With the turn of the calendar from December to January, you can count on predictions from TV reporters, newspapers and bloggers about what’s ahead in the world of finance, politics and Hollywood.
Not to be left out, our Unified Communications team compiled our own list of insights and predictions to what 2011 may bring to the world of UC.
Mobile Interactions Become More Personalized
Let’s face it: no one likes to be JUST a number. Thankfully smartphones allow us to pair faces, places and relevant information about people within our contact lists.
More information workers in 2011 will be associating a name to contact people, empowering them to identify availability on the fly and delineate the most effective mode of contact—whether it’s IM, email, direct dial or conference call right from their desktops. And these connections will be made in a faster, more accurate manner than ever before.
With the ability to identify the location of the speaker at the end of your line, like with the Polycom CX5000, ever increasing speed of cellular services and growing access to WiFi, meetings will share more emotion, attention and accountability and, according to Cisco, last longer because of the increase in productivity.
There Will Be an Increased Focus on Presence
Presence, the ability to “see and be seen” (with status updates we’re all familiar with on IM, such as available, busy, away, on the phone, out of office, etc.), will be built into more and more applications as opposed to being a separate tool.
2011 Is the Point of No Return for the Cloud
Cloud computing in the year ahead, particularly as it relates to UC, is driving toward an adoption level that will soon make it “mainstream” in nature. Just as the economy has driven organizations to explore any viable means to save costs and better utilize IT resources, the cost savings and enhanced efficiencies that cloud-based collaborative technologies afford will become too great to ignore.
Mobile Goes to the Cloud
Extension of cloud-based apps to mobile phones will become a greater factor and more prevalent in 2011. Moving beyond just getting emails on your phone, the prevalent adoption of smartphones will spur more enterprise application developments designed to improve and speed-up everyday business practices.
Cloud Services Will Flourish within Remote Countries and Employees
As the price of the microprocessor falls, access to more intelligent software in the cloud and more powerful hardware will become available. This brings opportunity to share information, technology and data faster across a wider array of users.
Tablet PCs Will be Used for Video Conferencing
Have you seen the part in the movie “Demolition Man” where the metal bodies with tablet PC faces are conducting a meeting? Granted, we’re not going to be having meetings quite like that in 2011, but technology is constantly becoming more engrained in our day-to-day lives. With the trend toward tablet-based computing heating up, more and more video conferences will be held on tablet PCs.
Video to Become the Key Driver of UC Implementations
Today, many room-based video systems are collecting dust between uses, instead of being integrated into the more collaborative and efficient, minute-to-minute business operation of the desktop environment. As video capability expands, with vendors such as Cisco/Tandberg, Microsoft and Polycom leading the way, these environments will become more seamless in both operation and management, closing a key gap in the UC space that will make its strategic value even greater than it is today.
So what do you think 2011 will bring for Unified Communications? Share your ideas and let us know what you think about our team’s predictions!