Edit: I updated this in “The ten reasons I still hate Microsoft Lync” in October 2014.
I’m stuck with no Microsoft Lync connectivity again, and in my frustration I thought I’d give my top 10 reasons why I hate Microsoft Lync. Maybe someone from Microsoft gives a crap and will do something about their awful collaboration suite.
It’s worth noting that I’m a huge Lync user. I setup tens of calls a week with 1-100 people on them. I call it from my cellphone, from my Mac, from everywhere. And I hate it, unreservedly.
This comes top. I never know if it’s going to work. Each time I set up a conference call I have a moment of Russian Roulette as I click the “join” button. And 50% of the time, there is some kind of problem (see below).
2) Wasted Time
It’s impossible to get a call started on time so you end up wasting an average of 3 minutes at the beginning of a call. That’s 5% of every call, wasted because of people joining late, technical problems etc.
3) Hello? Can you hear me?
This is the Microsoft Lync mating call. Because you’re never quite sure if the other person can hear you. Or whether groups of people can hear each other.
4) Regression Testing
Each time you get a Lync update, you can never be sure what’s going to break. With the current version, for example, I can’t join calls unless I quit and restart the Lync client. And every other call, I can’t hear the other person until I quit and restart the Lync client. Not minor things!
5) Call Quality
The quality of calls is so incredibly variable. Cellphones can play a part, but even with straight PC to PC calls, you never know what’s going to happen.
6) Dropped Calls & Messages
“No Response From the Server” when you send messages. Calls dropping randomly. All of this is a day in the life of Lync.
7) The need to spend time setting up Lync
If you’re an occasional user, forget it. You won’t be able to setup your microphone right, it won’t work, you have to download software to join calls. To use Lync effectively you need to spend time configuring and tweaking it.
8) Mobile Clients
These are abysmal. There is an iPad app but it’s got 2% of the functionality of the Skype iPad app. No calls. No video. No sharing. Why even bother?
9) Collaboration Features
These are the least reliable of all. I can share my screen if I’m on my company VPN and so is the other caller. Sometimes. For some of the call. Sharing PowerPoint? Why bother even trying. Send a file? Never seen it work. All of this stuff works flawlessly on other software like Adobe Connect.
10) Pace of Change
I sort of assume I’m not the only person that feels this way, but Microsoft don’t do anything about it. The rate of change with Lync is zero and it’s as if they don’t invest anything in it. Or care.
I don’t know what to conclude, to be honest, but Lync makes me miserable on a daily basis. So I’m thinking that the best thing to do is to get rid of it and use some other piece of software. But that means change and investment and we have already paid for Microsoft Lync.
It’s also worth noting that I came up with 10 reasons really easily. And probably forgot a bunch. So let me know your top reasons for hating Lync. Do you think Microsoft would give us our money back? 🙂