Microsoft Corp. is teaming with communications giant MCI Inc. to deliver Web conferencing and collaboration services featuring its Microsoft Office Live Meeting, the companies said Tuesday.

Under the alliance, MCI is offering Office Live Meeting to companies worldwide in the next generation of its MCI Net Conferencing Services. Live Office Meeting, which allows users to have Web conferences, to collaborate and send instant messages, in real time will be integrated with MCI’s audio conferencing services, the companies said.

The combined offering is immediately available and priced on a per-user, shared-seat license, and a per-participant-minute basis.

MCI and Microsoft also said that they are working to co-develop new real-time applications, such as services for voice over Internet Protocol. MCI boasts an expansive global IP (Internet Protocol) backbone, allowing the companies to rollout the new offerings. The new applications are aimed at allowing users to collaborate in real time using various devices and communication channels, such as Web conferencing, audio conferencing and secure instant messaging, the companies said.

Microsoft revved up its Web conferencing ambitions with its purchase of privately held Web conference service provider PlaceWare Inc. last year. The PlaceWare technology provides the basis for Office Live Meeting, which Microsoft swapped in to replace its NetMeeting offering.

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