Beth Schultz
Beth Schultz is editor of No Jitter and program co-chair for Enterprise Connect. Beth has more than two decades of...
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Beth Schultz | February 11, 2016 |


5 Reasons Why This Is the Year of Video

5 Reasons Why This Is the Year of Video Enterprise Connect Video track chair Andrew Davis tells us why video communications is headed for the big time -- for real.

Enterprise Connect Video track chair Andrew Davis tells us why video communications is headed for the big time -- for real.

This is the year of video.

No, really. Andrew Davis, co-founder of Wainhouse Research and our go-to guy for all things video at Enterprise Connect, tells me so. He's been watching the video conferencing and collaboration industry for 20 years or so, and says he's never before seen such "tremendous flux" in it.

"Video, or visual communications, is really about to go mainstream," Andrew says.


If you're getting a sense of déjà vu, Andrew assures this time things are different. The market is changing, and is doing so in outstanding ways, he says.

Andrew backs up his assertion that 2016 is really truly the year of video by pointing to five trends and technologies making it so. I'll do a quick recap here, but if video is your thing -- wait, what am I saying... video is likely to be everybody's thing going forward -- spend some time with Andrew and the gang of expert speakers he's lined up for the Enterprise Connect Video track, and you're sure to come away well prepared to make video collaboration a centerpiece of your enterprise communications strategy.

Trend No. 1: Convergence of UC and Video Conferencing
Enabling video from within communications and collaboration sessions has become a cinch, as demonstrated in apps like Cisco Spark or GoToMeeting. Now viable as a feature add-on, "video for many people is no longer an app; it's a feature on some other application," he says.

Likewise, video solution providers like Enterprise Connect exhibitors Cisco, Polycom, Vidyo, and dozens of others, have embraced collaboration and support additional functionality like screen sharing and application integration. "So the collaboration guys have added video, and the video guys have added collaboration, and there's a real convergence here."

On the downside, UC and VC convergence does lead to confusion for some people. So of course, Andrew says, helping folks figure out what they should be using for their enterprise use cases is one of his goals for the Video track.

Trend No. 2: Virtualization of Infrastructure Products
Bridges and gateways -- "all the stuff that sits in the back end of a visual collaboration environment" -- is now offered as software running on virtualized servers. This has many ramifications, one of which is that virtualized services are a fundamental element of the cloud, Andrew says. Another is that virtual servers are familiar to enterprise IT. And that "takes the video conferencing solution out of being a standalone silo and moves it into the corporate mainstream -- just another app running in the IT data center."

Trend No. 3: Rise of Video Conferencing as a Service, or VCaaS
This trend, of course, is closely related to No. 2, with the ability to support video conferencing from virtualized cloud infrastructure propelling the market. Look and you'll probably find 100 different VCaaS providers today -- and they're getting traction as more and more people are looking for cloud solutions, Andrew says.

Trend No. 4: Delivery of Endpoints Everywhere
Today you can find a video endpoint solution for just about anything, from traditional room systems to apps that run on desktop machines, tablets, and mobile phones. "That changes the economics -- I don't really have to buy anything if I've already got an iPad. It changes the ease of use, and it changes ubiquity. I can do a video conference from anywhere at anytime," Andrew says.

Trend No. 5: The Rethinking of Licensing Models
Enabled by software and cloud delivery, video solutions providers are crafting new licensing models that allow an enterprise to buy video conferencing on a per-user, per- month basis and to scale up and down with ease. In other words, they eliminate a lot of the risk associated with buying traditional, quantized video conferencing infrastructure based on unknown usage patterns, Andrew says. "These new licensing models give them the flexibility -- a welcome change from the past."

Are you ready to shed any reservations you might have about video conferencing and collaboration? Join Andrew at Enterprise Connect 2016, coming March 7 to 10 in Orlando, Fla., as he leads the Video track and check out the bevy of video solutions providers in the Exhibition Hall.

In fact, we have a deal for you. Register here by Friday, Feb. 12, using the code NJPOST and save an additional $200 off the early bird rate. This discount code, which is valid for Entire Event and Tue-Thu Conference passes, represents a total savings of $700 off the onsite price. As an added bonus, you can get even bigger savings when you register three or more attendees from your company.

I'd love to see you there.

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