The real time collaboration (RTC) world including video conferencing, communication and collaboration services has some strong contenders snapping at the heels of Lync. These offer HD video and collaboration across cloud, web and mobile platforms.
A McKinsey study predicted that companies that effectively use visual collaboration are seeing an increase in productivity.
That represents $1.5 trillion increase to the US economy which is raising the productivity of workers by 20 to 25 percent.
But which provider should you choose for your organisation? Here are three contenders that have recently caught my eye.
Blue Jeans Network offers cloud based HD Video Conferencing and a service where customers can connect with each other from practically any device. Blue Jeans Network recently secured $50m in funding.
Earlier this year it released its State of the Modern Meeting report showing that people join meetings for a multitude of devices with 30 percent joining from mobile devices.
The report shows that 61 percent of meetings happen on Wednesdays and Thursdays and almost 50 percent of meetings happen between 10am and 2pm.
Blue Jeans and Intercall Reservationless-Plus have recently announced an offering. Up to 175 people can participate in a single conference using TelePresence, video room systems (H.323), SIP, Skype, Google, Lync, browsers, tablets, Android, iOS and audio callers.
Applied Global Technologies (AGT) – providers of managed and turnkey cloud video conferencing solutions offers a Video-as-a-Service platform. Encore B2B includes a desktop video client and a design overhaul.
The solution is is accessible on Windows, iOS and Android platforms. All of its video as a service options are available for service providers to white-label and resell.
Users can use email and URI dialling to join meetings by entering an email address or by directory lookup. AGT also offers a secure firewall traversal technique in Encore B2B for laptops and mobile devices.
Mobile Pathway Protocol uses already open and safe firewall ports for video both inside and outside of the organization.
Fuzebox, has announced a partnership with Internet2, a community for higher education institutions. Together the companies are bringing collaboration services to all non-profit universities, schools and research organisations across the US. Internet2 members can begin using Fuzebox for free.
FuzeBox connects traditional video conferencing and telepresence systems from Cisco, Polycom, Tandberg, LifeSize, Radvision and others in video calls. It is accessible via a web browser or through client apps on Windows, Mac and Linux, iOS and Android tablets and phones.
It recently received an infusion of $26M and brought in leaders from Google, Microsoft, Skype, Salesforce.com and Yammer. Saint Louis University uses Fuzebox to deliver its distance learning, online classes, training, lectures and adult education to almost 20,000 learners and staff.
As education moves towards a dynamic distributed learning environment, colleges struggle to meet the needs of their remote students. Offering programs using real time collaboration to connect students and staff brings collaboration to the global learning market.
There is a huge opportunity for effective solution providers in this market. The real-time collaboration market is a $35B opportunity up for grabs to the right provider offering a flexible cloud solution that can be used across platform, mobile devices and smartphones.
With offerings appearing across the market at a range of freemium or pay as you go pricing – choosing the right provider that will give you the feature you want for your business – might take some time.