Conferencing Zone Week in Review: Zoom, AVI-SPL, Persistence Market Research

November 19, 2016

Welcome to another look at all the top stories making headlines in the conferencing market this week.

This week Zoom announced it was named a leader in the latest Gartner Magic Quadrant for Web conferencing.

The company was also named a “visionary” by the analyst firm last year.  The company’s offering provides conferencing via desktop, mobile and for conference rooms and experienced 215 percent growth with 15 billion annual meeting minutes.

Also this week, AVI-SPL said it was awarded the “2016 North American Managed Video Conferencing Services Company of the Year award” by research firm Frost & Sullivan.

AVI-SPL provides AV systems integration and collaboration solutions and stood out to the research firm because of its ability to meet a wide range of customer needs with its managed services portfolio.

The company scored high in the managed services market for each category and exceeded crucial benchmarking criteria, including: implementation of best practices guaranteeing a consistent level of success, price/performance value, customer purchase and ownership experience, brand equity, and customer service experience.

Speaking of managed services, another report from Persistence Market Research out this week says the video communication PaaS market will grow 40 percent through 2024.

According to the report, the market will be worth $97.67 million by the end of 2016 with a projected compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 39.2 percent until 2024.

Finally, a special feature this week looks at the ways millennials are driving changes in collaboration solutions in the workforce.

That’s all for this week – be sure to check back for all the latest Conferencing news as it happens. Until next week… 

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Lync Migration Week in Review: GENBAND, Telnyx, Kaseya & More

November 19, 2016

By Alicia Young Web Editor

Welcome back to the Week in Review, where we take a look at all the top stories making headlines in Lync Migration this week.

The week started off with the news around GENBAND (News - Alert) and its real time communications capabilities for Skype for Business. Paula Bernier writes, “It connected to the Skype for Business server for directory, IM, and presence access, but leverages users’ existing video and voice infrastructure. It also supports cloud-based deployments and offers federation to work with other applications.” This development is great for businesses, which will no longer need to buy premium Microsoft (News - Alert) licenses and then spend more on new servers and system integration. You can find out more about this cost-savings plan HERE.

Meanwhile, Telnyx is also making advancements in the Skype for Business realm. The company has just received its Skype for Business certification, making it one of the fewer than 80 companies that are recognized as enterprise VoIP carriers by Microsoft. Despite Microsoft’s strict standards, Telnyx received certification and is now able to offer its solutions to even more businesses. You can find out about its services and how it passed the certification HERE.

Later in the week, Steve Anderson switched gears to discuss the importance of security. Security is a growing concern, and Kaseya (News - Alert) has just introduced its new AuthAnvil to offer Microsoft Office 365 users even more protection. Kaseya AuthAnvil represents an identity and access management (IAM) system that allows for single sign on (SSO) authentication, as well as multifactor authentication (MFA (News - Alert)) and automated user provisioning all in one package. You can find more information on this security feature HERE.

The week rounded out with the news that Hewlett-Packard (News - Alert) Enterprise (HPE) has recently launched a new tool to help the mobile workforce collaborate better. Its Modern Workspace system “draws on several tools, including Microsoft's Skype Room Systems and hardware from Logitech and EventBoard, to deliver a wider total value for businesses. With this combination, users get a center-of-room control device that makes its use of Skype for Business flow a lot more smoothly, and using the Logitech and EventBoard hardware offers extra advantages in room management and audio / video input,” according to Steve Anderson. Essentially, this solution should make videoconferencing a better experience, once and for all. You can continue reading HERE.

While some exciting news has been highlighted here, that’s certainly not all that went on this week. Be sure to head to the Lync Migration homepage for all the updates, and come back next week for the latest insights. Have a great weekend! 

Edited by Stefania Viscusi

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How State-of-the-Art Call Recording Can Save You Big

September 09, 2016

Recording solutions today run the gamut from the most basic offerings to some fairly sophisticated ones that can be used for eDiscovery and other purposes. While you’re weighing the pros and cons of which solution is right for your business, you may want to consider that being able to quickly search for and compile eDiscovery information can make the difference between winning and losing a legal case – and in extreme cases, between staying in business and going under. 

