Polycom has introduced CloudAXIS, an extension of the RealPresence Platform designed to enable users to extend enterprise-grade their video collaboration solutions to communicate with colleagues on Skype, Facebook, Google Talk, and other business video apps just through a desktop browser.
Essentially, RealPresence CloudAXIS brings contacts from the user's video presence-based apps into a global directory. From there, participants' contact files can be dragged and dropped into a Polycom video collaboration session so that anyone inside or outside of the organization can securely join the conference from a browser window without having to install additional software.
Furthermore, there aren't any extra usernames or conference ID numbers required for entering the online conference, which is typically the standard practice right now.
The platform supports HD video and audio quality through a redesigned RealPresence user interface with what Polycom asserts is the industry's first implementation of open standards-based scalable video coding.
Described by Polycom as an "industry first" as well as the communications giant's biggest launch in company history, CloudAXIS runs on standard x86 servers and can be deployed via either public or private clouds with a variety of customer types in mind for business-to-business (B2B) or business-to-consumer (B2C) purposes.
The debut of CloudAXIS also represents another step for Polycom towards becoming a more of a software solutions provider than a communications specialist.
For example, with telecommunications partners, Polycom boasts that this would enable providers to expand their cloud-based solutions portfolios to include Video Collaboration-as-a-Service thanks to the addition of apps supporting Web conferencing as well as digital whiteboards and other collaboration tools.
To also make this easier on smaller to mid-market businesses, Polycom asserts there are few IT management and support requirements.
Polycom argues that this release will accelerate the mass adoption of video collaboration with the potential to connect hundreds of millions -- if not billions -- of enterprise employees worldwide.
To emphasize how much potential there is for online video collaboration, the San Jose-based company revealed that it expects this market to grow to nearly $12 billion in 2015, at a 16 percent compounded annual growth rate.