Michelle Burbick
Michelle Burbick is the Associate Editor and a blogger for No Jitter, UBM Tech's online community for news and analysis...
Read Full Bio >>

Michelle Burbick | December 09, 2016 |


No Jitter Roll: This Week in Enterprise Communications

No Jitter Roll: This Week in Enterprise Communications Today's collection of what's hot and happening includes bites of news from Microsoft, RingCentral, Lifesize, BlueJeans, BroadSoft, and ReadyTalk.

Today's collection of what's hot and happening includes bites of news from Microsoft, RingCentral, Lifesize, BlueJeans, BroadSoft, and ReadyTalk.

Whew! It certainly has been a busy week in the enterprise communications world. While you might expect things to be winding down with the holiday season upon us, that's hardly the reality.

Team collaboration took center stage in the news this week, as well as at the TechCrunch Disrupt event taking place in London. There a Facebook keynoter announced the company would be evolving its Workplace team collaboration app into a full platform that supports integration. Meantime, competitor Slack shared integration news of its own, announcing that it's partnering with Google to offer integrations to their mutual customers (see "Team Collaboration Battle Intensifies over App Integration").

But team collaboration certainly wasn't the only enterprise communications-related topic in the news this week. So with that, take a few minutes to catch up on some of the other happenings worth knowing.

Microsoft's LinkedIn Acquisition Nears Close

Microsoft announced its intent to acquire the dominant social network for business professionals, LinkedIn, this past June, for the hefty sum of $26.2 billion, causing many a UC watcher to examine the potential promise and implications of the merger, as No Jitter Editor Beth Schultz wrote at the time. Since then, due to antitrust concerns about the acquisition, Microsoft has been busy undergoing approval processes to close the deal, gaining approvals in the U.S., Brazil, Canada, and South Africa. This week, Microsoft gained approval from the European Union, and as Brad Smith, president and chief legal officer, wrote in a corporate blog on the decision:

"With this regulatory process behind us, we can [now] bring together two great companies and focus on even broader issues for the future."

The EU cleared the deal on the condition that Microsoft provides other professional networking sites with access to programming commands for its Office apps and cloud-computing services for a period of five years. Microsoft must also allow computer manufacturers the choice to not install the LinkedIn shortcut on desktops, as well as grant rival networks access to Microsoft Graph, as reported by The Wall Street Journal .


RingCentral Touts Cloud Growth

RingCentral announced this week that its cloud communications service, RingCentral Global Office, is now available in 30 countries and in use at nearly 400 enterprises. This more than doubles the number of customers it had in the first half of the year.

As we covered on No Jitter back in June, RingCentral spent a good amount of effort this year expanding the reach of Global Office, pushing from 12 countries at launch in February to 24 countries in July. New customers that signed on for Global Office in the second half of the year include SugarCRM, Medallia, and Motion Recruitment Partners, RingCentral said.

Strides to Simplify Video Conferencing

This week we saw numerous announcements hit the wires that revolve around vendor efforts to improve and simplify video conferencing. Read on for a break-down of the news from Lifesize, BlueJeans, BroadSoft, and ReadyTalk:

  • Lifesize Enhances Skype for Business Interoperability -- Millions of professionals around the world use Microsoft Office 365 and Skype for Business to communicate and collaborate at work. But even so, integration between video conferencing solutions and Skype for Business continues to be limited. Lifesize is taking steps toward seamless integration, this week announcing that it has enhanced its interoperability capabilities to support bi-directional calling and screen sharing between Skype for Business and the Lifesize cloud-based application. The improvements are aimed at not only simplifying cross-platform conferencing, but also making it easier to pair Skype for Business with Lifesize's HD camera and phone systems in conference rooms, Lifesize said.

    "Skype for Business and other such applications allow organizations to standardize collaboration workflows," said Lifesize CEO Craig Malloy, in a prepared statement. "For users in those organizations, the best conferencing solution should complement the way they work, not hinder it."

    Through interoperability between the company's solutions, Skype for Business, and third-party vendors, Lifesize is hoping to provide that complementary experience. You can view a short video showcasing the Lifesize and Skype for Business integration here.

  • BlueJeans Introduces Huddle -- Cloud-based video communication services provider BlueJeans Network revealed BlueJeans Huddle, aimed at making it easier to initiate on-the-fly video meetings. The Huddle system combines standard hardware and BlueJeans proprietary software that lets users turn any room into an interactive meeting space at a lower cost compared with legacy in-room systems, BlueJeans said.

    BlueJeans Huddle is geared toward eliminating the video meetings adoption hurdles with which businesses continue to struggle. Take the statistic in the press release, for example, that an average of eight to 15 minutes of every video meeting is wasted with set-up and getting participants connected. To combat this waste, Huddle automatically recognizes users, who can start video meetings simply by walking into meeting rooms outfitted with the software. The new solution is powered by the BlueJeans Enterprise Video Cloud, which supports the same user experience across desktops, mobile, and video-enabled meeting rooms.