“The importance of being able to respond quickly and thoroughly to requests for eDiscovery cannot be overstated,” according to Apropos. “Being able to quickly assemble a complete list of relevant phone conversations helps your company present a strong defense.”

Indeed. Being able to search by data, number called, origination number, and other parameters can greatly reduce the time a legal team requires to find the information it needs. While some companies offer professional services for which analysts and data forensics specialists come in to help identify, retrieve, and prioritize recordings, going that route can be a pricey proposition.

Of course, eDiscovery capabilities are just part of the functionality that state-of-the-art enterprise call recording solutions can deliver. Best-of-breed call recording solutions may also feature the ability to create phone records from sources such as squawk boxes used by broker-dealers and voicemail; automatic recording of all or just select users or departments; dashboards for remote monitoring; digital watermarking to establish authenticity; and mobile device management.

All that can not only help your organization avoid a lengthy and expensive eDiscovery process, but also can ensure your employees are providing the best phone service to your customers, and allow you to find out exactly what was communicated in cases in which interpretations vary and clarification is desired. And that could potentially help your business avoid litigation all together.

Edited by Maurice Nagle

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Select 2017 Chrysler Models Outfitted with 4G & LTE Capability

September 09, 2016

Have you been car shopping lately? The bells and whistles of yesteryear have given way to an explosion of technological features. While powerful features, are a nice perk, most of today’s automobile innovations require network coverage to put them to use – and for the champions of the pick-up and drop-off line, no service is bad news bears.

Today, FCA US vehicles announced the debut of 4G LTE network connectivity, specifically in 4th generation Uconnect 8.4 and 8.4 NAV systems. The first three vehicle models to reap the benefits of today’s announcement are the 2017 Dodge Charger, Dodge Challenger and the Chrysler 300.

"The advancement from 3G Network to 4G LTE network capability gives our customers a great opportunity to expand upon and explore the efficiency and convenience that our built-in connected services have to offer," said Tricia Hecker, Global Head of Connected Services. "As our Uconnect systems continue to develop new services and features, this increase of network connectivity allows our systems to evolve and progress as technology changes." 

By offering 4G LTE network connectivity, the end user’s experience will be dramatically enhanced due to improved responsiveness, high-speed connectivity in addition to maximum coverage.

The Uconnect  systems and connected services were first unveiled nearly five years ago, and in that time have garnered praise from Digital Trends and other industry benchmarking parties.

 In-vehicle “infotainment” is a clear differentiator in the car space. And with the ability to provide handsfree talk and texting, extensive audio options (Bluetooth, CD, USB and more) in addition to 9-1-1 and navigation options Uconnect systems sets itself apart from the field. The move to 4G should help in forging stronger, long lasting and loyal relationships with customers – definitely the parents driving on a family road trip.

Edited by Maurice Nagle

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Avaya IP Office Improves Safety and User Experience

Avaya (News - Alert) recently announced the latest version of its unified communications (UC) solution for small and midsize businesses. The Avaya IP Office release 10 spells good news for businesses and channel partners, as it has several benefits when it comes to security, resiliency and end-user experience.



This latest version of the Avaya IP Office Platform has several enhancements, one of the most important being in terms of security and resiliency. What sets it apart from the competition is that it has built-in signaling and media encryption for endpoints and UC clients that help preserve privacy and data integrity. This unique feature is provided at no extra cost, making it a must-have, especially since other pure cloud UC vendor offerings only provide encryption as an optional item, or not at all.

The increase in security could not come at a better time. According to a 2015 global survey report,  the number of attacks reported by midsize companies increased 64 percent between 2013 and 2014, from 2,581 to 4,227. The increase in attacks on this segment comes partly due to cybercriminals turning to midsize businesses in hopes of easy access.

