Skype for Business or Lync with a Facelift? And how does IE WebRTC fit in?

lync as skype

Two days ago, Microsoft announced that “Skype for Business” will roll out in 2015. In addition to having retired Messenger, Skype will be doing the same to Lync, Microsoft Office’s longstanding answer to business videoconferencing and collaboration.  However, within the announcement were the following three sentences:

“…we’re adopting the familiar Skype icons for calling, adding video and ending a call. We’ve added the call monitor from Skype, which keeps an active call visible in a small window even when a user moves focus to another application.

“At the same time, Skype for Business keeps and improves on all of the capabilities of Lync, including content sharing and telephony.”

It appears that Lync isn’t being retired so much as being overlaid with Skype’s GUI and being rebranded. I was tempted to argue whether or not this really counted as being “Skype”, but then realized that a large part of what makes Skype Skype actually IS that interface.

Something like this was expected, of course, ever since Microsoft acquired Skype.  It’s a smart move:  Skype, despite its immense popularity in the private world, was unable to transfer that popularity into the business world due to security concerns and Read more

swyMe takes the Stage at Partners Symposium

Andy Oram, an editor at O’Reilly media and frequent contributor to EMR & EHR, attended the Connected Health Symposium that swyMed was a part of a few weeks ago.  He’s written about the experience on the EMR & EHR blog, but we’ve added (with permission, of course) the section regarding swyMe below.

It’s encouraging to see the progress of patient engagement at Massachusetts General Hospital, as reported by Gregg Meyer of Partners Healthcare System (the funder behind the Center for Connected Health that put on the symposium). But can small and rural providers struggling with cash flow join the movement?

These institutions would be comfortable using swyMe, a HIPAA-compliant telemedicine system that allows doctors to interview patients over everyday mobile devices and perhaps avoid a trip to the hospital. swyMe can also transmit audio and video from devices that EMTs can connect up to the phone. (Not many devices with the necessary hardware connectors are on the market, though.)

swyMe was one of the “innovators” highlighted in a conference demo. Jeffrey Urdan, COO of the company that makes it, told me later that he felt “low tech” compared to some of the fancy, expensive devices at the demo. But most of the providers in the US, and elsewhere, are more on swyMe’s level than theirs.

Please follow this link to read Andy’s entire article.  We’re thankful for the efforts of those making sure the medical industry is aware of all the tools at its disposal.