    "Huddle was designed from the ground up to remove all obstacles to live video adoption while adding features that help facilitate productivity," said BlueJeans Network CEO Krish Ramakrishnan, in a prepared statement. "The result is a system that essentially gives every employee his or her own personal assistant for each meeting and takes away the video tax."

  • BroadSoft Announces One-Click Conferencing -- BroadSoft has made a lot of headlines as of late (see recent coverage, "The Big Reveal: Powered by BroadSoft " and "BroadSoft Plots a New Path to Mobile UC "). In a November No Jitter Roll edition, we covered the introduction of BroadSoft Business, which is made up of UC-One, Team-One, and CC-One applications. This week, BroadSoft announced a new solution falling under UC-One, the UC-One Conference Room, a one-click conference room system enabling enterprises to connect existing conference rooms to a UC-One virtual conference.

    UC-One Conference Room works with any standard LCD screen in any conference room and the solution also includes a wideband audio and HD video conference cam, Logitech Group. This approach makes the solution 1/10 the cost of comparable telepresence systems, BroadSoft said.

    "Now conferences can be started with the click of a button from our UC-One desktop and mobile apps, and service providers are now positioned to offer businesses of all sizes a multi-point solution that can be affordably and easily added to any conference room as needed," said BroadSoft CTO Scott Hoffpauir, in a prepared statement.

    In other news, cloud communications solutions provider ReadyTalk, already known well for its Web, audio, and video conferencing solutions, this week unveiled its ReadyTalk Hosted Voice UC suite. The new UC offering just so happens to be powered by BroadSoft. Check back with No Jitter next week for more on ReadyTalk's latest move.

Getting the Cloud Transition Right

While the purpose of the No Jitter Roll is to catch you up on the news you may have missed from the week, I'd like to do my part in getting you ahead for next week. As the recent No Jitter Research: 2016 Cloud Communications Survey shows, cloud communications is on the rise. If your organization is preparing for or making a transition to cloud UC, management along the journey is one of the key factors of a successful implementation.

On Wednesday, Dec. 14, at 2:00 p.m. ET, we'll be hosting a webinar, sponsored by IR, that's perfect for any enterprise looking for practical ways to get the migration right. You'll hear from cloud UC analyst Zeus Kerravala and IR's global head of product marketing, Skip Chilcott, who will help you determine how to plan and deploy a migration; operate, troubleshoot problems, and optimize performance; and maximize usage and adoption through a focus on an optimal user experience. Register now and don't miss this opportunity to stay ahead of the game!

Follow Michelle Burbick and No Jitter on Twitter!


October 24, 2018

With disparate workplaces and ever-expanding volumes of information to manage, the challenges for collaborating effectively are only intensifying. Many critical applications are not integrated, and

October 10, 2018

Businesses are growing across international borders quicker than ever, but scaling operations to follow suit can be a harder, longer process.

This webinar focuses on scaling your next-generat

September 26, 2018

Join Kevin Kieller, Microsoft UC&C expert, along with Ribbon Communications and Polycom, for an update on Microsoft Ignite, and a focus on critical things you need to know about your voice deployme

