A guest post from Brennon Kwok, Polycom Asia Pacific’s regional UC Solution Architect for Microsoft and recognised by Microsoft as aLync MVP:
At our recently held webinar ‘Click-to-join with Polycom RealConnect and Skype for Business’, we received a lot of interest and queries particularly around integration and use cases. Here, we reproduce some of the frequently asked questions about this solution and we invite you to submit your own queries.
What are the basic ‘click to join’ components of this solution? Polycom’s RealConnect solution components include the Polycom RealPresence Clarity infrastructre, an on-premise Skype for Business infrastructure and the room video endpoints as well as the Skype for Business clients.
Can you explain the port usage? Polycom RealConnect uses less ports compared with other types of "meet-on-the-bridge" solutions. In RealConnect, the room video endpoints make use of the Polycom MCU while Skype for Business clients use the AVMCU. Both MCUs are used concurrently using MCU cascading, and hence uses less resources on the MCU. For "Meet-on-the-Bridge" solutions, all room video endpoints as well as Skype for Business clients make use of only the video MCU, and is therefore less scalable than RealConnect.
Can my existing Polycom hardware also connect via Skype for Business so that I benefit from some of the features we saw today? Yes existing Polycom hardware such as RealPresence Group Series and RealPresence Platform infrastructure running recent versions of hardware and software can be integrated with Skype for Business.
I have three devices with Cisco C20. Is it compatible with Skype for Business solutions? Cisco C20 endpoints can be used with Polycom RealConnect to connect with Skype for Business. In fact many customers using Cisco endpoints are using RealConnect today to collaborate with Skype for Business users.
Can we use this technology to conduct group discussions or presentations? Yes certainly. Video collaboration is widely used today in many organisations for group discussions and presentations. Polycom RealConnect makes video collaboration easy and seamless for both standards video endpoints and Skype for Business users.
Does it support the Polycom HDX 7000 unit? Yes RealConnect supports the Polycom HDX family of video endpoints. However, on 1 August 2016 Polycom made the formal End-of-Sale (EoS) announcement for the HDX product line. Therefore we encourage you to consider the newer RealPresence Group Series family of video endpoints moving forward.
Are there any problems with firewalls in other organisations blocking the ability to click on links and launch the meeting? The click-to-join function in RealConnect works differently from the click-to-join function in a Windows PC. For RealConnect, the room video endpoint will join the meeting from a touch panel or a remote control, which initiates the call into the Polycom RealPresence Clariti infrastructure using SIP or H.323 protocols. Therefore, it is not affected by firewall rules that block click on http links on PC web-browsers. These type of firewall rules will, however, affect the ability of devices that do require clicking on http links to join the meeting, as in the case of the Outlook client on PCs for example.
Do we need to physically host the Polycom RealConnect solution or can it be virtually hosted? The Polycom RealConnect infrastructure can be hosted by a service provider so that the end user organisation does not need to host it. This model is similar to a private cloud scenario and is already available globally.
Is there panoramic view capability? Yes, in the upcoming update for RealConnect technology, we will be able to display an immersive telepresence room using the panoramic view on the Skype for Business client.
What type of encryption is used for Skype for Business? Skype for Business uses industry standard SIP TLS for signalling and SRTP for media and supports 128-bit AES encryption.