“Every decade or so a new technology emerges that is truly disruptive,” said RingCentral's president and COO.

Claudia Adrien

March 29, 2023

4 Min Read
Microsoft's Nicole Herskowitz
Microsoft's Nicole Herskowitz

ENTERPRISE CONNECT — Nicole Herskowitz (pictured above on stage) echoed what representatives from most other organizations, including Cisco and RingCentral, are voicing at this year’s Enterprise Connect. During the conference’s keynote on Tuesday, the Microsoft Teams vice president maybe summarized it best. She said generative AI is a game changer. It’s an overused phrase but couldn’t be more appropriate here.

“What would have taken me hours in the past, it would happen within just seconds with [Microsoft 365] Copilot,” she said of the next-generation AI tool.

She added that using Copilot is a decision-making tool for her.

“It’s not about summarizing the information,” Herskowitz said. “It’s about the sentiments of the meeting.”

That’s when she showed the audience members how they can ask Copilot what the “mood” of a recorded meeting is and receive a synopsis.

These technological developments seem revolutionary compared to six years ago when Microsoft first unveiled Microsoft Teams at Enterprise Connect. Since then, the company rebuilt Teams from the ground up making it much easier to collaborate. The latest addition includes a loop component for users to create an agenda which becomes a “living part of the meeting,” Herskowitz said.

Cisco’s Cinematic Experience

Representatives from Cisco took the stage to say that when it comes to AI, the “next normal is here.” However, despite the fact tools like generative AI seem effortless from a user standpoint, artificial intelligence is quite hard. That was according to Snorre Kjesbu, senior vice president and general manager of collaboration devices at Cisco.


Cisco’s Snorre Kjesbu

“What is even harder is taking AI and building experiences that are useable,” Kjesbu said.

He added that the company continues to work on developing AI tools to understand a customer’s mood.

Of course, usable experiences are part of Cisco’s mantra. One highlight from the company’s keynote presentation was that Cisco creates crystal clear video despite the user’s technologies. No longer will consumers need a lot of bandwidth. Kjesbu intimated what that would mean for people communicating in developing countries.

Along that same theme, Kjesbu also demonstrated how Cisco beautifies the look and feel of video. Through Webex video intelligence, the tool can predict optimal lighting needed to enhance video.

And Cisco is expanding video intelligence, officials said. New video technologies will create “cinematic meetings.” It will be like having a movie director transition from shot to shot, scene to scene.

Audio intelligence, a feature the company released during the pandemic, has filtered out 96 billion minutes of background noise. No longer are coffee maker sounds or a dog’s bark the bane of a meeting’s existence.

These advancements are critical as 98% of meetings will have a remote participant, Cisco said.

RingCentral’s Macroeconomic Case


RingCentral’s Mo Katibeh

“Every decade or so, a new technology emerges that is truly disruptive,” said Mo Katibeh, president and COO at RingCentral.

He added that the public’s reaction to AI tools launched in the last few months is similar to other technologies: the automobile, the internet, the cloud.

“I know that we are at the beginning of the AI journey,” Katibeh said.

It’s a journey that couldn’t come at a more opportune time in some respects. The macroeconomic environment has put pressure on CIOs to deliver “digital dividends,” Katibeh added. Technologies like generative AI allow businesses to work smarter and to maximize business outcomes.

“We’ve been looking at AI to transform business outcomes for customers,” he said.

What does that entail?

It means developing initiatives such as RingSense for Sales, “a conversation intelligence platform that can automate workflows, unearth insights and upskill employees,” according to the company’s website.

It also means sales representatives won’t need to take many detailed notes and can get back to doing, well, sales. Repetitive tasks become minimal.

“Our goal is to help businesses unify entire workloads,” Katibeh said.

RingSense leverages RingCentral’s own proprietary, native generative AI but can dock on other AIs. However, RingCentral said it isn’t done. It’s working on technologies beyond serving the “knowledge worker.”

There are 2.7 billion frontline workers in the world, far more than knowledge workers. RingCentral for Frontline Workers will be available this summer.

The company said it “provides instant, clear and secure voice communications for frontline teams at the push of a button, turning employee- or company-owned devices into smart walkie-talkies.”

Want to contact the author directly about this story? Have ideas for a follow-up article? Email Claudia Adrien or connect with her on LinkedIn.


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About the Author(s)

Claudia Adrien

Claudia Adrien is a reporter for Channel Futures where she covers breaking news. Prior to Informa, she wrote about biosecurity and infectious disease for a national publication. She holds a degree in journalism from the University of Florida and resides in Tampa.

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