Telecom supplier MCI is working with Microsoft to develop and deploy new IP-based voice and data technology for customers.
The two companies are focusing their joint development on Session Initiation Protocol (SIP) technology, "presence-based" voice over IP applications, shared communications and secure instant messaging solutions.
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The technology will enable business customers to collaborate and communicate in real time. For example, presence technology allows users to see who is logged onto the network and can therefore quickly be contacted.
Nancy Gofus, senior vice-president of MCI product management, said, "Our customers will see immediate benefit with the next generation of MCI Net Conferencing solutions, powered by Microsoft Office Live Meeting."
MCI Net Conferencing is being integrated with Microsoft’s new Office Live Communications Server 2005, to make it easier for users to communicate with colleagues over the web and across mobile networks.
The battle to acquire MCI is hotting up, with Qwest Communications having tabled an improved $8bn (£4.44bn) offer for the company.
The MCI board had already accepted a $6.7bn offer from Verizon Communications, but says it will look at Qwest’s improved offer "closely".