UC Expert Views

UC Expert Views

To help you make informed decisions about Unified Communications technologies, UCStrategies provides articles, viewpoints, and a cornucopia of information from the industry's leading analysts and consultants, chosen for expertise in their selected areas to help you better understand the dynamic UC arena.



Do I Have To? Why UC Needs the SBC

By Joseph Williams November 25, 2014

When Microsoft first assigned me to lead one of its Lync partner engineering teams, I had to ramp up quickly on the infrastructure architecture needed to support the product. Most everything made sense to me except the Session Border Controller (SBC). From a simple architecture perspective, it seemed like a firewall solution should obviate the need for an SBC. My engineering team quickly educated me on why these are common misperceptions.

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Related UC Vendors: Sonus

Enterprise-Capable BYOD

By UCStrategies Staff November 20, 2014

BYOD is now the reality in business communications for many organizations, and IT departments need to understand how they can best support these personally owned mobile devices in an enterprise environment.

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Related UC Vendors: Estech Systems, Inc. (ESI)

Bridging the User Expectation Gap in Enterprise UC

By Evan Kirstel November 19, 2014

Many organizations are struggling with the perceived benefits versus the reality of changing their existing network architecture. While the benefits are clear in terms of innovation and flexibility, the challenge is, “How do I alter my network infrastructure to realize those benefits at a pace and a budget that I can afford?” One approach is a hybrid model that encompasses SDN-enabled infrastructure and non SDN-enabled infrastructure. 

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Related UC Vendors: HP, Microsoft

New Voicemail Options for Lync

By Kevin Kieller November 5, 2014

The AVST CX voicemail platform has been continually upgraded since 1982 and as such includes a much wider set of voicemail options than is currently supported by Exchange UM. Some organizations may welcome and require the wider configuration choices.

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Related UC Vendors: AVST, Microsoft

Outsourcing Enterprise Voice Support for Microsoft Lync

By Art Rosenberg October 30, 2014

The open nature of Lync presents a challenge to IT organizations who aren’t trained to handle end-to-end telecommunications issues. Microsoft solves this challenge through its Premier Support for Partners program, certifying third parties such as Dell to provide 24/7 end-to-end support for Lync to end customers.

 

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Related UC Vendors: Dell, Microsoft

UC-to-UC Voice and Video – Where and When?

By Marty Parker October 29, 2014

Farzin Shahidi, Founder and CEO of NextPlane, asked UCStrategies to take a look at the question of where and when voice and video will be of major interest for inter-organizational communications, especially if provided through UC federation and if linked to business processes or applications. Great question!

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Related UC Vendors: NextPlane

Adding Enterprise Voice to Office 365

By Kevin Kieller October 28, 2014

The Office 365 version of Microsoft Lync does NOT include the ability to place calls to or receive calls from the PSTN, the functionality that Microsoft refers to as “Enterprise Voice.” Enter AudioCodes One Box 365. One Box provides an on-premises appliance that allows you to use part of Office 365 along with a version of Lync that provides full Enterprise Voice capabilities. This allows you to keep the simplicity and productivity of using Microsoft software in the cloud without the cloud-based Office 365 limitations.

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Related UC Vendors: AudioCodes, Microsoft

Interactive Intelligence Moves to the Cloud

By Joseph Williams October 22, 2014

I knew Interactive Intelligence was a market leader in the contact center space and that it had dabbled in UC in the past. However, I got quite a lesson from Jason about how advanced the company’s become as a provider of cloud solutions, and how he believes the company’s new PureCloud offering is set to strengthen its UC play.

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Related UC Vendors: Interactive Intelligence

The Marvels of the Microsoft Ecosystem: Now There's AudioCodes One Box 365

By Marty Parker October 14, 2014

The Microsoft ecosystem is a marvelous thing! The Microsoft ecosystem opens up horizons and innovations that Microsoft’s customers would be unlikely to see if all development were done only by Microsoft’s own engineers.

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Related UC Vendors: AudioCodes, Microsoft, Plantronics, Polycom, SMART Technologies

What to Look for in a Contact Center Solution when Deploying Lync for UC

By Jon Arnold October 7, 2014

While Lync presents an attractive path of entry for UC, Microsoft is missing a key piece any customer-focused business needs – a contact center solution that integrates seamlessly with Lync. When businesses decide to deploy Lync, they are moving towards a singular solution for collaboration, and inevitably the contact center needs to be under that umbrella.

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Related UC Vendors: Interactive Intelligence, Microsoft

Dimension Data’s Secret Sauce – Blending UC with IT

By Marty Parker August 28, 2014

Dimension Data believes that organizations have three major challenges with designing and managing UCC environments. Dimension Data’s Managed Services for UCC (MSUCC) address these challenges in several ways, in combination with their cloud hosting options and their professional services for solution design.

 

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Related UC Vendors: Dimension Data

What’s Next after AIM PIC Federation is Gone?

By Phil Edholm July 29, 2014

In 2007, AOL introduced a SIP Gateway for Public IM Connectivity (PIC) federation between AIM, IBM Sametime and Microsoft OCS 2007. This allowed companies to use the AIM service as a way to establish federation between their Microsoft OCS 2007 or IBM Sametime systems to Cisco WebEx. As of the end of June 2014, most businesses with IBM Sametime or Microsoft Lync were using the AIM service as a way to enable real-time communication between their IT organization and Cisco, who functioned as their networking provider. About year ago things began to change... 

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Related UC Vendors: NextPlane, Microsoft, IBM, Cisco, Esna Technologies, Inc. (Esnatech), IntelePeer

Q&A with Sonus’ David Tipping on Mobile First, Cloud First

By Blair Pleasant July 28, 2014

On the heels of Microsoft’s Worldwide Partner Conference (WPC), I had a chance to speak with David Tipping, Vice President and General Manager of the SBC Business, at Sonus. Tipping shared his views on Microsoft’s “mobile first, cloud first” strategy and the role of Session Border Controllers (SBCs).

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Related UC Vendors: Sonus, Microsoft

The Via Group on CityNext, Lync, and Sonus

By Blair Pleasant July 9, 2014

Microsoft CityNext brings next-gen communications to cities to enable various sectors, such as fire, police, administration services, libraries, schools, etc., to improve and streamline communications and collaboration. City workers need to connect with each other and their constituents cost effectively, while enabling workers to be responsive regardless of where they’re located or what device they’re using. One Microsoft Lync partner that is embracing CityNext is The Via Group, which has a long history of focusing on the education sector, and sees cities and the public sector as a natural extension for the company.

 

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Related UC Vendors: Sonus, Microsoft

Time to Consider Web Chat

By Blair Pleasant July 8, 2014

Web chat is gaining in popularity for many reasons, notably the rise of the smartphone for interactions. Increasingly consumers are becoming more comfortable with self-service options, as it often saves time and allows them to seek help and information at any time of day or day of the week.

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Related UC Vendors: Interactive Intelligence, Dimension Data

HP Case Study: UC Pays Off For IT Consultancy

By Art Rosenberg June 11, 2014

IT consulting organization, Enterprise Computing Solutions (ECS), an HP Elite Partner, needed to upgrade its 18-year-old inefficient and costly telephony and voicemail system that used old analog T-1 PRI circuits, which were getting more difficult to maintain. ECS then looked at the HP Unified Communication solution offering that merges HP’s Converged Infrastructure for servers, data storage, and networking resources, with Microsoft Lync.

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Related UC Vendors: HP, Microsoft

Voxbone Offers Global WebRTC

By Phil Edholm June 3, 2014

Voxbone has introduced a response to the complexity challenge by directly integrating and hosting WebRTC into its global SIP, IP, and local number network. All in all, this is great way for enterprises to get their feet wet with WebRTC without having to go all out for a deployment.

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Related UC Vendors: Voxbone

Wanna Hangout? Can We Do UC There?

By Jon Arnold May 28, 2014

What we call UC they call collaboration, and if that’s what the market wants, well, the UC vendors have a big problem on their hands. While Hangouts is very limited relative to the UC solutions we’re familiar with, it will be appealing to certain segments of the business market.

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Related UC Vendors: NextPlane

Is an SBC the Essential Umbrella in a Cloud UCaaS Deployment?

By Phil Edholm May 22, 2014

A modern SBC, such as the ones from Sonus, can manage these threats and enable mixing services such as UCaaS and CCaaS (Contact Center as a Service) together easily. For all of these reasons, the migration to a cloud-based communication solution should include a clear discussion about how both signaling and media security will be implemented for all of the use cases, both for today and tomorrow.

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Related UC Vendors: Sonus

XMPP Gateways - Are They Relevant in Today’s Fast Paced & Demanding UC Collaboration Environments?

By Stephen Leaden May 20, 2014

Leading enterprises have been questioning the utility of XMPP Gateway Servers lately.  Have they outlived their usefulness and are they even still relevant in a fast-changing UC market?  

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Related UC Vendors: Microsoft, IBM, NextPlane

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