As the days dwindle until the ITEXPO West 2010, TMC is in constant contact with sponsors, speakers, exhibitors, and registering new ones every day. The folks from ShoreTel (News - Alert) will be there, so we got a bit of info from Kevin Gavin, vice president of marketing at the company to give us his insight on the recent developments in the telecommunications industry as well as a sneak peek at what the company will be exhibiting at the show. See the full exchange below.
TMC (News - Alert): What is the most significant trend in communications today? Why?
KG: As organizations realize the business value of aligning communications with business processes and empowering workers with technology that lets them communicate however they like, wherever and whenever they like, by far the biggest trend is the elimination of complexity in modern communication solutions. In a recent survey conducted among ShoreTel prospective customers, respondents indicated that complexity is the biggest burden to IT groups currently.
TMC: What is the one product or service the market is most in need of?
KG: Organizations poised for growth as the economy begins to recover need unified communications software applications that are intuitive and easy to use. A fully integrated user interface that lets workers effectively manage their communications from anywhere can help boost productivity and improve responsiveness, but will not be readily adopted if it is unnecessary complex and difficult to learn.
TMC: How is your company leveraging the growth of social media to enhance your own business?
KG: In addition to traditional media and other forms of outreach, ShoreTel uses social media to share information and communicate with customers, prospective customers, resellers and other third parties. Providing a wide range of communication vehicles to ensure all parties have the latest and most relevant information is critical in today’s global marketplace.
TMC: Nearly every phone manufacturer is now incorporating support for wideband codecs. Will we finally see widespread HD voice deployments in 2011?
KG: We will continue to see users expecting their voice communications to be crystal clear, superior to cellular phone calls and early VoIP solutions.
TMC: What are your thoughts on the viability of mobile video chat or conferencing?
KG: Mobile video chat and conferencing has the potential to dramatically change the way consumers communicate with business, and the way workers collaborate and exchange information. We saw an example of such a change in the past decade or so with instant messaging and e-commerce, which have transformed the way people buy products and services, and opened up a plethora of new options from innovative companies able to take advantage of these changes.
TMC: Which wireless operating system (Android, iOS4, Microsoft (News - Alert), etc.) will see the greatest success over the next three years? Why?
KG: It is very likely that all of the mentioned operating systems will be successful over the next three years because of the overwhelming increasing demand for mobile devices in general. It’s a huge market and it continues to expand.
TMC: Some have suggested wireless networking will soon replace wired networks in the enterprise. Do you agree? Why or why not?
KG: There is certainly a possibility for some businesses to have all wireless devices. We’ve already seen examples of ShoreTel customers using their laptops and desktop applications as their primary communications device. Some companies are no longer using traditional desktop phones and opting for mobile devices exclusively.
TMC: What impact has the growth of cloud-based services had on your business?
KG: We have seen an increase in the number of enterprises interested in operating their own cloud-based services. ShoreTel firmly believes that organizations should have the freedom to choose the best option for their business, and in some cases, cloud-based communications may best meet certain needs. For that reason alone, we expect cloud computing to gain in overall popularity over time.
TMC: If you had the opportunity to decide the Net neutrality (News - Alert) debate, how would you rule?
KG: We at ShoreTel believe it is important to maintain a level playing field that encourages open competition and the availability of competitive services, thereby fostering choice and openness for the enterprise.
TMC: You are exhibiting at ITEXPO (News - Alert) West 2010. What is the most exciting thing attendees will see at your booth?
KG: Attendees at ShoreTel’s booth will be able try out the ShoreTel UC system for themselves, and experience how easy it is to use, deploy and manage this all-in-one IP-based communication solution.
TMC: What is the one technology development that will have the greatest impact in 2011?
KG: As the proliferation of mobile devices continues, I predict there will be an evolution of technology assistants that will become available to help make these solutions even easier to deploy and use. With this increased focus on mobility, we will also see more services than ever on Internet-enabled devices that help keep people connected and collaborating effectively.
To find out more about ShoreTel, visit the company at ITEXPO West 2010. To be held Oct. 4 to 6 in Los Angeles, ITEXPO is the world’s premier IP communications event. Visit ShoreTel in booth 512. Don’t wait. Register now.