This post follows on from my SfB Online Common Area Phone experience where at first i had a number of issues provisioning Common Area Phones for SfB Online which i had to open a Office 365 support ticket and Microsoft had several reports of the CAP Portal not working which has now been resolved.
This post is to show what steps i took to successfully setup and configure a CAP with SfB Online.
A little about Common Area Phones in General
Previously the only method to setup a Common Area Phone for Skype for Business Online was to create a full blown user and then licence them as a user then add Phone System then add a Calling Plan this made the cost of a common area phone very expensive for a common area phone.
A common area phone is a phone that usually in shared area and is not associated to an individual user, some examples could be a phone in a canteen , meeting room, reception, door phones etc. There is a different phone sign in process for CAP phones and are setup as devices rather than users.
My scenario is that Batman needs to setup a common Area Phone in the batcave.
Prepare Account for Common Area Phone for Microsoft Phone System with Calling Plans
- Ensure you have purchased the Common Area Phone SKU
- Create new user for the Common Area Phone
- Assign Common Area Phone SKU
- Assign Calling Plan (If using Microsoft Phone System with Calling Plans) I haven’t read if CAP are supported with CCE or OPCH deployments.
- In SfB Admin Centre assign a telephone number if you have one available or request a new telephone number
Ensure you have purchased the Common Area Phone SKU
Within Office 365 admin centre go to Billing > Purchase Services and add Common Area Phone
Create New User
Assign CAP SKU and Calling Plan
By adding the CAP it enables Phone System and SfB Online Plan 2 within the CAP SKU
and there my new user
Over to SfB Admin Centre
First i would check available phone numbers under Voice > Phone Numbers
I have plenty of spare so ill assign the first in the list to the Bat Cave CAP.
Over to Voice Users
Assign Telephone number
This can take a bit of time to populate, voice users only show if they have the Phone System licence applied but even after applying it can take time to refresh. Sometime reopening SfB Admin centre helps. I hope this will be fixed with the new Teams and SfB Admin centre.
There we go after i searched for it then it showed straight away and refreshed.
Assign number and emergency location
The number status at first is pending and we need to fix for activated again this can take a little bit of time and refreshing.
I click search again and refreshed.
Ok CAP User is ready to go !
Now we need to Prepare the physical phones
We need a phone that has a Common Area Phone Mode on it. I have a VVX400 which is supported for CAP on UCS 5.7.0 and also AudioCodes 400HD Series. Release notes on the AudioCodes here
See my previous post on upgrading Polycom VVX and AudioCodes HD Series to supported software level for CAP Mode.
Previous post link here
Enable Common Area Phone Mode on VVX
Back to the web interface and lets enable CAP mode on the VVX
Under Setting i now have a Skype for Business Setting option
Select Common Area Phone
Select Enable on Common Area Phone
Phone now displays CAP is enabled on top right
Lets enable CAP Admin mode on the phone
Phone is setup and ready lets try and provision it
Now the Common Area phone user is setup lets try and sign into the phone as the CAP.
Sign into phone via home screen and sign in or settings > features > SfB
select web sign-in (CAP)
this will generate a code and tell you to go to the provisioning portal http://aka.ms/skypecap
You will need to be signed in as admin
enter display name
If “Search for Common Area Phones only” is checked this doesnt work so uncheck and search again (Ive raised this with Msft Support as its confusing)
Now i see account
Under pairing code enter the code displayed on the phone and press Provision
Hopefully you will get succeeded and the phone will be signing in automatically.
Wohoo all done! we have a CAP with Calling Plans provisioned
Tried a few different options for CAP Account Setup for instance would CAP without a calling plan or a phone system licence assigned provision
Ive not read any documentation on CAP requirements and setup so im guessing here and trying as i go along so be warned.
For Hybrid voice with CCE or OPCH you would not have Calling Plans assigned to user as your bringing your own PSTN to Microsoft Phone system and this seems to work. so im assuming CAP can be used without a calling plan and for hybrid voice. Again there is nothing i can find to say yes or no at the moment.
How about Without Phone System licence
So you disable Phone system as part of CAP leaving only SfB Online Plan 2 (Which i think is cheaper than CAP so wouldnt really do this) Again no documentation so im testing.
so the user has CAP SKU but with Phone System disabled.
I even tried no licences at all but that said provision succeeded but never signed in which is understand and i had hoped it didnt work
Call Queues and Auto Attendant with CAP
Testing a CAP enabled with Calling Plans
Call Queues – Success
Add CAP user into the Call Queue Group and after a while calls were successfully ringing on the CAP
Auto Attendant – Success
Add The Joker into AA and it worked.
Hybrid Voice CAP (CCE or OPCH)
Both Call Queues and Auto Attendant seemed to work so happy days !