Gary E. Barnett, SVP and GM at Avaya Engagement Solutions, weighed in on the significance of these security measure by saying, “The challenge of keeping up with growing, ever-changing cybersecurity threats is daunting -- especially for small and midsize businesses with budget and resource constraints. It's these very constraints that increase the inclination to choose cloud-based services; however, it's also not a given fact that security is or will be provided by their cloud vendor. That's why we believe security should be built into the solution as opposed to bolted on. It's essential, and a core component of our Avaya IP Office Platform.”

Aside from security, there are some other major updates as well. For instance, users are looking for a richer, more streamlined experience. In response, Avaya IP Office Platform brought out the H175 video phone, with a 7" hi-definition touchscreen display that is perfect for the personal, executive desk or a small conference room. Also, according to the Avaya press release, “IP Office R10 opens a number of APIs to make it easier for developers to create WebRTC based clients to simplify configuration and deployment for partners. Finally, virtual meeting functions have been streamlined and strengthened with WebRTC audio and richer collaboration capabilities.”

Jim Marsh, Chief Revenue Officer at Carousel Industries, commented on how much he appreciates these changes by saying, “With interest in cloud solutions further accelerating among our small and mid-size enterprise customers, Carousel can now offer our Powered by Avaya IP Office-as-a-service or as an on-premise solution. With Release 10, our customers will benefit from faster, more streamlined deployments and the built-in encryption, which provides a significant differentiator over other OTT cloud solutions.”

Edited by Maurice Nagle

Journalism and Content Marketing Need Each Other

Chances are if you put a group of journalists and content marketers in a room, you are sure to spark some controversy or at the very least cause some dirty looks. That’s because marketers and journalist aren’t always the best of friends, as they have opposing views on content.

Journalists often accuse content marketers of flooding the Internet with poorly written content for solely promotional purposes, while content marketers claim that journalists desperately need help distributing and promoting their stories across channels. 

The truth is, however, that journalists and content marketers can learn a thing or two from one another. Journalists, for example, are great at sniffing out creative story angles, getting the inside scoop, and creating compelling stories that grab the attention of readers.

                    Image via Bigstock

For content marketers, these skills don’t come as natural. Oftentimes, marketers get so caught up in pushing their agenda that they forget that the essence of content marketing is telling a story in which readers can relate. Marketers would be wise to take the same approach to storytelling as journalists do.  

While content marketers can learn how to write more effectively from journalists, journalists can learn a thing or two about the distribution and promotion of content from marketers.

It’s not uncommon for journalists to write a great story that eventually gets buried in the hundreds of other pieces of content on the Internet. Marketing professionals are talented at getting their stories read and more importantly shared via channels such as email, social media, and more.

There’s no doubt that the lines between journalism and content marketing are starting to blur. Rather than remain enemies, content marketers and journalists should try learning from one another.

Edited by Maurice Nagle

Is Your Company Giving Away Customer Loyalty?

Customer loyalty is something that every business owner knows is extremely important to the longevity and profitability of their organization. After all, numerous studies have shown that loyal customers not only spread the word about their favorite businesses, but they also spend more with those said businesses.

According to research from Bain and Company, in the apparel industry, the average repeat customer spent 67 percent more in months 31-36 of his or her shopping relationship than in months zero to-six. What’s more, on average, a shopper referred three people each to an online retailer's site after their first purchase there.

Despite the importance of customer loyalty, many of today’s companies are not taking the right actions to develop loyal customers. That’s because many organizations believe that their sales teams are solely responsible for customer loyalty, when in fact it’s both the marketing and sales team’s duty to build loyal customers.

Opposed to marketers, salespeople have a slightly easier time developing positive relationships with customers. After all, it’s a sales rep’s job to  

                  Image via Pixabay

have continual one-on-one face time with customers and to go above and beyond in helping them solve their problems.

Marketers, however, have a more difficult job in building customer loyalty, as they don’t have frequent one-on-one communication with customers. In other words, they are working “behind the scenes” to help build goodwill amongst customers. 

