Unified Communications Featured Article

Plantronics Closes on Polycom

July 03, 2018

It’s a done deal. Plantronics yesterday announced its acquisition of Polycom is now complete. The $2 billion deal brings together leaders in the business headset, and phone and conferencing system, arenas.

This seems to be a good pairing. Effective business communications and collaboration rely on a variety of products and solutions to come together. So now customers can get more complete unified communications solutions from a single supplier. In addition to simplifying the buying process, the company should also be able to make the joint solutions easier to manage and use.

“Plantronics now offers an unparalleled portfolio of integrated, intelligent solutions that spans headsets, software, desk phones, audio and video conferencing, and cloud services,” said Joe Burton, Plantronics’ president and CEO. “This combined offering empowers people with the tools and flexibility they need to create the best experience when connecting to what is most important to them.”

This is just one of many recent acquisitions in the business communications and UC space recently. Polycom in January purchased Obihai. The same month Star2Star merged with Blueface. Mitel has acquired ShoreTel, among others. Cisco snapped up BroadSoft. And LogMeIn has bought Jive, Citrix’s GoTo business, and Nanorep

As for Plantronics, business headsets may not seem like a particularly exciting or dynamic arena. But there is quite a bit of innovation and thought leadership in this space. For example, in a speech at the recent Perspectives18 gathering, Polycom’s Rob Hornish talked about how new, more open office settings call for new “soundscaping” solutions.

Audio and video experts have innovated on background noise suppression, deliver conferencing solutions that follow the conversation and automatically direct cameras and microphones to the current speaker, and more.

Plantronics also understands that artificial intelligence and machine learning are impacting how businesses get the job done. And the company is working to position itself as a thought leader in the AI space. The company’s Director of Engineering Arun Rajasekaran last month tweeted: “To full exploit AI’s potential will require a marriage of advanced connectivity and human-led technologies.”

We’ll be discussing how AI and ML are changing business communications and collaboration  – and the opportunities and challenges that creates – at The Future of Work event. This event will be held Jan. 30-Feb. 1 in Fort Lauderdale.

TMC is accepting session and speaker suggestions for The Future of Work through July 31. To submit your ideas, please visit this link.

For more information on The Future of Work, visit www.futureofworkexpo.com.

To learn about exhibit, speaking, sponsorship and branding, and other opportunities at The Future of Work, contact Dave Rodriguez at 203-852-6800 x146 or drodriguez@tmcnet.com.

Edited by Maurice Nagle