Bottom line – this industry is changing – the solutions, value props, and the vendors – and that’s a good thing.
I think the big themes this year were cloud, video, workstream messaging, and APIs.
Cloud and video are the big surprises. Many feel that video is more or less dead – and that’s at least partially true. I think the high-end executive only video conference room industry is mature. But today screens are everywhere and almost as common are cameras and broadband. Video is becoming personal. It’s not playing out the way many of us expected. For example, travel is still important. However, video is richer than audio and nearly free in terms of usage. Actually, in terms of transportation video is like a bicycle – faster than walking and slower than driving yet still has an important role and is in fact rising in popularity.
Check out my SelfieCam collection here.
The API story is playing out differently than expected too. The internet now offers a service model for just about everything – including comms. Twilio grasped this early, but now specialized services and solutions are appearing to comms enable apps in very specialized ways. CEBP was an early part of the UC equation, but only recently has it become mainstream. APIs are now viewed as business critical and there’s no shortage of API providers and solutions to choose from.
Cloud today is not the same as cloud before. Cloud before was hosted services. Move a server or application from a closet to a data center and that was cloud. Today’s cloud would never fit in a data center. The rage in data centers before was server consolidation. The rage in cloud is microservices. Spinning up new services at a whim makes practical what was inconceivable just a tech gen ago.
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