While difficult, it’s possible for marketers to play a role in building brand loyalty. Marketers, for instance, can build loyalty by finding ways to make their customers’ lives easier. For example, marketers can help enhance the customer experience through personalization, education, and more.

Whether your company is sales-driven or not, it’s important that sales and marketing share the responsibility of creating a loyal customer base. Only then will you be successful in creating longevity and profitability. 

Edited by Maurice Nagle

BelugaCDN Breaks New Ground, Becomes World’s First IPv6 CDN

When it comes to Internet protocol (IP), the old days of IPv4 are on the decline. IPv6 is rapidly stepping in to augment the overall system and provide more packet headers for us to put to use. BelugaCDN is taking this development to heart, becoming the first content delivery network (CDN) to become a wholly IPv6 operation and improving the speed and range of its content delivery operations.



Thanks to the new measures, BelugaCDN now features a dual-stack IPv4 and IPv6 network, allowing objects of all sizes to be moved readily through the network. This makes a particularly worthwhile proposition for users on mobile devices, as those networks are often somewhat less capable than land-based networks. Since most developed countries have exhausted current rosters of IPv4 addresses, the move to IPv6 is nothing less than a survival measure for large portions of the Internet. Even Africa is poised to run out of IPv4 by 2018, or just under a year and a half out.

The good news is that IPv6 is moving along nicely. It currently represents about 14 percent of all Internet traffic and will clear a third—over 34 percent—by 2020. While many smartphones and tablets can't handle IPv6 just yet—only about 60 percent could in 2015—that number will only improve, projected to hit 90 percent in 2020. That's actually quite a lag; only a little over half of smartphones can handle the system running about 14 percent of all traffic. Improvements are likely in short order, though, so any problems here should be minimal and of limited duration.

Meanwhile, BelugaCDN's move gives Beluga a critical advantage in the field, as it allows users to future-proof their offerings; IPv6 is going to be a very big part of the Internet in short order, and since BelugaCDN is ready for that now, it should put that company ahead of many of its competitors. Naturally, that isn't BelugaCDN's only offering, as the company also boasts secure socket layer (SSL) and transport layer security (TLS) capability, along with dynamic record sizing, perfect forward secrecy, and several other such tools that very few CDNs are actually offering, reports note.

The improvements offered up by BelugaCDN should make it indeed a desirable target for those planning future expansions. Not only does it already offer a great value for its users, with several features comparatively unique to the market, but it also offers value down the line by preparing for a future in which a particular protocol is prominently used. That means a better chance of continued operation down the line, and in the end, a greater chance of success for itself and its users.

IPv6 is going to change a good chunk of the Internet as we know it, and BelugaCDN is ready for IPv6, a development that should make its users very happy.

Edited by Alicia Young


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Moffitt Cancer Center Employs Ciena 6500 in Private Network

Ciena has been tapped to provide packet optical technology for the Moffitt Cancer Center in Tampa, Florida, which is one of the largest cancer centers in the country.

Specifically, the build will employ Ciena’s 6500 Packet-Optical Platform. That includes WaveLogic 3 Nano coherent optics as well as packet and OTN technologies in a single solution. 

The private enterprise network is being built to improve collaboration among clinicians, physicians and researchers. Advanced medical imaging, electronic health record, molecular medicine and personalized medicine are among the applications it will support. The network, which will span 50 miles and connect five locations over fiber provided by FiberLight, is also expected to be more efficient and cost-effective than the previous setup. That’s in part because the organization will save monthly recurring per-circuit charges and allow for efficient use of bandwidth and network assets.

 Speaking of improving communications and network efficiency in the medical vertical, University Technology Center at Penn State Health Milton S. Hershey Media Center could well serve as a model for what’s next in patient health care. That includes analyzing available data to look at what factors may predict disease and providing patients with more individualized treatment as a result.

The 46,000-square-foot facility on the health center campus in Hershey, PA., is connected to the university’s primary data center at University Park via a 100Gbps Ethernet network. It’s the largest network operated by Comcast Business in the Eastern U.S. and the third 100Gbps Ethernet network that the cable company has constructed to date.

