It’s amazing that an industry with so many analysts and prognosticators, that we missed Slack.
Thinking back, we knew that a social-like interface would be crucial to the future of communications.
This is why Microsoft bought Yammer, a business Twitter. For whatever reason, it never took off after Microsoft purchased it.
Cisco saw this trend as well – they launched Quad – which for all practical purposes was a Facebook for business.
It crashed and burned.
Slack not only took off as sort of Twitter 2.0 for work – it changed the strategy at Microsoft and Cisco to focus on Teams – just to catch up with what both companies knew was coming but couldn’t capitalize on.
Sometimes you can know where things are going but the directions are fuzzy.
So what comes next?
Phil Bowers, Senior Marketing Manager at Grandstream has some great thoughts.
When the company first launched in 2002 we visited them in Massachusettes -at the time they differentiated themselves based on cost. Over the years, they have had an impressive growth-rate and moved upmarket. They have exhibited great thought-leadership in the UC space.
According to Phil, this is what’s next for the market:
- Big data Integration – Data is becoming one of the largest industries in the world. The possibilities for what we can achieve by combining communication data with all other types of business data is endless.
- Smart Buildings – Facility Management platforms and UC are already starting to team up to efficiently manage HVAC, facility access, lighting and more – in real-time based on real data. This is will soon become commonplace.
- Growth of automation and smart UC systems – By integrating UC solutions with big data and facility management, we are only going to increase the amount of data we have access to. The merging of UC with all business platforms is going to continue to make communications technology smarter and more automated, and UC needs to harness that power effectively.
In a way, these ideas are more than just the future of UC – they are also some of the areas where UC and UCaaS providers can add value to reduce commoditization. The race to zero is a problem in all competitive, commoditized markets. Selling solutions to business problems is a great way to open corporate checkbooks. Especially for example, in companies looking to embrace digital transformation.
Speaking of Digital transformation – we are happy to have Grandstream return to ITEXPO as a sponsor Feb 12-14, 2020 in Fort Lauderdale, FL. We suggest every company looking to grow more quickly, register for ITEXPO and make sure to meet with Grandstream and the other exhibitors at the show to ensure they learn new ways to maximize their growth and profits in an ever-more competitive world.
Sometimes, it helps to meet with others in the industry to get a better handle on not only where we are going, but how we get there.