New Polycom Cloud Partners Come Into Focus
Polycom has partnered with VoIP software app vendor BroadSoft to build a hosted solution that enables solution providers to offer unified communication (UC) services in the cloud. It’s the latest in a string of Polycom partner moves. Here are the details.
The service, dubbed V2Connect, is a fully integrated voice and video solution providing one common feature set for voice and video terminals and a single numbering plan accessible via private dialing, so users can be reached via mobile device and transfer the call to a videoconference system if necessary. It runs on Polycom’s network infrastructure and endpoints using BroadSoft’s BroadWorks VoIP application platform.
Polycom and BroadSoft also have created a program for resellers and systems integrators to host and manage the V2Connect offering for their enterprise customers. The program, which will be available sometime in the second quarter, also allows VARs and SIs to partner with service providers to offer V2Connect along with customer premises equipment and software to midsize to large customers – not as a hosted offering but as an in-house system that would be managed by the service providers.
V2Connect is a nifty idea and one that falls right in line with Polycom’s strategy to become a leader in the UC space. The company is on a roll, having announced partnerships with three communications vendors – Siemens Enterprise Network, Juniper Networks and now BroadSoft – in the past week as well as revamping its partner program. Indeed, the frenzied pace suggests there may be even more tricks up Polycom’s sleeve.
And now that Tandberg’s status in the interoperability space has been downgraded since Cisco Systems purchased it late last year, Polycom is quickly gaining ground as a leader in UC. Cisco, not known for playing well with other systems, has tried to keep up appearances with its TelePresence systems (which will probably include Tandberg technology at some point) by releasing a Telepresence Interoperability Protocol (TIP) that would allow interoperability between vendors, but the move is a meager attempt to skirt around the open standards avalanche that is engulfing the UC industry.
Polycom, however, has some serious skin in the game, with its revamped channel program and new initiatives for the channel, including V2Connect. Taking full advantage of open architectures has been Polycom’s strategy, and being more partner-focused will help bring the vendor further into the hearts and minds of solution providers.