I have seen a lot of information or should I say misinformation recently around ACE about what it does and what it can save you when combined with Lync. Most of you know by now I have never been a believer in plugins, even before I started working at Microsoft I was never a fan. My first tests with plugins showed me just how disjointed a user experience they really are. Paired with that is the misinformation that vendors are spreading around licensing cost savings with being able to go back to Standard Cal for Lync because of a plugin that only does telephony which by the way is not free in it self.
So if you are a company running Lync and Avaya comes knocking with ACE here are a few questions to ask:
- How does ACE support VPNLess access?
- How Does ACE work with Lync Federation?
- How does ACE tie in with my CEBP presence enabled applications?
- How does ACE support video?
- How does ACE support dynamic location aware E911?
- What about dynamic bandwidth codecs on the internet?
- Lync Audio and web conferencing support?
- If I drop back to Standard Cal with Lync can I still use Lync audio, video and web conferencing?
- Does ACE support media Encryption?
- Is the ACE integration supported by Microsoft?
- How long after a Microsoft releases a new version of Lync does ACE support become available?
- If I use ACE, what is the conferencing experience like?
- What additional components and costs are needed for Avaya’s conferencing solution?
- Can I escalate a peer2peer voice session into a Lync data collaboration experience? How many steps are required?
- What happens to call control if ACE is un-available but Lync is? Isn't that confusing to my end-users?
You will be surprised by just how many of these answers are no, breaking the UC experience or offering you limited support. I strongly encourage people to read my post on plugins versus native to see more of my insight as to why breaking the Lync experience to preserve a legacy deployment with a plugin is not as easy as competitors make out.