Biggest Video Conferencing Trends Of 2015

I have to say I’m excited and a little anxious about the feedback we’re going to receive on this latest report that we released today. We’re calling this one the 2015 Best of Video Collaboration Mini Report given that over 140 collaboration professionals from around the world shared their opinions on the top video collaboration vendors out there.

Here is my quick summary including some of the insights that we put into the report about top video collaboration technology vendors.

#1 Skype for Business is Growing

This may come as no surprise to most professionals in the collaboration space, but Skype for Business is the fastest growing collaboration tool around. For enterprise collaboration, S4B is one of the most effective tools – easy for users, easy deployment for IT and better collaboration with chat, video, voice and content sharing hands-down. These are some of the reasons why I think S4B was so popular among the participants of this survey. Usage and adoption are growing for the Microsoft tool at the enterprise level as well as small and medium sized businesses.

48% of participants in a mini survey that we conducted said that S4B is the fastest growing collaboration tool in their organization. These organizations include: Healthcare, Technology, Financial services, Consulting, Telecom services and many more.

#2 Cisco Is Still On Top

No matter how we sliced the data, by industry, number of video endpoints, or organization size, Cisco was the most popular vendor for user experience, interoperability, and best hardware video endpoints. You’ve probably heard about Cisco’s recent acquisition of Acano – a former competitor in the video collaboration space out of the UK. This was a huge step for Cisco as well as their announcement to move basically all of their collaboration products to the cloud in the coming years.

Cisco has long dominated the hardware and software video conferencing market, and now with WebEx, Spark, Telepresence and CMR’s together their making huge strides to improve interoperability and user experience in the enterprise space.

It almost comes as no surprise that in our survey Cisco was selected most often for all of the above. 70% of participants responded that their organizations had two or more technologies from different video collaboration vendors and Cisco products were often one of those technologies, especially in organizations with > 500 video collaboration endpoints.

#3 Hybrid Videoconferencing is Preferred By Many

Everything might be moving to the cloud, but many of the technology professionals indicated that they haven’t completely left on-premise behind when it comes to video conferencing. 52% of participants said they have hybrid video conferencing solutions, 34% said they have on-premise only and only 13% said they only host video conferencing on the cloud.

#4 Higher Education Is A Bit Different

Many of the participants (over 17%) come from higher education organizations. When we looked at the responses from these individuals we uncovered some interesting insights. Where Skype for Business dominated most of the survey responses for “fastest growing tool” (48%), among participants in higher education only 13% of respondents indicated that S4B was the fastest growing tool. The “Other” choice was most popular in higher ed.

We also saw a bit of a spike in participants who selected Zoom Video Conferencing. Higher Education IT professionals ranked Zoom 2nd to Cisco for user friendly experience.

I can see why S4B would probably not be the fasted growing collaboration tool in higher education, because many of these institutions use other collaboration tools like Blackboard, Google or something else. Do you remember ever hitting up you classmates on Lync in college?

But the Zoom insight is interesting… Check out the full report to see what I mean.

#5 Polycom is Ranked High For Interoperability

Among participants who selected “on-premise only” environments for video conferencing in their organization, Polycom was selected more often than Cisco for interoperability. This was the only segment in the survey where we found another vendor was more popular than Cisco for interoperability.

Given Polycom’s fairly recent integration with Skype for Business in many of their products, this response was very insightful. I could be way off, but given the information we received in the survey about the growth of S4B, perhaps they are somehow linked.

I don’t want to give away the full report so here I will let you make the decision to take the next step. The full report is available for download for free right here on our site. Enjoy and as always feel free to give me some feedback! Thanks and happy Holidays!