A couple of years ago Microsoft created an innovative team with the goal of thinking outside of the normal corporate bureaucracy of Microsoft and coming up with a communications system for SMB’s (small and medium businesses). The result was the Response Point system.
Response Point was a powerful tool, offering SMB’s enterprise-class communications features at a cost-effective price that wouldn’t break an SMB budget. Unfortunately for Response Point they were also aggressivley developing Office Communications Server 2007 and their Unified Communications platform and the two are not compatible with each other. That lack of integration or upgrade path from one to the other is a significant part of why Microsoft has decided to kill Response Point.
SMB’s still need communications though. Joe Schurman, CEO of Evangelyze Communications and author of Microsoft Voice and Unified Communications, wrote a blog post with a sort of post mortem assessment of Response Point and some advice for Microsoft on how to proceed to capture that same SMB market and get them migrated to OCS 2007 and Microsoft UC.