UCWA 2.0 general reference

Conceptual topics that describe the features and operation of the Microsoft Unified Communications Web API 2.0.

Applies to: Skype for Business 2015 / Skype for Business Online

UCWA 2.0 is a REST API that exposes Skype for Business Server 2015 instant messaging (IM) and presence capabilities. It enables developers to make their enterprise applications and intranets more engaging and connected to business contacts.

Key use cases that this API enables include:

  • Enabling anonymous web chat, a pro-active chat feature for e-commerce site, helpdesk, support, and other scenarios. This lets your customers interact with customer service representatives on your website or mobile app.

  • Lighting up Skype for Business presence in Line of Business apps and intranets.

  • Embedding IM experience in enterprise-specific Line of Business apps across platforms, browsers, and devices (contextual communications), especially Windows 8, Apple iPad, and others.

Although UCWA 2.0 is language-independent, you can develop using any programming language from C/C++ to Java, and the API is fine-tuned for web developers familiar with ordinary web technologies such as HTTP, OAuth, JSON, and JavaScript.

Key scenarios

Anonymous web chat

An increasing number of online shoppers believe the #1 feature of an e-commerce site is the ability to chat with a rep in real-time. Mobile users also expect support from within apps. The combination of UCWA 2.0 and UCMA 5.0 gives you the tools to delight your website visitors and mobile app users with a seamless customer care experience.

Line-of-Business applications

Want to IM the author of a shared document to ask a question? Or maybe get in touch with the most recent editor of a customer list in your CRM app? UCWA 2.0 enables the seamless embedding of contact card, photos, and more into line-of-business applications, providing a consistent, people-centric experience powered by the same Skype for Business Server already used within the organization.


Need presence on a Surface? Or contact list on Windows Phone? Have a sizable customer base browsing your site with non-Windows machines? As an HTTP-based Web API, UCWA 2.0 can be used from any language and any platform, as long as there is an HTTP stack available. Data is transferred as XML or JSON, both of which are consumable by a wide variety of languages.

In this section

The topics in this section provide an overview of UCWA 2.0 and its capabilities.