Real Time Communications Featured Article

Real Time Communications Week in Review

August 16, 2014

With another round of ITEXPO now one for the history books, a slew of news items has emerged from the show's four-day run. While there was news across a huge array of topics, real-time communications got its share and then some out of the run. So with the show concluded, and a weekend afoot, it's a great time to consider the events of the big show and beyond as we look toward next week. So settle in, catch your breath, and let's run down the biggest events of the week that was with our Week in Review coverage!

First, we started with an important determination: users are ready for unified communications (UC). But the inevitable question followed: how to get UC to the user base? That was the basic premise of “Unified Communications Market Update – What's Happening and Why” a presentation led by PKE Consulting LLC & UC's Phil Edholm. Change is rapidly approaching the UC sector, Edholm noted, so being ready for that change would be of utmost importance.

Next we had a look at what Aruba Networks was doing in the field, with particular regard to bring your own device (BYOD) programs as well as issues of enterprise mobility. Specifically, Aruba Networks brought in the ClearPass Access Management System, which helps on these fronts by providing IT administrators with the kind of security support necessary to allow mobility and BYOD systems to be fully integrated into business operations.

While real-time communications is often billed as being free of plugins and the like, some have wondered where the widgets will get involved in the action. The answer to that, of course, is that in a sense widgets will still be on hand, but in something of a different form. We've already seen how easily WebRTC tools can be added to currently existing webpages, be these regular or mobile. We've seen Amazon's Mayday button and the idea of contact windows built directly into webpages. This kind of development will only continue the farther along we go.

Then we took a closer look at the cloud private branch exchange (PBX) and UC markets, and discovered that there were major moves afoot in this market. The combined market, according to word from Infonetics Research, would hit around $12 billion by the year 2018. With a combination of purchasing systems, maintaining older systems, and looking to hosted services, the market was expected to readily reach that total. Hosted PBX and UC services alone were expected to grow a full 13 percent in just 2014, showing the potential of this market.

Finally, we had a look at the new Zoom version 3.0, a platform which promised to bring a lot more into the cloud-based communications market. Not only was it adding a variety of features for business messaging, it also stepped up its presence in conference rooms, bringing additional host and administration tools. Bringing tools like push-to-talk messaging, vanity URLs to name conference rooms, and plenty more into play for $9.99 a month, with free upgrades available to current users, it represents a sound value for those considering getting into conferencing.

That was the week that was in real time communications, and it's clear that this week came with plenty of news. Our global online community, meanwhile, was at the tip of the spear, bringing back all the best in news for us right here. So be sure to join us back here next week for all the latest in this fast-growing segment, and every weekend as well for our Week in Review coverage!

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