Tech Trends 2016

One week down and 51 more to go.

Read on to find out what 2016 will bring us for Unified Communications (UC) and collaboration, WebRTC, the cloud, VoIP, Voice-as-a-Service, and the PSTN.

Can UC Me Now?

Unified Communication (UC) and collaboration technologies will continue to expand into new areas including mobile where its use “may reach a level where integration with UC is a must-have rather than a nice-to-have,” says Jon Arnold, Principal of J Arnold & Associates, an independent telecom analyst. We should also expect to see a lot more video usage with UC and “there is a growing audience that is comfortable using it, even for routine communication.” When UC vendors and providers can deliver high quality video from the cloud with a user experience that feels just like a regular old phone call, people will start using it.

The Gateway to WebRTC and SIP-Enabled RTC

It’s likely that WebRTC’s time to shine has come in 2016. Paul Desmond at The UC Buyer writes that, “It appears the components are in place such that we’ll see more and more solid, useful WebRTC applications in the coming year.” Desmond points out that Sonus has developed a WebRTC gateway that’s billed as being able to bridge WebRTC and SIP-enabled real-time communication across mobile and browsers for click-to-connect voice and video.

Business Forecast is Looking Cloudy

The “cloud” may be the most overused buzzword in the industry but, guess what? It’s usage is growing so we’re going be hearing a lot more about it (sorry if you’re already numb to it). Dan Kobialka at Talkin’ Cloud explains that, “Although many businesses have already adopted cloud solutions, more companies could explore ways to optimize their cloud usage to reduce their operating costs and increase their revenues in 2016.” Read more about that and 7 Cloud Trends to Watch in 2016.

Back to the Future of Telecom

Hosted and cloud service providers are increasingly finding it necessary to over PSTN access to compete with other carriers that offer complete packages. This is reminiscent of a questioned posed to end users in the 2015 SIP Survey from the SIP School who were asked what kind of communication network their company uses. The majority of respondents said they have a mixture of PBX technologies in place from IP PBXs, to TDM, to cloud-based services. J.R. Simmons in his No Jitter article, The More Things Change, notes that “Providers are finding it necessary to offer dial-tone services coupled with their fancy new platforms — becoming total communications utilities reminiscent of Ma Bell.”

Help Me Help You

Customers still want to talk to human beings when something is wrong and emails and IM just aren’t getting it done. “Many established help desk providers, keenly aware of the importance of built-in voice capabilities, are rolling out new VaaS features to keep up with customer demand,” writes Rob Marvin in his PC Mag article, Voice-as-a-Service: Where VoIP Meets Help Desks. Web based calling that’s built in to a help desk platform helps to improve the customer experience while helping the customer service reps close out help desk tickets.

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