Today, when line-of-business managers and end users need to connect with their external business partners, they use an assortment of different tools, some more ill-suited than others. This communication involves a lot of ad hoc emails and mailing lists. Some people on the team might use Hangouts, others might use text messaging. We see folks that use Skype, WhatsApp, and even private Facebook groups and Messenger. For document collaboration, end users rely on their personal Box and Dropbox accounts to get around email attachment restrictions.
To ensure the most optimal experience for their customers, UC vendors would be wise to consider integrating middleware into their platforms.
In doing so, their customers are able to use whatever clients they want on their computers or mobile devices—and still be able to connect with their coworkers and external business partners, no matter which platforms those folks are using. This is possible because middleware takes care of the complex engineering on the backend to provide a smooth user experience across platforms.
Increasingly companies are relying on contractors and consultants to reduce costs and bring in specialized skill sets, among many other reasons.
While the trend helps, in order to get the most out of the cost benefits, companies need to provide contractors and consultants with access to their internal networks. Organizations then need to equip these workers with communications and collaboration tools, like UC clients, so they can do their jobs just as though they were regular employees.
It’s hard to believe that 2015 has already come and gone.
At NextPlane, we believe that the end of the year serves as a fantastic opportunity to reflect. So we figured we’d take some time to briefly share the news of our accomplishments in 2015.
Indeed, the last 12 months have been extremely busy for us—but also incredibly exciting. Without further ado, let’s jump right into the highlights:
As the market for real-time communication and collaboration services emerged more than a decade ago, there was a heavy focus placed on the technology that powered each platform. Everyone was always talking about what this vendor was doing or what that vendor was up to.
But that’s all changing, according to David Mario Smith, research director at Aragorn Research.
Many of today’s knowledge workers find themselves collaborating with their external business partners on a regular basis. In fact, some of these folks work with their partners more frequently than they do their own coworkers.
For these kinds of workers to be successful, it is essential that they’re equipped with modern communication tools that enable them to collaborate with their external business partners in real time via chat, presence, group chat, and voice and video calling.
To succeed in today’s fast-paced business world, organizations need to share information in real-time across internal and external teams.
However, despite their well-documented benefits, surprisingly 55 percent of organizations have yet to deploy any real-time collaboration tools. So right off the bat, because these companies lack UC platforms, organizations that have already deployed UC solutions aren’t able to federate with them.
A great point made by Chris Talbot about vendor interoperability issues.
It’s long been a problem within the unified communications and collaboration space; and it’s one that doesn’t seem to be going away. Interoperability is the hoped-for promise of UC&C, but with so many different vendors, technologies and cross purposes, it appears to be the Holy Grail that may never be found.
Although vendors would love if every UC&C deployment was made up only of their (and maybe their strongest partners’) technologies, the fact is many (if not a majority of) deployments use a little from this vendor, a little from that one. It’s a multi-vendor world, but as an article on No Jitter pointed out, those multiple vendors don’t play well together in the UC&C sandbox.
Ever since services like Internet Relay Chat, Prodigy and America Online became popular in the 1990s, online chat and instant messaging have become increasingly important in facilitating communication.
It makes sense: At that time, the technology was truly transformative. It allowed users to converse with their friends and family members in real time, no matter where they happened to be—so long as they were connected to the Internet.
Web Real-Time Communication (WebRTC) is a browser-based open source project that intends to allow real-time communication via voice and video—as well as document sharing—without users having to download software or plugins. In other words, the technology enables peer-to-peer video, audio and data communication between two WebRTC-compatible browsers.
Because WebRTC is entirely peer-to-peer, users don’t bear bandwidth fees or the need for additional servers or infrastructure in order to send data over a channel. A browser-to-browser solution, WebRTC offers end users the highest performance and lowest latency possible. Because of this, the potential business applications for the standard are almost limitless as every notebook, desktop and mobile device user could conceivably use WebRTC from a number of devices in the near future.