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July 2017

Posts from September 2017

Polycom at 25 Years

Polycom, the venerable and long established leader in room based speakerphones, is now 25 years old. Yesterday they announced a series of new devices to celebrate.

Given the changing landscape and workplace environments, Polycom is changing for the times. Their new Trio line updates the classic three legged speakerphone while the new VoxBox takes aim at the mobile workforce, or as Dialpad calls them, the Anywhere Worker.

This latter group works in various spaces, ranging from home offices, to cafes, to the "huddle room" as Polycom likes to call the smaller conference rooms. Given the competition in the space, Polycom had to do something to move past their legacy devices, and as someone who used their Skype branded speakerphone for years, seeing the new VoxBox has me feeling they are on the right track in hardware.

But their real competition isn't only from competitors like ClearOne. It comes from Apple and the manufacturers of Google Chromebooks and Android devices. More and more I'll use an iPad as an in room speaker phone and get no complaints from people on the other end. Adding a mic to it via he headphone jack only improves the pick up, or connecting it to a Bluetooth mic/speaker further improves it to a point where the idea of a Polycom device of old was unnecessary.

Thankfully innovation is still alive, so with it, Polycom, should be able to bring back luster with the new devices, as long as they ship on time.

 


NoJitter's State of Enterprise Communications

The other day I was hunting around for what is happening in VoIP.  VoIP, which I built this blog and an agency on is like motor oil in a car. But 14 years ago, VoIP was like TESLA and electric cars. You knew it was there but it was an uphill battle. Today, VoIP is the way most voice communications travels. That's why when I saw the NoJitter State of Enterprise Communications infographic I just smiled.

I smiled, because Editor Beth Schultz nailed it with her statement about UC (unified communications) and Collaboration where she wrote:

"In comparing Team Collaboration to UC, Team Collaboration is almost as important as UC today, and within 24 months will essentially be just as important."

To me, you can't have UC without Collaboration as today's worker is not about being in the same place as the next member of the team which Diaplad, the parent of UberConference pointed out in their report about The Era of The Anywhere Worker. Today's Anywhere Worker needs to be a digital ninja, using the tools to let them work, anywhere. (another blog I sort of still write).

The ability to work anywhere is directly tied to IP based communications, voice, text, video, sharing and broadband or mobile broadband. Have the right apps, the right devices and the right connection, and BOOM, you're working anywhere. 

But back to Beth's prophetic view that collaboration and UC will be on par within 24 months. For many, that day is here. More an more, all my one on one and group calls are scheduled, and conducted over UberConference or Zoom if my team or I originate them. If not, those calls are on WebEX or GoToMeeting. I use those services as opposed to placing or taking a regular call, as the quality is usually better, and what's more, if there's a need to share a file or screen, versus sending an attachment in an email, it can happen.

In the case of the enterprise, so many workers today now WFH (work from home) so to those workers, collaboration at any distance is a necessity, not a one day my prince will come scenario.