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Mobility, Collaboration and the Cloud: An ITEXPO Preview

TMCnet Feature

July 30, 2014

Mobility, Collaboration and the Cloud: An ITEXPO Preview

By Tracey E. Schelmetic
TMCnet Contributor

As the telecommunications world prepares once again to converge at ITEXPO, which will be held from August 11 to 14 at the Rio in Las Vegas, it’s worth exploring some of the many topics that will be discussed at the world’s largest telecommunications and business technology event.

In advance of the conference, TMCnet took some time to speak with Mark N. Ricca, Partner and Senior Analyst at market research and consulting firm IntelliCom Analytics. Ricca, who will be participating at ITEXPO (News - Alert), spoke to a wide range of telecommunications technologies and how they are currently affecting the business landscape today.

At the ITEXPO, Ricca will be moderating a panel discussion: “Leading Change: Taking Your Business and Technology into the Next Generation.” 

The cloud will continue to be one of the most discussed technology concepts at the event, as it continues to transform the way companies do business.

While many companies are choosing cloud-based enterprise solutions for reasons of cost, initially, they are finding a whole host of additional benefits to the idea of replacing premises-based functions with solutions delivered over the Internet or private networks. According to Ricca, certain perceived drawbacks of the cloud will be solved by solutions providers.

“Understandably, security, compliance and disengagement are concerns for some companies,” he said.   “However, these areas will be improved by cloud providers over time.”

Ricca notes that IntelliCom itself has embraced the technology, moving data storage and voice communications to the cloud.  The reasons that drove these changes were lower costs and improved access to information.

One of the features of this improved access, of course, is mobility, which is also a critical factor in how businesses operate today. “Bring Your Own Device,” once big news in the business world, is now simply an accepted way of doing business, says Ricca.

“BYOD is still gaining momentum; it’s just that we don’t hear as much about it for two primary reasons,” says Ricca. “First, the ‘shock-value’ of the BYOD trend has worn-off.  Second, most IT groups have developed company-specific policies on how to deal with BYOD. The BYOD trend will continue, as younger employees enter the workforce.”

He noted that work is no longer a “place,” but rather an activity that can be performed from almost anywhere there is connectivity thanks to modern mobility programs and technology. Mobility has also improved the way that companies communicate with their customers.

“The potential to communicate almost anytime from anywhere usually contributes to improving the customer experience,” he notes. “The key is not to abuse this capability.”

Mobility as well as the cloud can lead directly to better collaboration with coworkers, sales and work teams, customers, partner organizations and more. For collaboration, there are few technologies as hot as Microsoft (News - Alert) Lync, which integrates audio and video conferencing, email, instant messaging and presence in a single interface. 

“Microsoft recognizes that in the overly complex world of technology, most users are seeking solutions that are easy to understand and simple to operate,” said Ricca. “Since Microsoft dominates the desktop, the potential concern for other UC vendors is that their solutions will be viewed as redundant and unnecessary to users.”

Edited by Stefania Viscusi

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