UC Changing in Tandem with Technology and Networking Trends
The cloud is set to play a prominent role in unified communication (UC) and beyond this year, influencing and shaping virtually all parts of the technology sector. As the cloud-based consumption model becomes an entrenched part of technology, UC solutions and services are becoming more clearly defined from both a features and pricing perspective.
The cloud has changed the way businesses pay for and consume solutions and services and UC is no exception. UCaaS offers a host of advantages to businesses of all sizes, including no upfront capital expenditures and pricing linked to usage and service consumption.
UC is also set to evolve this year, with greater integration of voice, video and other collaborative applications. Consequently, businesses are viewing the voice, video and additional components of UC solutions as a single service and expect to pay for service consumption. This will obviously impact call accounting and management practices but will also streamline operations and procedures and increase efficiencies.
Microsoft (News - Alert) has been building its presence in the UC space with Skype for Business, and the company will continue to build momentum this year. “Microsoft has been playing with UC since 2007, and has gone through several iterations of its UC offering since then,” wrote Steve Harris, managing director at SIPHON, a company that specializes in UC service delivery, in an article for IT News Africa. “But now with Skype (News - Alert) for Business, and the Office 365 E5 license, 2017 will see Microsoft emerge as a genuine UC player. I believe Microsoft will ultimately be successful with its Cloud PBX (News - Alert) offering, which will start to have an impact on the UC market.”
UC security is also going to be a priority this year, as the number of breaches and attacks continues to rise. Companies and developers may be expected to move away from legacy protocols and session border controller technology will be better equipped to handle UC security as well as fraud detection and prevention. Consolidation will also be a variable in the UC arena, with legacy players like Avaya, Nortel (News - Alert), Mitel and Siemens required to integrate with new cloud-based and hosted offerings.
2017 is set to be an exciting year in the UC space and the technology world at large. As the digital transformation takes hold and permeates all aspects of networking and technology, UC solutions and services will evolve to better meet the demands of customers while keeping up with the pace of growth and expansion.
Edited by Stefania Viscusi