams are either Calling Plans, numbers delivered by Microsoft, which works the same as it is in Skype for Business Online. If you have this deployed today, no change is required to get calling in Teams.

 

The second option is using Direct Routing. Hybrid Skype for Business with telephony for online users through your on-premises environment, does not work in Teams. In those scenarios Direct Routing is the option, you use a certified SBC to connect a sip trunk to Teams.

 

Before they opened to the floor for an extensive Q&A they shared their main key takeaways. I highly recommend you watch the recording and hear the questions asked and what Bryan and László answered

  • User adoption is critical regardless of the path you take
  • Recognizing the paths available for migration - Both paths are available to you regardless of your starting point
  • Identifying common upgrade scenarios
  • Defining the upgrade path most suitable for your organization
  • Understand voice migration options to Teams

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If you want more information and help with moving from Skype for Business to Teams, There are a lot of resources available to help you to find the best approach on you journey to Teams:

View the recording when it becomes available here:  https://myignite.techcommunity.microsoft.com/sessions/83478?source=sessions

 

About the Author

Ståle Hansen RD & MVP
Principal Cloud Architect at CloudWay