Unified communications (UC) is the integration of real-time communication services such as instant messaging (chat), presence information, telephony (including IP telephony), video conferencing, data sharing (including web connected electronic whiteboards aka IWB’s or Interactive White Boards), call control and speech recognition with non-real-time communication services such as unified messaging (integrated voicemail, e-mail, SMS and fax). UC is not a single product, but a set of products that provides a consistent unified user interface and user experience across multiple devices and media types.

There are a number of tools out there on unified communications and many others on instant messaging and unified messaging. My company is switching to Microsoft Lync from IBM Sametime then i started wondering what are the differences between this two UC suites or others out there in terms of cost, functionality, flexibility, collaboration and use.

Microsoft Lync ushers in a new connected user experience transforming every communication into an interaction that is more collaborative, engaging, and accessible from anywhere. For IT, the benefits are equally powerful, with a highly secure and reliable system that works with existing tools and systems for easier management, lower cost of ownership, smoother deployment and migration, and greater choice and flexibility.

IBM Sametime software provides users a unified user experience across a broad range of integrated real-time communications services—voice, data and video. Designed to help a social business be more nimble, Sametime software provides an immediate and cost effective way to take action across your organization and with business partners and customers.. It also provides a unified communications and collaboration platform, with built-in integration with many productivity and collaborative applications and with open-standards-based tools to help developers provide Sametime services into business processes. Read more

Cisco UC Suite is said to Unify voice, video, data, and mobile applications on fixed and mobile networks to deliver a media-rich collaboration experience.

On Linux Enterprise solutions, SwitchVox comes handy and with its power-packed, yet simple set of features, it will maximize your business communications, propelling you to success. It’s all included—everything comes with Switchvox. Like the slogan, why call when you can communicate.

I know people out there use these systems, My question is which are you using and why?