IBM Extends Unified Communications Platform

by CXOtoday Staff    Jan 23, 2007

IBM has announced a new version of Lotus Sametime instant messaging and collaboration software that will include point-to-point video for expanded communication capabilities.

The release will also include integration with Microsoft Outlook and Office applications, support for Linux servers, and Macintosh clients. Built on an Eclipse framework, Lotus Sametime is an extensible platform, enabling anyone to build and deploy open extensions known as ‘plug-ins’.

This video component further extends the flexible collaboration capabilities within the Lotus portfolio, which also includes social software, messaging, e-mail and team collaboration.

With a simple Webcam, the new point-to-point video tool will let Lotus Sametime users enhance their instant messaging (IM) discussion or VoIP conversation in a manner similar to face-to-face interaction.

“IBM’s unified communications and collaboration vision is to foster innovation and business agility by making it easier for people to find, reach and collaborate through a unified user experience. It provides an open, extensible software platform that integrates IM, email, unified messaging, Web, voice, video, telephony and business applications across multi-vendor environments,” said Bruce Morse, vice president, Lotus Unified Communications Software.

New Sametime 7.5.1 capabilities will include:

*Point-to-Point Video, which allows users to easily expand an instant message and escalate to a voice or video conversation with another user.

*Tabbed Chat, allows users to simplify their desktop and more easily manage multiple conversations by consolidating all active IM sessions into a single Lotus Sametime window.

*Compatibility with Microsoft applications: This out-of-the-box integration provides businesses with the ability to launch Lotus Sametime capabilities such as instant messaging, voice or video chat and Web conferencing sessions directly in Microsoft Office and Microsoft Outlook.

*Linux server support gives businesses the opportunity to implement Sametime with the cost savings and openness of the Linux platform.

*Apple Macintosh client support: Provides the robust Sametime features directly on Mac desktops.