For Ignite this year, we asked a panel of our MVP Community real world experts to join us at Ignite and share what they felt were the most impactful, currently available, Teams features for IT pros and their users.
In this blog series we, we will hear from each of our presenters, as they will walk you through their demos and share tips, tricks, and resources so you can reproduce these experiences in your environment today.
Eric Marsi- Deploying and Managing Teams Phones w/ 3PIP
My name is Eric Marsi and I am a Microsoft MVP and a Microsoft UC Consultant at Innervation. I work directly with customers on-premises and cloud-based deployments to bring new meeting experiences to all. I bring over 7 years of experience from the different IT industry areas and can communicate effectively with network engineers, systems engineers, end users, and business leaders.
I have different personal hobbies such as reverse engineering/security research, skiing, and electronics engineering. I also spend a lot of my free time working with products such as Microsoft Teams, Skype for Business, Exchange, Hyper-V, System Center, and more in my home lab! I strive to empower others to do more by providing guides and assistance to everyone.
Extending The Longevity of Your Investment in Skype for Business 3PIP Phones
Organizations invest in many different devices for use within their organization. These organizations also expect to have longevity with regards to that investment. We are seeing this today with organization that have previously invested heavily in Skype for Business third-party IP phones (3PIP) and want to continue to utilize that existing investment. For customers that migrated from Skype for Business Server to Microsoft Teams, you will know that these phones sign in without much user intervention, so you might be wondering, “Do I need to do anything”. The short answer is no, but the long answer is YES!
If your organization is planning to purchase new Teams-Native devices by the end of the year, not much is needed to be done and you can continue to use these devices as-is. If your goal is to utilize these devices into 2023 and beyond, you will need to migrate them to Microsoft’s SIP Gateway service.
Why the migration event you might ask? To answer that, we need to investigate what is actually happening in the backend.
Skype for Business Server, Skype for Business Online, and Microsoft Teams all used to be offerings from Microsoft at one point in time. Though, as of July 31, 2021, Microsoft has removed the ability for users to sign into Skype for Business Online and “terminated” the service, however, this service is still there, fully operational in Microsoft’s backend. The service is needed for a few activities today that include user migrations from Skype for Business Server (user Objects are moved to SFBO and then a backend microservice translated the SFB Data to Teams), Cloud Auto Attendants & Call Queues Interop with on-premises, and 3PIP Phones for use with Teams-Only Users. 3PIP devices sign into Skype for Business Online still and via the use of backend interop microservices, they can communicate with Teams endpoints.
Knowing this, we can see that Microsoft has a huge cost keeping the legacy Skype for Business Online infrastructure up and running when it really isn’t doing much other than running a few small services. This translates to a large cost for the infrastructure team and a solution needed to be provided to not only migrate existing devices, but also expand the capabilities of Microsoft Phone System for use with more generic SIP devices into the future. While Microsoft has not given a firm date for the end of 3PIP mode, they have previously tried September 30, 2022, July 31, 2023, and “Past 2023”, but it is better to be prepared rather than not. Knowing that, a cloud-born, cloud-native, and lightweight solution is here: SIP Gateway.
Outside of Pre-requisites that can be found here: https://learn.microsoft.com/en-us/microsoftteams/sip-gateway-configure, SIP Gateway needs to be enabled for the organization. Open the Teams Admin Center and navigate to Voice > Calling Policies > Global and toggle On the setting that states: IP devices can be used for calls. Once this is complete, we can move to provisioning.
The devices can get the proper configuration URL via the manufacturers provisioning server, DHCP, or via static configuration on the device itself. Please refer to your organization’s best practices for which deployment method works best. The configuration URLs by region are as follows: