Skype announced Wednesday at the VON Conference & Expo that the beta version of Skype for SIP has been certified as interoperable with the Cisco Systems Inc. Unified Communications 500 Series for small businesses.
This is the most recent interoperability agreement announced for Skype for SIP, a beta program that allows existing standards-based (SIP) communications infrastructure to connect to the Skype community. Earlier this month, Skype announced interoperability of Skype for SIP with UC systems from ShoreTel Inc. and the SIPfoundry open source community.
With today’s announcement Cisco UC 500 users can direct outbound calls to mobile devices and landlines via Skype, while also allowing them to receive inbound calls from more than 480 million registered Skype users. Skype calls are received and handled or directed in the same way as any other inbound caller.
In addition, if a company buys and associates online Skype numbers with their Cisco UC 500 Series solution, it can then receive inbound calls via Skype from business contacts and customers calling from landline and mobile phones.
“Cisco is committed to delivering easy-to-use technology to small businesses to help them run their business better and gain a competitive advantage,” said Mark Monday, vice president and general manager, Small Business Solutions business unit, Cisco. “We are excited about Skype for SIP interoperability since it adds a very cost-effective choice to the many other options within the Cisco Unified Communications 500 Series.”
Certification testing was conducted by tekVizion Labs, an independent test facility in Richardson, Texas.
To sell the service, Cisco VARs will need to register for the Skype Service Partner Program and pass an online certification exam. Details about the new Skype Service Partner Program are expected to be announced in an address by Christopher Dean, chief strategy officer for Skype, who is delivering a joint keynote for the VON Conference & Expo and the Channel Partners Conference & Expo, which are colocated at the Miami Convention Center this week.