Mobility is fast becoming one of the most important factors for Unified Communications (UC) and it is contributing to further development of the industry as a whole. In 2016 we will see yet more advances in mobility which will shift the focus towards the collaboration of devices.
The traditional workplace is no longer considered as a location. Today’s workers are increasingly found to prefer working from the location of their choice which leads to increase in the overall usage of mobile and personal devices for work. From this rises the challenge of interoperability – how can people collaborate from the device of their choice? WebRTC might have an answer. Initially this approach will simplify video interactions for customers who are using web browsers and over time it will extend to business collaboration as well. However, security traversal is something that will need to be addressed at the corporate level and through enterprise-grade collaboration technology.
From my point of view, the challenge of interoperability is the main hurdle when it comes to innovation. Sharing presentations, documents and work products in real-time is fundamental to all business collaborations and in the past, this has been a challenge in terms of consistency and reliability. It is extremely important that the overall collaboration experience delivered to business users via UC solutions allows them to seamlessly share high quality content automatically, simply and intuitively. This is where Polycom comes to play and can enable the workforce to connect consistently and easily across mobile devices, personal systems and group collaboration systems with the same voice, content and video experiences. Workers are able to perform tasks from any location, at any time, from any device, with the same level of productivity that can be achieved in the office.
In addition, we will see the consumer demand for preferred UC technology rise this year. It is a widely known fact that video communications is a critical part of an average millennial’s lifestyle; millennials are the workers of the future and they would expect video to be a part of their workplace technology. In a recent study commissioned by Polycom, 78 per cent of millennials indicated access to the technology they preferred to use makes them more productive at work.
During the annual conference Integrated Systems Europe in the Netherlands, I met with a few customers from across the banking, finance and government sectors. My belief is that the organisations across verticals are looking for a cost-effective way to support workforce collaboration and they want the environment to be highly collaborative. There is a real need for group collaboration and huddle room solutions such as Polycom® RealPresence Trio™ and Polycom® RealPresence Centro™. The customer demand for the ability to collaborate in huddle and to be able to extend the audio conference with on-demand video and content streams is changing the shape of the UC industry.
Polycom is continually innovating and has nurtured a long-standing and strong relationship with Microsoft. Microsoft Office 2016 and the switch to the Office 365 subscription service means cloud-based services from Polycom could help further our leadership in the unified communications space and we expect this to continue throughout 2016.