Skype for Business is reaching end of life

04.12.21

After the announcement back in 2017, Skype for Business Online and Business Server are finally reaching end of life with dates set for their retirement around the corner. If you’ve not already, now is the time to start planning to move to a different platform, such as Microsoft Teams, here’s a quick look at what this all means…

Why has Skype for Business reached end of life?

Microsoft announced in 2019 that Skype for Business Online would be discontinued due to their confidence in Microsoft Teams being ‘the next chapter’.

In 2017, Microsoft launched Teams as “the hub for teamwork” as part of Microsoft 365. It expands the capabilities of Skype for Business Online by bringing together chat, meetings, calling, collaboration, file storage and more into a single platform. If you’re interested – here’s a deeper look into the feature comparison.

And Microsoft were right to have confidence in Team’s capabilities – according to Statistica, the platform had 32 million daily users on 12 March 2020, then, when businesses launched their remote working practices due to the pandemic, the growth didn’t stop! There was an incredible jump from 75 million users in April 2020 to 145 million users in April 2021. Showcasing just how capable Teams is to accommodate communication and collaboration among businesses.

When will they be discontinued?

Skype for Business Online will be discontinued in July 2021, the discontinuation of Skype was announced way back in 2017 but nothing was set until 2019, when they put dates on it.

Meanwhile, the server edition of the platform will continue to be supported, in terms of security patches and essential updates, until 2025.

Microsoft have circled these specific dates on the calendar:

  • Skype for Business Online will be unsupported from July 31st 2021
  • Skype for Business Server (2015+) will be unsupported from October 14th 2025

What does this mean for you?

This means that Skype for Business Online will stop working entirely at the end of July as it’s hosted by Microsoft.

And while Skype for Business Server will remain accessible, from October 2025, it will no longer be supported by Microsoft; this means that Microsoft will no longer provide technical support for problems, bug fixes, security fixes and upgrades which leaves users vulnerable to cybercrime, like harmful viruses.

What should I do?

We recommend that you begin planning to move to Microsoft Teams now so you can start enjoying all the benefits and collaborative features right away. In short, Teams has not only everything Skype could offer but so much more which makes collaboration and communication a lot easier among teams.

Here at Computer Geeks, we use Microsoft Teams daily to streamline our communications. In fact, with the help of the platform, we’ve been able to achieve agile and flexible working when in the office as well as a seamless consistent experience for those who would like to work from home.

Our friendly team are always happy to help, get in touch to discuss this further and see how we can help you to make a smooth transition away from Skype for Business Online and on to Teams.