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12/13/2005
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Microsoft Ships Lightweight Communications Client

The goal is to allow non-Windows users to stay in touch with their colleagues via instant messaging (IM). The client is built using AJAX, or the popular Asynchronous JavaScript and XML, model.

Microsoft kicked off Interop Tuesday with the shipment of its Office Communicator Web Access client.

The Redmond, Wash.-based company first discussed the lightweight messaging client--for use with its Live Communications Server 2005--in June, and the software went to beta the following month. The goal is to allow non-Windows users to stay in touch with their colleagues via instant messaging (IM). The client is built using AJAX, or the popular Asynchronous JavaScript and XML, model.

Microsoft Corporate Vice President Gurdeep Singh Pall is expected to talk about the latest client at his opening-day keynote at Interop in New York.

The thin client does not support VoIP, however.

The company, which competes with America Online and Yahoo in consumer-based IM and with IBM and others in business IM, aims to make Live Communications Server 2005 a secure bridge between various IM systems.

Gartner projects that the worldwide market for enterprise IM will grow 20 percent annually over the next four years. In addition, the research firm expects that by 2010, 90 percent of all business e-mail accounts will have secure, IT-controlled IM.

Still, most current IM users are hardly secure--and typically run unsanctioned--by corporate IT staff, a fact that causes concern in this age of regulation. These IM networks are usually unmonitored and are not archived.

ALSO FROM INTEROP-NEW YORK:

Avaya Extends VPN, Video To VoIP

NIC Provider Turns To Channel

Networking Takes Center Stage At Interop

PowerDsine Rolls Out PoE For MSPs

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