Unified communications (UC) distributer Weston recently teamed up with vendor Polycom in order to run what Weston describe as "the first European channel event to use video conferencing to a mass audience receiving the broadcast in seven locations.”
The virtual seminar was co-hosted by Weston VPs Keith Carter and the convergence department’s David Grant, at the event UC Vision, Video Collaboration without Boundaries , and they were joined by executives from Polycom.
The seminar was broadcast to seven locations from Polycom’s Executive Experience Centre in London and attended by both existing and prospective channel partners. The event was designed to educate on trends in collaboration and the unified communications solutions that Polycom can offer.
Video conferencing is a rapidly growing area that can represent a huge opportunity for resellers, according to Canalys analyst Phillip Pexton. He added that it was good to see a vendor "showing the story” rather than telling it for a change.
He went on to say that although Microsoft Lync is disrupting the market at the moment, video conferencing is expected to experience growth of 34% in the next five years. According to Pexton, Lync’s strong market performance means that "traditional IP PBX players are particularly threatened.”
Polycom’s Microsoft Lync phone shipments gave it a huge 60% of the market and whilst this can be seen as a "strategic alliance”, the vendor needed to find a way to "tell the story to the channel”.
"As unified communications solutions become more complexwith the move from hardware to software, increase in multivendor solutions, and ever-evolving ecosystems,” said Pexton, "the need for simplicity in doing business, deployment, support and processes has never been more important. Bringing it all together and simplifying business and processes – this is where the real value lies.”
Regional break-out sessions were also held in order to give in-depth demonstrations to channel partners in order to learn more about Microsoft Lync and Polycom’s RealPresenceand CloudAxis Suite.
"We’ve talked about video conferencing taking off for so long now that it’s refreshing to see progress. Historically, video conferencing has been difficult to use and has presented issues with affordability and complexity in deploying the solutions. With the consumerisation of IT and the need for access anywhere – coupled with Polycom and Microsoft’s vision – we can embrace this compelling video proposition,” said Lyn Driscoll, account director at Polycom partner Britannic Technologies.