No Jitter Roll: This Week in Enterprise Communications
Today's collection of what's hot and happening includes tidbits on Google enterprise security, partnerships benefiting developers, automated testing tools, and more acquisitions.
We're continuing our mission to bring No Jitter readers weekly updates on news you may have missed in our world of enterprise communications technology. If you're behind, you can catch up on last week's No Jitter Roll here, which covers Polycom's new CEO, WebRTC funding, and more. Go further back in time and read our inaugural No Jitter Roll, which focuses on news related to SD-WAN and interoperability. And now, let's dive into what's current, hot, and happening.Google Gives Enterprise Security an Upgrade
As announced yesterday in a Google for Work Official Blog post, Google is ramping up enterprise security by rolling out Verified Access for Chrome OS devices. Verified Access is the means by which a network service such as a VPN gateway, enterprise certificate authority, or enterprise Wi-Fi access point can get a "hardware-backed cryptographic guarantee" of the device identity and associated user trying to gain access to it, explained Saswat Panigrahi, senior product manager, Chrome for Work.
"This matters because most businesses, particularly large enterprise, have policies and requirements in place that allow network and data access only to enterprise-managed and verified devices, but many of the current solutions rely primarily on heuristic client side checks," Panigrahi wrote.
Google has used Verified Access internally for years, and is now making it available externally, he added. In the post, he also pointed out that two companies have already integrated with Google's Verified Access API. They are security management platform provider Ruckus Wireless and access provider Duo Security.Sinch, Voxbone Partner for Developers
Developers are becoming a bigger part of enterprises everywhere, and a partnership between cloud-based mobile communications platform Sinch and DID numbers provider Voxbone aims to help them "take over the world," as the companies said in a joint press release. Developers using the Sinch platform can now use Voxbone APIs for on-demand provisioning of local phone numbers in nearly 60 countries and 9,000 cities.Masergy Makes SD-WAN Moves
If you've been reading No Jitter lately, you've likely seen SD-WAN come up quite frequently. UC analyst and regular No Jitter contributor Zeus Kerravala recently explored the topic in "Is SD-WAN Right for You?" and network engineer and regular No Jitter contributor Terry Slattery wrote about how SD-WAN can be the first step on an enterprise's path to software-defined networking. It's certainly a hot area in communications, as No Jitter editor Beth Schultz made clear in her news round-up a few weeks back. Today, there is another name to add to your list of SD-WAN developments coming out of companies working in this space: managed services provider Masergy.
Masergy announced a managed SD-WAN solution, which supports premise, cloud and virtualized deployments by enabling enterprises to use any combination of high-performance private WAN connections and broadband. The Managed SD-WAN solution was built with performance and data resiliency in mind, featuring dynamic policy-based application routing and centralized policy and configuration management. As the release states, Masergy is seeing demand for agile hybrid networks rise, attributing this largely to the adoption of public cloud services and SaaS applications. Cited in the release is market research from IDC that projects SD-WAN revenues to reach more than $6 billion by 2020.
"Today's dynamic information technology environment requires enterprises to be more agile as they expand operations, introduce new applications and migrate to public clouds -- all while continuously optimizing costs," Masergy CTO Tim Naramore said in the release. "These factors are driving the need for more intelligent use of broadband Internet connectivity in global hybrid network architectures."tekVizion Streamlines Communications Endpoints Testing
Earlier this week, interoperability expert tekVizion announced its new onPOINT service for automated testing of communications endpoints across an enterprise. The service is aimed at helping businesses more quickly identify problems remotely by checking the status of both hard phones and soft phones. The service will eventually cover smartphones and other intelligent devices that make up typical Internet of Things solutions, tekVizion said.
"In today's dynamic technology environment, businesses need to dynamically test solutions to optimize quality," said tekVizion CEO Chakra DeValla in the release. "That requires automation. onPOINT is about streamlining the basic testing of device status, a task that is both time-consuming and tedious if done manually."Intermedia Changes Hands
Private equity firm Madison Dearborn Partners (MDP) has announced it is acquiring Intermedia, a cloud business applications provider, from Oak Hill Capital Partners. New investment from MDP will go toward accelerating growth in Intermedia's channel partner programs, new and existing products, vertical industry solutions, as well as future acquisitions, the company said.
According to Intermedia executives, the company has 75,000 customers, 6,000 partners, and 700 global employees, recently reaching annual revenue of more than $200 million.
"Intermedia is successfully capitalizing upon the global shift to the cloud, and possesses tremendous upside potential to capture further opportunities with its reach, scalability, customer support offerings and enhanced product functionality," said Zaid Alsikafi, a managing director at MDP, said in a formal statement.Chatting with Brands
On a technically lighter note, cloud communications platform company Twilio released the results of its Global Messaging Consumer Report, which found that nine out of 10 consumers want to be able to communicate with brands via messaging. Twilio surveyed more than 6,000 consumers in North America, Europe, and Asia, for this report, noting in its findings that while this demand for messaging exists, "less than half of global businesses have the infrastructure in place to fulfill this demand."
The report had several other notable findings, including that the average consumer has three messaging apps on his or her phone's home screen and uses three different messaging apps weekly. Consumers also indicated that they prefer messaging three times more than face-to-face communications, with the texting-loving Millennials preferring it eight times more than talking face to face.
As a Millennial myself, I have to admit that my preferences align with those surveyed. However, I wouldn't go as far as agreeing with the three out of 10 people surveyed who indicated they would give up phone calls altogether in favor of messaging. Who among us hasn't cursed our phone after receiving message after message after message?