Home » Skype for Business IP Phones- Move Them or Lose Them

Microsoft announces the final date for Microsoft Skype Business Online

Tim Jalland,
Solution Manager, VOSS Solutions

May 9, 2023

Microsoft has announced the final date for Microsoft Skype for Business Online (SfBO), which is July 31st, 2023. This means that enterprise customers have until that date to relocate or replace any third-party IP phones (3PIPs) before they stop working.

While SfBO was retired much earlier in July 2021, to ease the transition and protect investments in devices, third-party IP phones from the likes of Yealink, AudioCodes, and Polycom (known as 3PIPs) have continued working, but this will end on July 31st.

That’s just 13 weeks away!

Do you have any 3PIPs on your UC network? If so, here’s what you need to know:

  • Compatible devices that connect via the Teams SIP Gateway require no action
  • Compatible devices that connect to Teams, but not via the SIP Gateway, require action to relocate these
  • Incompatible devices connecting to Teams must be planned out and replaced

If you’re in the first category above, then all good. If not, there are options for you.

The Options

If you have 3PIPs in your estate, there will be a need to review them and take appropriate steps. We’d always recommend building this into a broader migration plan that covers discovery, clean-up, migration, and monitoring:

Discovery – If you are migrating your telephony to Microsoft Teams, looking to streamline and reduce costs, or generally rationalizing UC and collaboration systems, then now is the time to run a discovery on the existing systems in place, to get a broader view before undertaking work to migrate devices and services and 3PIPs.

Clean-up – This is a good opportunity to rationalize and reduce the number of physical IP phones on an estate. Devices and any associated licences that are either no longer present or in use (or are underutilized) can be simply removed. User personas and preferences can be identified and many of these can be moved to a soft client, such as Microsoft Teams. That leaves a much smaller base that might need moving.

Migration – When it comes to moving IP phones, identify the minimum. Pick out any 3PIPs. The best course of action is then to replace them with a modern and compatible device. Here is a list from the Microsoft website. If you are going to move, it needs to be compatible and connected through the Microsoft Teams SIP gateway. You can read a blog post on this topic, here.

Manage and monitor – Moving 3PIPs as part of a broader cloud migration and transformation program for collaboration and telephony is a continual process. And, it needs to involve an ongoing manage, monitor, and feedback loop. Particularly covering user experience (usability, quality, needs) and usage (managing costs and licensing).

The Bigger Picture – Cloud Transformation – Rationalization & Service Improvement

VOSS has a proven approach for this through discovery, mapping services, batch migration, and unparalleled automation and performance management technology.

Here’s how we do it:

We are here to help

In conclusion, it’s crucial to take action if you have any 3PIPs on your UC network, depending on their compatibility with Teams. Building a broader migration plan that covers discovery, clean-up, migration, management and monitoring is recommended, and VOSS is here to help if you need it.

If you would like to discuss VOSS for Microsoft, your Microsoft Teams environment or your telephony migration requirements, please contact us.