Microsoft is to release the latest update to its Office Communications Server and Communicator platform on 17 November.
Lync 2010 has been released to manufacturers, and includes major upgrades for enterprise IM, telepresence and conferencing within Office applications. The Lync 2010 Release Candidate is available for download.
"We are incredibly excited about this release, as it's the culmination of a five-year journey to help customers transform the way they communicate," said Kirk Gregersen, senior director for Lync, in a blog post.
The software will provide a single, open platform for unified communications that Microsoft claims will reduce legacy infrastructure costs and achieve internal cost savings by promoting more effective communication.
Microsoft is also planning a developer support programme to encourage the creation of third-party applications for the platform.
The company quoted Joe Schurman, a Microsoft partner at Evangelyze Communications, as saying that the Lync platform has "forever changed how our organisation develops and produces software".
Microsoft announced last week that it will offer Lync as a subscription cloud service as part of the Office 365 line.
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