Unified Communications Week in Review
Unified communications (UC) news this week showed off a new set of meeting collaboration tools from Mindjet, displayed the booming sales of UC-related products and falling revenue in the private branch exchange (PBX) market, demonstrated real-world results for video conferencing in a county prison, and analyzed the usage of network analysis to enhance upload speeds for mobile apps.
Mindjet, a software-as-a-service enterprise, recently announced its release of the MindManager Meetings Jetpack. Mindjet targets business users with this platform and hopes to make meetings more efficient and practical with its various tools and templates. Businesses can use its brainstorming and mind-mapping tools to flesh out ideas and enhance collaboration between group members. An included MindManager “map” provides business officials with the ability to create visual diagrams that follow a core idea and branch out. The branches may contain elements such as embedded data, text, or hyperlinks that display the full visual representation of an embellished idea.
An Infonetics report discussed this week showed that UC systems are breaking down the fabric of PBX sales. The research firm notes that UC sales are up 27 percent in the first quarter of 2014 compared to the previous year; in that same period, PBX sales dropped eight percent. This builds upon previous research the group completed in which it predicted that UC sales would reach $88 billion globally by 2018. That same research, unfortunately for interested parties, predicts further decline for PBX.
Telemate, a video conferencing business, reported real-world results regarding its involvement with the Utah County Jail. Inmates at its Spanish Fork facility can now remain virtually connected to family and friends by way of video conferencing. It reportedly costs taxpayers nothing extra, and it cuts down on fuel that family members may have used to visit inmates in person. Furthermore, there is a reported lessening of inmate-to-inmate and inmate-to-staff violence directly attributed to inmate satisfaction with being socially connected and finding ways to occupy their time by connecting with people outside the jail.
Finally, Flash Networks, a mobile optimization enterprise, announced recently that it has realized increased upload speeds for social media apps such as Snapchat and Whatsapp; in some cases, it can increase upload speeds by 30 percent. The company said it can use network congestion detection algorithms to enhance transmission rates based on the available network data. It identifies inefficiencies in the TCP stack and works around those inefficiencies to make data flow in a manner better suited to the modern LTE network.