“The new data center will help make personalized medicine more of a reality for patients and their providers,” says Jim Broach, director of the Penn State Institute for Personalized Medicine and Chair of the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, as quoted by Health Management Technology. “Data that used to take days, weeks, or even months to analyze may soon be processed in a matter of minutes or hours.”

Edited by Alicia Young

Industry Heavyweights Sign on to Support ITEXPO, the Leading Communications and Business Transformation Event of the Year

Digium, 888VoIP, Fiber Mountain, Grandstream, Sangoma, Sansay, Yeahlink and seven others join Florida Event to present the latest technologies and use cases

Norwalk, CT—September 8, 2016— TMC announced today the latest group of sponsors to join ITEXPO, to be held February 8-10, 2017 at the Greater Fort Lauderdale/Broward County Convention Center in Fort Lauderdale. ITEXPO is the communications and business transformation event where influential buyers gather to make their purchase decisions. The enterprise mid-market, resellers and service providers attend for three full days of content, six collocated events, powerful keynotes, an interactive exhibit floor and hours of dedicated networking time.

“With purchasing power and an annual budget ready to spend, ITEXPO attendees are eager to meet with sponsors and exhibitors to see the hottest technologies, case studies and trends,” said Rich Tehrani, TMC CEO and conference chairman. “We are pleased to welcome the latest group of companies to our sponsorship roster and look forward to the valuable insight they will share with attendees.”

Diamond Sponsor:

Digium®, Inc. provides Asterisk® software, telephony hardware, and on-premises and hosted Switchvox business phone systems that deliver enterprise-class Unified Communications (UC) and UC as a Service (UCaaS) solutions at an affordable price. Digium is the creator, primary developer and sponsor of the Asterisk project; the world’s most widely used open source communications software. Asterisk turns an ordinary computer into a feature-rich communications server. A community of more than 80,000 developers and users worldwide uses Asterisk to create VoIP communication solutions in more than 170 countries.

Platinum Sponsors:

888VoIP is a one-stop, value-added distributor for everything you need to keep up with the ever-changing world of VoIP products and technologies. Their Channel Advantage Services showcase provisioning, fulfillment, RESTful API, online purchasing, Tech Support and RMA services to give you the tools needed to succeed. Their VIP Program and Service Provider Program encourages customers to rely on their teams to deliver on all needs and questions to give the best solution possible.

Fiber Mountain, Inc. is transforming network infrastructure through its innovative Glass Core™ solution, which provides centralized SDN control and real-time visibility of the network and creates a virtual connectivity fabric of software-controlled Programmable Light Path™ (PLP™) connections. This enables Layer 1 SDN with automated port switching, and eliminates cabling errors through automated patching and Intelligent Connection Identification™ (ICID™).

Grandstream Networks, Inc. has been connecting the world since 2002 with SIP Unified Communications products and solutions that allow businesses to be more productive than ever before. Their award-winning solutions serve the small and medium business and enterprises markets and have been recognized throughout the world for their quality, reliability and innovation. Grandstream solutions lower communication costs, increase security protection and enhance productivity.

Sangoma is a leading provider of hardware and software components that enable or enhance IP Communications Systems for both telecommunications and data communications applications. Enterprises, small and medium-size businesses and carriers in over 150 countries rely on Sangoma's technology as part of their mission critical infrastructures.

Sansay is a leading vendor of carrier infrastructure products for session controllers, SBCs, WebRTC and NFV networks. Providing highly scalable and reliable systems that are easily managed with a full feature set for SIP retail or wholesale networks running on appliances or cloud services the business management for LCR and billing are provided as an integrated and flexible solution.

Yealink, the global leading unified communication (UC) terminal solution provider, helps businesses of all sizes make the most of their UC experiences and embrace the power of “Easy Collaboration.” Yealink One-stop UC Terminal Solutions unify voice, video and data, and satisfy diverse customer needs and usage scenarios. The company’s comprehensive product portfolio includes video conferencing systems, conference phones, desk IP phones, wireless DECT phones and accessories.

