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IT Channel News Briefs, Dec. 22

Today's headlines: Microsoft preps OCS 2007 R2; hot telecom and Oracle topics.

Microsoft RTMs OCS 2007 Release 2

Microsoft released Office Communications Server R2 code to manufacturing on Friday. Microsoft has said the update will be generally available on Feb. 3. OCS R2 will add better support for mobile workers, including full dial-in audio conferencing as well persistent group chat capabilities, which Microsoft acquired in its buyout of Parlano Inc. last year. Microsoft first demonstrated OCS 2007 R2 at VoiceCon in October.

Top telecom topics of 2008

Multi-protocol label switching (MPLS) was a crowd pleaser this year in terms of telecom hot topics, as was the Border Gateway Protocol. And telecom service provisioning also placed in's top five telecom topics for last year.

Top Oracle stories of the year: From BEA to Exadata

The biggest stories in the Oracle universe started with the company's successful completion of its BEA Systems buy. That $8 plus billion deal made Oracle the king of middleware. Also a big deal was the across-the-board price hike Oracle pushed through this summer. The company's Exadata database machine and continued legal battle with SAP were also critical in 2008.

T-Mobile ditches handset upgrade fees

As an early Christmas present to customers, T-Mobile USA Inc. eliminated the $18 upgrade fee on all of its handsets, including the T-Mobile G1, as of Dec. 17. The fee cut applies across all channels including retail.

Check out Friday's IT channel news briefs.

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