Desktop Conferencing-Touted as a Game Changer for Video in India

Date:   Friday , May 31, 2013

LifeSize, headquartered in Austin is a provider of high-definition video collaboration. Founded in the the year 2003 the company was acquired by Logitech (SIX: LOGN NASDAQ: LOGI) in 2009.

Video Evolution with Devices Converging

Over the past half a decade, India has evolved into a key market for video in the APAC. One of the biggest reasons for that is the growing broadband industry, which has given us a huge boost in further penetrating into the enterprise and SMB segments. The other factor driving the adoption of video is mobility. With the launch of 3G services and mobile video, a lot of enterprises are looking to avail video on smartphones and tablets. India is at the cusp of a revolution with technology platforms emerging to deliver high speed services. 4G is on the way and, with voice traffic stabilizing, data related services are becoming a core focus area for telecom service providers and that's good news for video.

Desktop Conferencing: Next big thing for India

Traditionally, video conferencing has been confined to the boardroom and to conferencing set-ups. As companies expand, they realize that setting up conference rooms across the country is not feasible. Enterprises are increasingly looking to provide video on a mass scale as in video for employees rather than just the top management.

On the other hand, telepresence has been declining for the past three quarters. The costs are prohibitive and the RoI has proved to be difficult to realize. There are some niche verticals that are employing this technology because of the nature of operations. Telepresence also restricts you to a specific location and a certain number of people. It defies the logic of video for the masses and, therefore, organizations are not seeing value in it.

Desktop conferencing is being touted as a game changer for video in India but market still needs to be developed. According to Gartner Report, 200 million people across the world would be using desktop conferencing by 2015. Desktop conferencing in India, however, is yet to take off in a big way. Endpoint integration and webcam usage are some of the challenges that enterprise users face today, especially in verticals that are not particularly technology-savvy. Moreover, within the enterprise, there are plenty of IT restrictions when you come in from the Cloud onto an enterprise WAN and that is another hindrance to the adoption of video conferencing. Then there is the CAPEX issue. Companies increasingly want to take the OPEX route and that can result in lower bandwidth and service issues having an adverse effect on RoI.

Be it a piece of hardware for desktop conferencing or an app loaded on your laptop, enterprises are looking to provide video beyond conferencing rooms. Hence, portable high definition solutions combined with constantly improving Internet speeds are enabling remote workers and frequent business travellers to access the corporate video conferencing system while on the road or from the home office. Team members across the state or nation are joining together in video conferences without anyone having to travel.

Internet Aiding Growth of Video

2012 saw another solid year of growth for Internet and video conferencing among businesses. User demand is growing at a strong pace indicating that Internet and video meetings are going mainstream. Internet and video conferencing are now a key part of enterprise communications. Additionally, prices continue to decline making virtual meetings a viable technology for all, including small and mid-sized businesses.

Several emerging trends are changing the face of virtual meetings. The plain old vanilla online meetings of yesterday are giving way to enhanced offerings that include HD video, advanced mobile capabilities, social media integration, and workplace collaboration tools. These trends are increasingly getting intertwined along with a continued focus on improving the user experience.

The LifeSize UVC Platform integrates the capabilities of multiple single-purpose infrastructure products and makes them instantly available from one interface with one login account.

Innovation is as Important as Business

If we look back over the last decade, what we have learnt is that the speed of change seems to be accelerating. The implications for business are that the only way businesses today, whether large or small, are going to survive and thrive is through acceptance and continuous innovation in the face of this change.

We run a lot of different Marketing programs with the Channel Partners to promote Video Conferencing solutions to the market. The ongoing training of staff and Channel Partners is effective to stimulate people’s thought. LifeSize Video mobility and UVC strategies also help to drive the sales to open more market opportunities.

Innovation success starts with strategy and leadership, in which innovation is prioritised, as important to the business. Guided by this strategic direction, the firms resource innovativeness is in their operations including their workforces’ creativity. (As told to Rachita Sharma)