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MCI taps Microsoft's meeting software

The telecommunications service provider signs a deal to use Microsoft Office Live Meeting software to power its Net Conferencing service

MCI announced on Tuesday a deal to use Microsoft Office Live Meeting to power its Net Conferencing service.

The new service--targeted at small and medium-size businesses--is designed to let companies collaborate in real time via various devices using Web conferencing, instant messaging and audio conferencing.


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The two companies will also jointly develop new applications for voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP). MCI is already working with Microsoft on applications designed to let workers set up conference calls from their PCs using Microsoft Office.

Conference calling via VoIP is gaining momentum as more companies start using the Net-phoning technology to make calls in place of traditional telephony. Earlier this year, peer-to-peer service provider Skype Technologies released a new version of its VoIP software that allows up to five people talk to one other at the same time, irrespective of their location.

MCI said its new service is available now. The price will be based on named-user licenses, shared-seat licenses and time used.

The telecommunications service provider has also introduced IP access to its audio- and video-conferencing services to let companies use Internet Protocol for company-level collaboration. Workers using either IP or non-IP end points can be connected on the same audio or video conference.