I’m exhausted. The good kind of exhausted though, like when you finish a difficult task or a Netflix binge. It was an exciting week at TEAM Polycom in Nashville working with Polycom and partners to figure out how to better help customers get the most out of video collaboration technology. I feel like I absorbed an amazing amount of information, and although I couldn’t be everywhere at once, I am back to give you my key takeaways from this awesome event.
We Want to Sell Solutions
Customers have problems that they need to collaborate their way out of. Polycom and its partners want to help customers solve these problems. To this end, Polycom has created impressive endpoints and infrastructure in cloud, virtual, and hardware forms. They have also made a tremendous effort to enable partners to support and manage these collaboration technologies for customers.
But, you don’t usually hear much about the specs and technical details of these technologies (or “feeds and speeds”) from Polycom. This is because Polycom is focused on solving these collaboration problems, no matter what technology it takes, which aligns 100% with the way Vyopta views the market. It was great to see a technology vendor think about the end user and how collaboration helps people in the same way we do.
The Best UI is No UI
Over the past 20 years we have evolved from a command prompt User Interface (UI), through a steady progression of sleeker and simpler graphic UIs, and a new age of no UI at all. For collaboration endpoints, this means voice command, gesture control, or integration with smartphones through bluetooth or NFC. There are some exciting announcements you can expect from Polycom in the near future to help make video and audio conferencing easier and more intuitive.
The Opportunity is Tremendous
The volume of the opportunity for collaboration is exciting for so many reasons. First, it means that the product work we do to make new features and technologies has an ability to scale and impact the world in a very meaningful way. It is exciting for me to think that Vyopta could someday impact billions of users in over 50 million huddle rooms and 10 million traditional conferencing rooms around the world. Of course, the opportunity is also amazing because of the potential to grow our business and reach more companies.
Integration, not Interoperability
For the most part, workflows create technology needs, and not the other way around. However, most technology companies of the past century have tended to design products to create new workflows based around them. The idea to flip this has come in the last decade from companies that focus on consumer software products like Uber, AirBnB, Evernote, and more. It’s about time that B2B technology companies caught on to this trend. I can’t wait until joining a meeting via a telepresence room is just as easy as clicking to join from my desktop or phone. The age of entering PIN or Conference codes will hopefully come to an abrupt end in 2016. I cannot wait.
(above) Ira Weinstein on the importance of scaling and monitoring huddle rooms
In the end, I want to thank Polycom for inviting me to such a great event. I liked the message and the execution, but my favorite thing was that the roadmap commitments matched the marketing and the vision for Polycom. This is extremely important and a reflection of a company on the right track.