• The COVID-19 pandemic has generated a seismic shift in contact centers on multiple fronts.
• Almost overnight, the strategic role contact centers play in supporting the customer experience has entered the spotlight.
The COVID-19 pandemic has generated a seismic shift in contact centers on multiple fronts. First, almost overnight contact centers have transformed from physical locations filled with agents and their supervisors to having a virtual presence where all staff work remotely. Second, now contact centers are the result of an evolution from voice-centric call centers as they handle multiple channels. Third, with options for in-person service limited or unavailable, contact centers have become central to managing the customer experience. How has the metamorphosis of contact centers transpired? That question will be examined in this post.
RingCentral is playing catch-up to competitors such as Zoom, Slack, and Microsoft, which already offer freemium plans.
Offering a freemium plan is a double-edged sword, but there are steps RingCentral can take to avoid pitfalls.
RingCentral just introduced RingCentral Glip Pro, a freemium version of RingCentral Glip. RingCentral Glip Pro combines RingCentral Video videoconferencing introduced in April with team messaging, file sharing, contact, task, and calendar management capabilities. Offering a freemium plan enables RingCentral to close a gap with competitors. However, providing a freemium offer also presents potential pitfalls. Fortunately, there are steps RingCentral can take to avoid mishaps. Continue reading “RingCentral Jumps on the Freemium Bandwagon with RingCentral Glip Pro”→
The unprecedented size of the work-from-home (WFH) population has made ‘collaboration’ a marketing buzzword virtually overnight.
To compete in the collaboration space, service providers and vendors will soon need to offer a critical mass of specific capabilities.
A monumental byproduct of the COVID-19 pandemic is a WFH population of unprecedented size. Eager to preserve pre-pandemic productivity levels, companies everywhere are seeking to mimic the in-office work environment. Service providers and vendors have answered the call with an abundance of integrated tools intended to facilitate team collaboration. Virtually overnight, ‘collaboration’ has become a marketing buzzword. Continue reading “Collaboration: We Can Work It Out – or Can We?”→
The SD-WAN market landscape in ASEAN has evolved. Many telcos have added SD-WAN as part of their enterprise ICT portfolio.
The ASEAN telcos could consider multi-vendor offerings and overlay-underlay integration as the next steps.
There are two types of telcos. The first type is telcos that are aware of the increase in SD-WAN demand and leverage the technology to drive their network services. This type often comes from a consumer heritage and is looking to expand into an adjacent market. In most cases, they are alternative providers. These telcos have accepted the fact that the MPLS market is on a downtrend and will continue to decline. They position SD-WAN as a value-add to complement their existing connectivity services. There are also cellular telcos with small/no revenue from the fixed-line services which see SD-WAN as a new market opportunity. These telcos have been aggressive in driving the market and leveraging their brand and connectivity advantages to differentiate against non-telco competitors. The second type is telcos that are also aware of the growing SD-WAN demand, but see it as a threat to their connectivity business. These are often the incumbent telcos with a large portion of revenue from legacy connectivity services. Most of them still believe that the declining MPLS revenue is because of competition, not due to lower market demand. These telcos also often do not have any SDN/NFV capabilities. Some of them offer the service quietly/selectively with a below-the-line marketing strategy. Continue reading “Telco SD-WAN in ASEAN: Significant Development, but What’s Next?”→
Salesforce’s announced acquisition of Slack came as a surprise, especially given the $28 billion price tag.
Although Salesforce and Slack make a natural union, the deal suffers significant drawbacks. Salesforce raised eyebrows last week by revealing its intention to acquire Slack. Careful deliberation of the journey which led to the announcement reveals what likely lies ahead for the pairing.
Slack came from humble beginnings as the in-house messaging tool for a company called Tiny Speck. In August 2013, the tool became widely distributed under the name ‘Slack’ and its parent was renamed Slack Technologies. Slack is an e-mail alternative centralizing people, information, and tools into ‘channels,’ thus making teams more productive.
Today, Slack Technologies goes by ‘Slack’ and has risen to new heights on the shoulders of platform enhancements, partner relationships, and fresh blood in the management ranks. Slack has drawn a global, loyal following of 12 million+ daily active users across 750,000 organizations. Despite its allure, Slack finds itself searching for profitability and in need of a well-funded suitor to rescue it. Just in time perhaps, Salesforce has come along. Continue reading “Salesforce and Slack to Form a More Perfect Union”→
TM ONE has expanded its ICT portfolio and strengthened its professional service capabilities.
However, there is still a gap in its partner ecosystem compared to other providers.
TM ONE held its third LEAP Summit virtually in November 2020. At the event, the provider shared various initiatives not only in enhancing the country network infrastructure in line with the government’s plan, but also in expanding its portfolio and capabilities as a digital transformation partner to Malaysian enterprises. Its focus is on the future of work (e.g., robotics, automation AI), digital competency or skillset, agile working, and Industrial Revolution 4.0 (IR4.0). The provider also shared several actual use cases and showcased its portfolio and capabilities in cloud, cybersecurity, 5G and IoT, and data analytics. This post discusses TM ONE strengths and gaps in the market as well as recommendations for the provider and buyers in the country. Continue reading “TM ONE Leap Summit 2020: Accelerating Digital Transformation in Malaysia Through Expanded Capabilities”→
• The IBM Satellite Cloud on AT&T MEC announcement is the latest indicating the mobile edge compute market is heating up.
• Telco edge offers advantages for speed, latency, and security and operators should look to build out both use cases and partners to add most value for enterprises.
Earlier this week IBM and AT&T announced a new partnership that will see IBM develop a new set of computing use cases leveraging its newest product for on premises or edge cloud environments, the IBM Satellite Cloud, which will run on AT&T’s Mobile Edge Compute (MEC) network. IBM environments will run on AT&T edge servers with private 5G connectivity to customer sites. The partnership will also involve Red Hat, acquired by IBM in 2019, which will focus on developing containers for the 5G MEC applications, enabling them to be readily moved from cloud to edge to on premises. Red Hat has a long history of developing open software for telcos across use cases like OSS/BSS and network virtualization, and is a strength for IBM when working in the telco edge. Initially the project will launch at IBM’s James T. Watson research center. Here IBM and AT&T hope to collaborate to build a set of 5G edge compute use cases aligned to key vertical industries such as healthcare, manufacturing, construction, energy, and utilities. The aim is to develop solutions that leverage technologies like AI and analytics towards mission critical applications like worker health and safety, industrial automation, or remote control of machines and networks. This IBM partnership is one of many for AT&T’s MEC solution. The carrier is also working with HPE, Google Cloud Platform, and Microsoft Azure to develop a set of cloud computing solutions that run on the telco edge. Further, AT&T is far from the only carrier in the race to develop enterprise edge use cases alongside the big cloud players. SKT, Verizon, Orange, Telefonica, and more all have partnerships with cloud providers like AWS, Azure, IBM, Google, and HPE with the aim of developing a new market for telco edge compute. Continue reading “Telco Edge: The Next Big Battleground in Cloud Computing”→
Apart from providing technical certification and accreditation to partners, enhancing their consulting/advisory capability is also a crucial area for AWS to win in the region.
Enterprises with strict data residency requirements should consider migrating their data from on-premises to Amazon S3 on AWS Outposts to access the wide range of features and development tools offered by the hyperscaler as well as seamless integration with workloads in AWS Regions.