Dimension Data Highlights Expertise as Global Telepresence and Managed Video Services Provider

Brian Washburn

Brian Washburn

Summary Bullets:

  • Dimension Data draws on its global professional services and in-country staff to operate its own successful managed video services offer.
  • Dimension Data draws on its own tools, global video hardware support organization for rapid troubleshooting and resolution of customers’ issues.

Dimension Data is known for its global professional services and solutions building, outsourcing, network integration, hardware device installation and support. While it doesn’t have the name-brand recognition of the carrier-side global telepresence services providers, the company has been steadily building its Managed Services for Visual Communications base. The company now describes having 250 clients for its managed video services, representing 6,000 video endpoints and processing more than 20,000 calls per month, combining immersive and non-immersive endpoints. Read more of this post

Managed Videoconferencing Homes in on Price Point Differentiation

Brian Washburn

Brian Washburn

Summary Bullets

  • Reservationless telepresence – emulating the familiar dial-in audioconferencing experience – has proven popular, to the point that the major competitors either have it, or are launching it.
  • Telepresence providers with a large conventional videoconferencing installed base are now drawing from these benefits, as their clients expand beyond immersive endpoints.

As Current Analysis has begun its latest analysis and update to the world’s major telepresence and videoconferencing providers, some trends are already becoming clear. Below is a list of issues that are currently top-of-mind for service providers: Read more of this post

Networks Do Matter – Really!

Jerry Caron

Jerry Caron

Summary Bullets:              

  • Networks and networking suffer from a lack of respect that defies logic.
  • Innovation continues apace, however, the industry often fails to give these advances the attention they deserve.

Networks and the stuff that make them work are suffering from a dearth of respect to which even Rodney Dangerfield would have to defer. Sure, we all know that it is lunacy to dismiss the value of both private and public networks because the quality of experience is utterly dependent on the quality of the network connections. This is a stone-cold fact, whether we are talking about a teenager looking at YouTube videos on a smartphone, or a business running mission-critical applications.

Yet while networks and networking have never been truly glamorous, there is a perceptible downward trend in love for the stuff of connectivity. It has long been the case, for example, that the hottest, most admired Internet businesses take public and private networks for granted and ride roughshod over them with something approaching complete disdain. If Facebook is sluggish, you don’t blame Facebook, do you?. Read more of this post

Business Video Has Yet to Go Viral

Jerry Caron

Jerry Caron

Summary Bullets:

  • The best, most urgent technologies demand to be controlled, not driven.
  • Business video can deliver enormous benefits both to change business models and to enrich collaboration, but the demand needs to be more obvious.

The use of video in business applications continues to gather momentum, and not only amongst the technology suppliers with a vested interested in promoting them. Indications are that use of room-based and desktop video solutions are increasing slowly but surely. And it’s easy to see why, as the quality, capability and—crucially—application integration are advancing in impressive fashion. Read more of this post

Immersive Video Considers Steps Beyond Inter-Carrier Bilateral Deals

B. Washburn

B. Washburn

SummaryBullets:        

  • Cisco rallied big global service providers to marry platform, service wrap, network, and business processes for immersive video.
  • If it succeeds, Polycom-founded OVCC could let providers connect once to work with many partnersRoom-based, immersive video conferencing has come a long way to mainstream enterprise use in just a few short years. There are several large vendors that put their muscle behind immersive video adoption. However, Cisco deserves credit as the juggernaut pushing this part of the industry forward. Cisco TelePresence System (CTS) endpoints and the Cisco TelePresence Multipoint Switch (CTMS) bridging platform are strong products, but the real revolution was Cisco’s ability to get carriers on board with the idea of marrying the platform, service wrap and network with providers’ business processes. Read more of this post

Time to Take Experience to Another Level

J. Caron

J. Caron

Summary Bullets:  

  • Experience-level agreements offering guarantees beyond connectivity are an aspirational concept.
  • But competitive market drivers are pushing service providers in this direction, which is encouraging.

One of the 2012 IT market predictions I discussed during the Current Analysis webinar in December related to so-called experience-level agreements. As I noted during the session, predictions sometimes are not really predictions at all, rather, they are expectations or hopes. The development of experience-level agreements certainly falls in the latter category, for the desire of service providers to gain differentiation by changing the game in relation to their commitment to customers is truly aspirational at this point. Read more of this post

Productive Collaboration a Target for 2012

Jerry Caron - Vice President, Analysis

Summary Bullets:

  • Enterprise adoption of now-generation collaboration tools has been slower than expected
  • This could change in 2012 – if suppliers get the solutions right

The calendar made its ritual shift from one year to the next over the weekend – just another day, to be sure, but one that no doubt triggered a flurry of Facebook updates and a torrent of Twitter tweets with even casual users joining the devotees in contemporary online social revelry. Texting is so last century. And as for “Happy New Year” phone calls? Well, I did ring my octogenarian parents, and didn’t even use video. Read more of this post

Desktop Video is Beginning to See the Light

J. Caron

J. Caron

Summary Bullets:

  • Desktop video has always been a tough sell, but now the value is easier to prove because the cost is lowering.
  • Skype proved the people do like to use personal video—if it’s free (or relatively “free”) and easy. The same will apply in the enterprise.

The time is fast approaching for IT managers to begin taking desktop video seriously. This isn’t due to the dramatic improvements in the types of devices and services that support personal video, nor does it have much to do with the incessant marketing initiatives driven by certain suppliers that seem convinced customers are wandering in darkness and just don’t know what they are missing. Read more of this post

Extending Corporate Video Conferencing to Mobile Devices

Brian Riggs - Research Director, Enterprise Software and Communications

Summary Bullets:

  • Mobility to be the next big product trend for enterprise video conferencing technology
  • There are a number of ways to extend corporate video conferencing solutions to mobile devices

The increasing adoption of video conferencing systems in the enterprise combined with the increasing adoption of video-capable mobile devices is set to both challenge and annoy IT departments. One of the problems is that the software and systems that deliver business-class video conferencing (from Cisco, IBM LifeSize, Magor, Microsoft, Polycom, Vidyo etc.) are completely different from the software that runs on the mobile devices wheedling their way into the enterprise as part of the BYOD phenomenon (from Apple, Google, Fuze, Skype, Tango, etc.). It’s unlikely that the two will learn to coexist peacefully anytime soon. Enterprise IT departments will continue to deploy on-premise or cloud-based video conferencing solutions that meet security and compliance requirements. And end users will separately use separate consumer-friendly video conferencing technology on their mobile devices with or without IT’s formal blessing. Read more of this post

Defining Buzzwords: An Exercise in Futility

Brian Riggs

B. Riggs

Summary Bullets:

  • Don’t worry about how UC or collaboration is defined
  • Focus on what problems communications solutions can solve at your company

UC, collaboration, telepresence: Those are three of the big buzzwords in the markets I track as an analyst looking at business communications solutions. People – analysts in particular, but also executives and marketing managers – love to discuss endlessly exactly what they mean, precisely how they’re defined. But here is a secret: It doesn’t matter. Read more of this post