IntelePeer + Microsoft = More Cloud Solutions

The trend towards cloud-based Unified Communications nudged forward some more with this news that came out yesterday. It's been under embargo for a bit, but the press release tells the basic story. In short, Microsoft has formed another partnership to become better established in the UC space. Since stepping back from the SMB market and their Response Point solution earlier this year, it's clear to me that Microsoft sees a better/faster/more profitable upside to hosted and cloud-based services than premises-based offerings.

Regular followers of my blog would be familiar with the Microsoft's recent moves in this direction with BroadSoft, and a similar story is unfolding now with IntelePeer, a company I've been following for a while. In October, IntelePeer introduced their version of Caas - Communications as a Service - which I posted about. They certainly have Web 2.0 voice services capabilities, and their platform is a logical option for partners looking for a turnkey soluion to get into that space.

IntelePeer brings this to Microsoft along with a SIP Trunking service, making it very easy for channel partners to offer an integrated hosted solution for business customers. As noted in my CaaS post, IntelePeer also operates their Voice Peering Network, which mitigages most of the interop issues either between TDM and SIP, or across the numerous SIP variants out there.

As such, all the pieces are there for Microsoft-based channel partners to take advantage of cloud services and get their customers beyond simple voice services, and into today's world of rich communications services. IntelePeer interops with OCS, so there is stronger story to tell now about the virtues of a hosted OCS solution. That's good news for both IntelePeer and Microsoft, and in my view, even better news for those who think cloud-based services are the next big thing - myself included.