[Update 2014-06-23]: Just access my Office 365 Administration to make some changes and figured I would check up on this. It looks like for now AT&T North America has been removed from the list of Lync-to-Phone Providers 🙁 For now I’ll stick with VOIP Connections and hope for a change sooner rather than later…
[Update 2014-03-24]: Thanks to another post in the Office 365 Forums, I was led to this: http://ovum.com/2014/02/24/pstn-calling-will-boost-the-lync-online-value-proposition/. While the post is alread about a month old, based on what I’m reading their, it sould like Lync to Phone is coming to Office 365 via AT&T at sometime in the future. Additional it appears it isn’t just AT&T, but three other vendors are also working on providing the service: KPN, Telenor, and Vodafone. However, it isn’t coming all at once and unfortunately the article does give any information in terms of dates the following stages may be rolled out. The three stages of the rollout defined in the article are:
- “At first, the operators will be able to assign phone numbers and provide PSTN connectivity only to businesses that have ordered Lync Online from them. AT&T, for example, will only be able to provide PSTN calling for Lync Online to businesses that have ordered Lync Online or Office 365 from AT&T.”
- “Later, operators will be able to provide PSTN calling for Lync Online to businesses that have ordered Lync Online or Office 365 from another provider or direct from Microsoft.”
- “Later still, businesses will be able to order PSTN calling directly from Microsoft. Microsoft will presumably still rely on operator partners for PSTN connectivity, rather than somehow integrating Lync with Skype and Skype Out’s ability to dial PSTN numbers. However, Microsoft has not yet detailed how this third option would work, nor has it stated when each of these ordering options will be available to customers.”
[Update 2014-02-19]: Unfortunately, I have gotten zero feedback from anybody regarding this, so I’m still not sure what to expect. However, I did come across this blog post: http://community.office365.com/en-us/blogs/office_365_community_blog/archive/2013/02/11/lync-to-phone-what-is-is-and-how-it-works.aspx?PageIndex=1#comments. While the blog post is older, it has comments on it as recent as 2 weeks ago. It also led me to this site: https://aps.att.com/apps/3391#!editions which has a beta/trial for the Lync-to-Phone plan. While it isn’t anything conlusive both in terms of functionality as well as in any expected time frame, it is interesting none the less. I’ll keep posting updates if I can figure anything out and would welcome any feedback from anyone that can provide any additional insight/knowledge into what’s coming. Maybe some updates at the SharePoint Conference in a couple weeks?
[Original Post]: I was poking around in my Office 365 Admin settings the other day and took a swing by the Lync to Phone settings. Previously I used Jajah for Lync to Phone and loved it! Then, they discontinued the service and many people were stuck without any option for a Lync to Phone provider. Yesterday when I opened up the settings I noticed AT&T North America listed as a provider.
However, here is where the question comes in. I haven’t seen anything about this anywhere, nor been able to find any information about how to configure this or where to get the AT&T plan that works with Office 365. I know you can buy Office 365 from AT&T as well, and maybe this is only applicable in that case? Just curious if anyone knows of any details about this as I would love to have Lync to Phone back again.