Conferencing In The Spotlight
Posted on 05/03/2019
Conferencing In The Spotlight
Ian Brindle Nimans’ Head of Sales, UC Devices, looks at the latest trends….
Facebook, Amazon, Google, Microsoft, and to a lesser extent Apple have all made moves to take a bigger bite out of the social and enterprise video markets. How is this impacting the business market?
For me the impact on the business market isn’t that big just now. A lot of consumer-based apps are having a positive affect in terms of increasing user adoption and awareness. Microsoft covers all bases but something like FaceTime isn’t going to cut it in a business environment. What it does do is enable people to experience the benefits of visual communication rather than an email or a voice call. This influences and shapes their behaviour and expectations when they arrive into work.
What impact are the team working apps having on the conferencing market?
There’s no doubt team style apps are driving adoption of conferencing in work situations, both in the office and through mobility. Traditional room-based solutions are changing too as the whole market continues to evolve. In general the high sales volumes are all around the huddle space. Collaboration solutions particularly Skype for Business and Teams are having a notable impact. There’s far more choice now, either software or hardware driven.
Is video taking the place of audio-only solutions as the rise of digital means it’s easy to add video communication to devices and spaces that were previously audio-only?
What we are finding is where people would have invested in a high end audio only solution into a meeting room environment, they can now add video for almost the same price as part of a huddle room collaboration solution. It makes common sense for them to do so. However at the lower end of the market audio-only is holding its own but in the majority of huddle space sites then video is being introduced more and more, working in tandem with audio.
What is the next stage of evolution for this market?
This year has already seen a spike in plug and play complete conferencing solutions. These have been manufactured to be easy to install and use, with high quality 4k cameras at a fraction of the price of what would have been paid say 10 years ago.
There’s a lot more interoperability through cloud service providers and this will shape the market too. You can talk to multiple devices through one cloud solution and it’s becoming more of an affordable OPEX model. Historically where people were using on-premise bridges etc - an OPEX cloud model now is far more cost effective.
Overall there’s still lots of healthy growth across all areas of the market but especially huddle room environments. This is where us and our customers are focusing lots of attention.
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