Articles by Carl Weinschenk 

Market Update: Polycom Teams with IBM Lotus Sametime

Companies in the news this week include Acme Packet.  Glowpoint , Polycom, IBM Lotus Sametime, BroadSoft , Texas Instruments, Microsoft, Aastra, Mitel, Telstra, U.S. Department of Justice, VBrick, Benbria , Orange Business Services – Trading Solutions, GENBAND and Avnet Technology Solutions.

Podcast: ShoreTel Acquires Agito

Last week, ShoreTel announced the acquisition of mobility-focused Agito Networks. Kevin Gavin, ShoreTel's Vice President of Marketing, tells Site Editor Carl Weinschenk that a key requirement -- managing IP PBXes in mixed environments -- was one driver of the deal.

Unified Communications Security Is Different

Keeping a UC network safe is an even more important task than protecting discrete networks and applications. A crisis on the voice network may, for instance, interrupt voice communications. But if the unified communications network crashes, the organization may have no way to communicate at all.

Market Update: ShoreTel Acquires Agito

Companies in the news this week include Telmar Network Technology, Tango Networks, NEC, Black Box, Broadvox, Cypress Communications, Alliant Technologies, Cisco, Damaka, Google, Yahoo, MSN, ICQ , AIM, Datapoint, Corebridge, Sipera Systems, Esnatech VMware, Strategic Products and Services, Nortel and Avaya.

Hosted Unified Communications Catching On

Though the precise definitions -- such as the differences between hosted and cloud-based services, if there are any -- aren't set, there is growing acceptance that SMBs are well advised to let the experts handle the tricky business of UC. That acceptance is leading to action in the marketplace.

Podcast: The LifeSize 2200 Takes an Incremental Approach

Not all organizations know precisely how far or how quickly they are going with videoconferencing. Logitech division LifeSize understands this, and has introduced the LifeSize 2200, a conference bridge that can be expanded as needs grow.

Market Update: Survey Sees High Adoption of Microsoft Lync

Companies in the news this week include Azaleos, Osterman Research, Microsoft, Aptec, Network Equipment Technologies, RADVISION Open-Xchange, eZuce, 8x8, Polycom, Empirix, Avaya Professional Services, Patton, 3CX FaxBack, Zingaya, Twitter, BrightCom, WebConference.com and Glowpoint. 

One Way or Another, Mobile Unified Communications Will Grow

Video is an increasingly important element of the mobile communications experience. Organizations must recognize that folks in the field will use their smartphones for video-based collaborative communications, and take steps to track and control those sessions.

BT Pushing Interoperability

Unified communications won't thrive unless systems from different vendors can work together in harmony. The Unified Communications Interoperability Forum is the focal point of these efforts. There is no reason that other entities -- such as BT -- can't help further the agenda.

Market Update: Vidyo Joins UCIF

Other companies in the news this week include: Avistar, Mitel, Google, Android, Esna Technologies, Cisco, Avaya, Mitel, Nortel, Iwatsu, AASTRA, Toshiba, eON, ShoreTel, Asterisk, Vidyo. Windstream, Avaya, AVST, Damaka, iPhone, iPad, BlackBerry, Symbian, Windows Mobile, Smoothstone, 8x8 and ClearOne.

Good and Bad News from The Diffusion Group

A study by the firm suggests that routers and gateways are moving from the home office to the den or living room. Most obviously, that's a negative for home office UC. But there is a positive angle as well: The reason the devices are moving is to facilitate services that will whet users' appetite for home office unified communications.

The Inherently Confusing World of Unified Communications

UC is an increasingly vital tool for some companies. But for others, it continues to cause confusion. This is is inevitable, simply because unified communications is inherently complex and solutions vary greatly between organizations. This flexibility makes UC a great tool – and a hard sell.

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