Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego

by Dave Michels

I made a rookie move when I was recently asked if I can host a meeting. I checked my calendar, and upon seeing that I would be traveling I explained I could not. I was told to host it anyway:  Travel is not a valid excuse.

Even though ‘work is not a place’ is cliché, habits can be hard to break.

At first new tools adapt to our existing work styles, but eventually our processes and tools evolve. I remember greeting the PC as a replacement for the typewriter. It would actually save paper because typos can be corrected before printing. Oops. 

Paradigm shifts can be hard to spot because we regularly put old ecosystems into new form factors. This is why then CEO of Microsoft Steve Ballmer called the first Apple iPad a PC, not realizing that tablets with their touch-screens and their efficient OS offered a very different approach.

The UC industry has been greeting the smartphone quite literally as an extension. We have forced them into the old ecosystem with docking stations, simultaneous ring, and findMe/FollowMe call forwarding. But the smartphone has ushered-in a mobile-first paradigm shift.

Gartner recently estimated the global PC market to be around 306 million units this year, a 2.4 percent drop from 2014. Meanwhile, mobile phone shipments are expected to increase to 1.943 billion units this year, up 3.5% from last year. That’s billions vs. millions. The pace isn’t expected to slow either. Gartner forecasts sales to be over 2 billion units in 2017.

I don’t know or care where Carmen Sandiego is. But I do expect her to complete those TPS reports for Monday morning.

This year in the Innovation Showcase (at Enterprise Connect in March) we are looking for solutions that foster, facilitate, and enable the mobile enterprise. Ideally, we are seeking a mobile-first, new approach to solving old (communications) problems. 

We never really know what to expect in the Innovation Showcase (maybe even the Spanish Inquisition). Companies and ideas apply for consideration and we evaluate them against a filter of innovation and (this year) mobility.

It’s a privilege to host the Innovation Showcase each year at Enterprise Connect. The showcase evolves a bit each year. Initially it was was limited to startups, but we’ve expanded it to any size organization that’s new to Enterprise Connect (which typically means its new to enterprise communications). Our goal is to introduce emerging communications/mobility approaches to an enterprise audience.

There’s lots of reasons for companies to apply for Showcase consideration. Most importantly it’s excellent exposure to potential enterprise customers. Enterprise Connect mostly attracts attendees from organizations with 1000+ employees. Showcase participants get show passes, booth space, a slot to present, and most importantly a room at the sold-out hotel/venue.

Related Links: