Business News – Last year, Polycom announced the launch of a slew of products all designed to answer the rising demand in video conferencing for cloud based as well as virtualized software solutions. The launch is well-timed, arriving at a time when the video conferencing market finds itself in the midst of a transition. Vice President of solutions marketing at Polycom, John Antanaitis, says on the matter: “It’s no longer ‘Do you want video and do you understand video? It’s now about how you want your video delivered.”
The same article, published November of last on the eWeek site, mentioned how video communication is now being delivered via software. According to the IDC analysts, the cloud will continue to play a huge role in the transition all throughout, as more and more companies eschew hardware-dependent technologies for soft-ware based solutions that don’t cost an arm and a leg.
Video conferencing continues to be a topic of high interest among companies looking to invest in the technology. However, the growing trend points to a steadily rising demand for video systems offered at low cost to companies. Demand for software-centric products is also on an upward surge.
This explains the success of businesses like the Blue Jeans Network, a company that offers software along with cloud based solutions. In the year 2013 alone, the company saw a growth rate of 500 percent. This was accompanied by a 50 percent spike in the usage of the company’s technology. By January of last year, the number of monthly subscribers for Blue Jeans had already reached 100 percent.
According to the “The Cloud, Videoconferencing, and You” article from the Webtorials site, virtualization is what happens when a software application isn’t dependent on its hardware. This makes it possible to install the software on a standard server. In the video conferencing space, what this means is a virtualized multipoint control unit or MCU. This virtualized MCU could then be installed on standard server all on its own, effectively killing the need for any MCU device or infrastructure to support it. This is, of course, great news for companies who want the technology but despise the hardware—and its associated mountain of costs—that video conferencing used to need before it could operate.
Here are some of the possible advantages that virtualized solutions can offer:
With no need for expensive hardware anymore, companies can get huge, huge savings out of the deal. Running technologies the likes of web based conferencing could now happen without companies needing to clean out the bank or shell out a chunk of their capital just to buy and upgrade the necessary hardware. It’s a pretty dramatic reduction in costs, which is, again, great news for companies looking to get the technology.
With a virtualized solution, initiating video conferencing at a new location feels closer to activating a service rather than the exhausting, stressful and often demanding process of having to build, maintain as well as patch up and regularly upgrade the structure, when it comes to a video communication network infrastructure wholly reliant on hardware.
In the case of a virtualized solution, there is no need to spend so much capital just to increase the system’s capacity. The only thing required, in this case, is additional licenses. Server blades must also be supplied in order to provide for the current demand.
4. Future proofing
In the past, companies were forced to engage in a perpetual game of catch-up when it came to hardware. It was a sore point. No sooner had you upgraded than a new update materialized out of the blue, which effectively turned the company’s newly-bought upgrade into an obsolete piece of hardware. Now, virtualized solutions do away with a great deal of these problems. Companies no longer have to worry about needing to upgrade anything or even update anything.
Services classified under cloud computing cover those offered by companies such as Amazon, VMware and Rackspace. These services cover such things as raw computational processing. Data storage online is also included. Cloud computing services are basically huge racks of standard servers located at a number of server farms spread a good distance apart. All these racks are configured for online access. This allows any sort of program that could be installed on a standard server—like a virtualized MCU, for instance—to be installed up on a cloud service. So long as the standard server is operating in a company’s data center, this type of connection then becomes possible.
Cloud Computing Plus Virtualization
So when cloud computing is put together with virtualization, or with the virtualized software, the results are pretty much obvious. By combining these two, companies can have the means to support video conferencing technology that has no need for an expensive, constantly-upgraded hardware network. The combination of virtualized software and cloud computing also makes it possible for internal servers to process virtualized solutions.