Gold Sponsors:

ABP Technology is a Dallas, TX based value-added distributor of IP Technology products and solutions throughout North America, Latin America and the Caribbean. The ABPTech solutions portfolio includes IP Communications, Voice and Video, IP Surveillance and Physical Security and IP Infrastructure and Network Security. ABP will be showcasing its new products along with DrayTek, Epygi, Grandstream, MOBOTIX, Patton, and Planet at ITEXPO.

NetSapiens provides advanced Unified Communications software to the industry's leading service providers, allowing them to grow their businesses and become more profitable with next-generation technologies. The NetSapiens SNAPsolution platform is a reliable solution for service providers looking to deliver a wide range of carrier grade VoIP features and functionality to their end-users.

Snom is a German multinational corporation and the world’s first and leading brand of professional and enterprise VoIP telephones. Snom operates wholly owned subsidiaries in the United States, France, Italy and Taiwan. Snom's German engineering is globally renowned for robust, high quality and feature-rich business telephones that are designed exclusively for the trained and certified professional IT and PBX installer.

Teli is a privately-held wholesale messaging and voice provider out of Denver Tech Center, Colorado. Teli partners can order services, control voice, SMS and MMS messaging, Local Number Porting, Voicemail, 911, and more via their award winning restful API. Teli also supports web-hooks and single sign-on support for custom integrations, and provides a white-label portal with built-in customer billing.

Taqua is a leading supplier of core network solutions and system integrated services designed to migrate legacy communications networks into the most advanced unified communications system available, while protecting the organization's existing investment. With a 16-year proven track record and over 400 communications networks deployed, Taqua integrates its core IP technology with market leading, best-in-class unified communications applications.

Vitelity, an Onvoy company, is an established leader in Wholesale VoIP, vFax, vMobile SMS, and Hosting/Colocation services. As the third largest CLEC in N. America (by rate center coverage) they provide local numbers in over 12,000+ rate centers which enables their wholesale customers to provide VoIP services to 90 percent of the U.S. population. Vitelity offers instant provisioning through their award-winning customers portal & API, rapid number porting, and unmatched customer service by their expert support staff.

Voxbone is the market leader in providing virtual local phone numbers (often referred to as inbound SIP trunks, or DID numbers). Its services enable cloud communications providers, international carriers and enterprise contact centers to extend the reach of their voice networks internationally, rapidly and at minimal cost. The company delivers high-quality inbound SIP trunks from 55+ countries and more than 8,000 cities globally.

For more information or to register for ITEXPO, contact Frank Coppola at 203-852-6800 x131. For media inquiries, contact Jessica Seabrook. Companies interested in exhibiting, sponsorship or advertising packages for ITEXPO should contact TMC's Joe Fabiano at 203-852-6800 x132 or Maureen Gambino at 203-852-6800 x109.

For the latest ITEXPO news, updates and information follow the event on Twitter at @ITEXPO.

About TMC
Global buyers rely on TMC’s content-driven marketplaces to make purchase decisions and navigate markets. This presents brandingthought leadership and lead generation opportunities for vendors/sellers.

TMC’s Marketplaces:

  • Unique, turnkey Online Communities boost search results, establish market validation, elevate brands and thought leadership, while minimizing ad-blocking.
  • Custom Lead Programs uncover sales opportunities and build databases.
  • In-Person and Online Events boost brands, enhance thought leadership and generate leads.
  • PublicationsDisplay Advertising and Newsletters bolster brand reputations.
  • Custom Content provides expertly ghost-crafted blogs, press releases, articles and marketing collateral to help with SEO, branding, and overall marketing efforts.
  • Comprehensive Event and Road Show Management Services help companies meet potential clients and generate leads face-to-face.

For more information about TMC and to learn how we can help you reach your marketing goals, please visit www.tmcnet.com.

Media and Analyst Contact:       

Jessica Seabrook

Marketing Director

TMC

203-852-6800 x 170

jseabrook@tmcnet.com

Edited by Alicia Young