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June - 2016 - issue > CXO INSIGHT

4GAME-CHANGERS FOR VOICE AND COLLABORATION PROVIDERS

Vishy Gopalakrishnan
AVP of Voice & Collaboration-AT&T
Tuesday, May 31, 2016
Vishy Gopalakrishnan
We're now comfortably into the 21st century, an era sci-fi has long awaited. While we're still waiting on some futuristic dreams (how long until I can get that flying car?), others are within our grasp. And I mean literally at our fingertips: the mobile device you may be reading this on probably rivals' supercomputers from the '90s. With all of this power in our hands, keeping us constantly connected, customers are starting to expect mobility to "come standard." It's no longer a fad or shiny new feature-it's mandatory.

We're used to being able to talk, text, email, browse the Internet, and even have video conversations from our personal mobile devices. In fact, many of my colleagues use smartphone and tablet-only outside the office. With so much power, speed and connection in the palms of our hands, there's no reason why business communication and collaboration can not be just as mobile.

We are moving from simply having mobile capabilities to seamless and integrated mobile communication and collaboration. As older voice and collaboration solutions come up for renewal or get retired, new solutions are offering all-in one collaboration. They are bringing everything together-voice calling, email, IM, presence, voicemail, and voice and video conferencing. Mobility is a key pillar of these solutions. New capabilities and younger workers' preference for working on the go are changing how we collaborate. Customers are demanding these solutions, embracing them and reaping the benefits. Yet as mobile collaboration expands and evolves, providers will need to adapt too.

1. Bandwidth. Capabilities like video conferencing and screen sharing are data-intensive. AT&T's wireless network alone has seen a traffic increase of 100,000 percent in the last eight years due to video. Providers must prepare to accommodate more video traffic and real-time communication. The younger millennial workers who are most eagerly calling for expanded mobile collaboration also have little tolerance for slow speeds and dropped connections. Connectivity and quality of service will need to remain high and consistent.

Service providers will need to keep this increase in traffic in mind as they expand. Some providers are already testing one solution, 5G networks, already in some locations. At AT&T, we are shifting toward software defined networking (SDN). Today, we are serving millions of customers through SDN. We see it as the basis for the data and video demands of tomorrow and the networks of the future.


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