March 12, 2018
An effective E-911 implementation doesn't just happen; it takes a solid strategy. Tune in for tips from IT expert Irwin Lazar, of Nemertes Research.
March 9, 2018
IT consultant Steve Leaden lays out the whys and how-tos of getting the green light for your convergence strategy.
March 7, 2018
In advance of his speech tech tutorial at EC18, communications analyst Jon Arnold explores what voice means in a post-PBX world.
February 28, 2018
Voice engagement isn't about a simple phone call any longer, but rather a conversational experience that crosses from one channel to the next, as Daniel Hong, a VP and research director with Forrester....
February 16, 2018
What trends and technologies should you be up on for your contact center? Sheila McGee-Smith, Contact Center & Customer Experience track chair for Enterprise Connect 2018, gives us the lowdown.
February 9, 2018
Melanie Turek, VP of connected work research at Frost & Sullivan, walks us through key components -- and sticking points -- of customer-oriented digital transformation projects.
February 2, 2018
UC consultant Marty Parker has crunched lots of numbers evaluating UC options; tune in for what he's learned and tips for your own analysis.
January 26, 2018
Don't miss out on the fun! Organizer Alan Quayle shares details of his pre-Enterprise Connect hackathon, TADHack-mini '18, showcasing programmable communications.
December 20, 2017
Kevin Kieller, partner with enableUC, provides advice on how to move forward with your Skype for Business and Teams deployments.
December 20, 2017
Zeus Kerravala, principal analyst with ZK Research, shares his perspective on artificial intelligence and the future of team collaboration.
December 20, 2017
Delanda Coleman, Microsoft senior marketing manager, explains the Teams vision and shares use case examples.
November 30, 2017
With a ruling on the FCC's proposed order to dismantle the Open Internet Order expected this month, communications technology attorney Martha Buyer walks us through what's at stake.
October 23, 2017
Wondering which Office 365 collaboration tool to use when? Get quick pointers from CBT Nuggets instructor Simona Millham.
September 22, 2017
In this podcast, we explore the future of work with Robert Brown, AVP of the Cognizant Center for the Future of Work, who helps us answer the question, "What do we do when machines do everything?"
September 8, 2017
Greg Collins, a technology analyst and strategist with Exact Ventures, delivers a status report on 5G implementation plans and tells enterprises why they shouldn't wait to move ahead on potential use ....
August 25, 2017
Find out what business considerations are driving the SIP trunking market today, and learn a bit about how satisfied enterprises are with their providers. We talk with John Malone, president of The Ea....
August 16, 2017
World Vision U.S. is finding lots of goodness in RingCentral's cloud communications service, but as Randy Boyd, infrastructure architect at the global humanitarian nonprofit, tells us, he and his team....
August 11, 2017
Alicia Gee, director of unified communications at Sutter Physician Services, oversees the technical team supporting a 1,000-agent contact center running on Genesys PureConnect. She catches us up on th....
August 4, 2017
Andrew Prokop, communications evangelist with Arrow Systems Integration, has lately been working on integrating enterprise communications into Internet of Things ecosystems. He shares examples and off....
July 27, 2017
Industry watcher Elka Popova, a Frost & Sullivan program director, shares her perspective on this acquisition, discussing Mitel's market positioning, why the move makes sense, and more.
July 14, 2017
Lantre Barr, founder and CEO of Blacc Spot Media, urges any enterprise that's been on the fence about integrating real-time communications into business workflows to jump off and get started. Tune and....
June 28, 2017
Communications expert Tsahi Levent-Levi, author of the popular blog, keeps a running tally and comprehensive overview of communications platform-as-a-service offerings in his "Choosing a W....
June 9, 2017
If you think telecom expense management applies to nothing more than business phone lines, think again. Hyoun Park, founder and principal investigator with technology advisory Amalgam Insights, tells ....
June 2, 2017
Enterprises strategizing on mobility today, including for internal collaboration, don't have the luxury of learning as they go. Tony Rizzo, enterprise mobility specialist with Blue Hill Research, expl....
May 24, 2017
Mark Winther, head of IDC's global telecom consulting practice, gives us his take on how CPaaS providers evolve beyond the basic building blocks and address maturing enterprise needs.
May 18, 2017
Diane Myers, senior research director at IHS Markit, walks us through her 2017 UC-as-a-service report... and shares what might be to come in 2018.
April 28, 2017
Change isn't easy, but it is necessary. Tune in for advice and perspective from Zeus Kerravala, co-author of a "Digital Transformation for Dummies" special edition.
April 20, 2017
Robin Gareiss, president of Nemertes Research, shares insight gleaned from the firm's 12th annual UCC Total Cost of Operations study.
March 23, 2017
Tim Banting, of Current Analysis, gives us a peek into what the next three years will bring in advance of his Enterprise Connect session exploring the question: Will there be a new model for enterpris....
March 15, 2017
Andrew Prokop, communications evangelist with Arrow Systems Integration, discusses the evolving role of the all-important session border controller.
March 9, 2017
Organizer Alan Quayle gives us the lowdown on programmable communications and all you need to know about participating in this pre-Enterprise Connect hackathon.
March 3, 2017
From protecting against new vulnerabilities to keeping security assessments up to date, security consultant Mark Collier shares tips on how best to protect your UC systems.
February 24, 2017
UC analyst Blair Pleasant sorts through the myriad cloud architectural models underlying UCaaS and CCaaS offerings, and explains why knowing the differences matter.
February 17, 2017
From the most basics of basics to the hidden gotchas, UC consultant Melissa Swartz helps demystify the complex world of SIP trunking.
February 7, 2017
UC&C consultant Kevin Kieller, a partner at enableUC, shares pointers for making the right architectural choices for your Skype for Business deployment.
February 1, 2017
Elka Popova, a Frost & Sullivan program director, shares a status report on the UCaaS market today and offers her perspective on what large enterprises need before committing to UC in the cloud.
January 26, 2017
Andrew Davis, co-founder of Wainhouse Research and chair of the Video track at Enterprise Connect 2017, sorts through the myriad cloud video service options and shares how to tell if your choice is en....
January 23, 2017
Sheila McGee-Smith, Contact Center/Customer Experience track chair for Enterprise Connect 2017, tells us what we need to know about the role cloud software is playing in contact centers today.