A View from the Other Side of the Chasm

In his 1991 classic bestseller, Crossing the Chasm, and  the 1995 follow-up book , Inside the Tornado, author Geoffrey Moore offers the concept of a five-stage technology adoption life cycle, with special emphasis on a “deep and dividing chasm” that separates the early adoption of any new technology or technological paradigm from ultimate acceptance by the mass market.  Moore theorizes that this wide gap, if not bridged carefully from a marketing standpoint, often threatens the success of new-entrant companies; even those with the most innovative and disruptive technologies.  He suggests that if and when a product “crosses the chasm” it then experiences the Tornado, “a period of mass-market adoption, when the general marketplace switches over to the new infrastructure paradigm” which hopefully propels the product into a period of mass-market adoption.


Well, I’m pleased to report that, after years of steadfast effort to build and secure that all important bridge, Vidyo is now solidly positioned on the other side of that chasm and experiencing rapid growth within the tornado … and though it’s a bit breezy at times, the energy in here is great!

Yesterday Vidyo announced that it completed another record year in 2012 — delivering 68% billings growth, with our top 25 reseller partners growing over 435% on aggregate since Q1 2011 through Q4 2012.  All evidence points to Vidyo’s holistic business growth, market traction and our leading role in transforming the video conferencing industry.

The new paradigm Vidyo introduced into the video conferencing industry, has truly changed the game and transformed the industry to where incumbent players have not only acknowledged Vidyo’s approach, they have announced support for Scalable Video Coding (SVC), the standard chosen by Vidyo to enable the unique VidyoRouter architecture.  SVC has gone from something that only the earliest adopters had heard of five years ago, to a key purchasing criterion for those looking to invest in a video conferencing solution.  Vidyo’s new paradigm has brought costs and quality in line with customer expectations and, as a result, opened new markets and usage scenarios that are thriving from the benefit of Vidyo’s architectural advantages that enable our customers to scale their deployments to support 1000x more devices (off-the-shelf hardware like desktops, laptops and mobile) than room systems!

According to Moore’s innovation adoption life cycle, the other side of the chasm is comprised of what he calls the “pragmatists” of the market – those who need to see well-established proof before investing in a product or service. Pragmatists want to know that others are using the product successfully and their risks are minimal.  As more and more pragmatists are convinced, market demand increases exponentially, and that’s when a new product or paradigm is “inside the tornado”– being swept up to the top of the technology adoption curve.

Vidyo is well on its way to the top of the mass market curve – we have provided ample evidence that our paradigm is the smart choice!  In 2012 we have continued to win many new customers, establish key partnerships, solidify existing ones, and open a variety of new markets. Most importantly, in terms of Moore’s theory, we have secured the necessary “lighthouse” customers and partners whose beacons shine with the successes they are having and illuminate the many technological and economic advantages Vidyo has brought to their organizations.  Vidyo has seen tremendous success with the pragmatists (while opening other new usage scenarios in markets comprised of enthusiasts and innovators), a segment of the market that has fueled our growth.

So…what does it look like from the other side of the chasm?  From the early majority side, the view is expansive and promising … there are hills to climb, no doubt … but as any mountaineer knows, with the proper skills, tools and experience, the sky is the limit. Vidyo has the insight, a substantial technology advantage and, the proven experience to continue to transform the video communications industry, forging new ground in terms of quality, scalability and affordability.   Check out Vidyo’s news and see the view for yourself.

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Ashish is Vidyo’s CMO and Senior Vice President, Corporate Development. Ashish joins Vidyo having successfully led product marketing, product management, channels and business development teams in unified communication, collaboration, mobile and telecom companies with a focus on growing and scaling the business. Previously, Ashish led the Business Development and Strategy team for Microsoft Office Division’s Unified Communications Group. He also led Microsoft’s Channel Sales and Marketing team for Real Time Communications, led and managed key Microsoft Office and Unified Communications and Collaboration strategic alliances and co-led key strategic initiatives. Prior to Microsoft, Ashish was VP of Product and Solutions at Alcatel/Genesys Telecommunications, VP of Marketing and Business Development at Telera Inc., management consultant for Braxton/Deloitte Consulting, and held marketing leadership positions at HP and Covad. Ashish has an MBA from UCLA and a Bachelors in Economics and Computer Science from Grinnell College.

Vidyo Crosses the Pond

They say Claridge’s of London is “Fit for a King” so, for our humble purposes, it was more than a fitting spot for Vidyo’s first formal introduction to the UK press.  Along with one of Vidyo’s most valuable partners, Imago, we hosted a luncheon that royally combined intelligent exchanges of information and the building of professional ties and relationships with new media colleagues.  Other than the requisite jet-lag from having just gotten back, I’m happy to report that it was a smashing success!

The intent of the gathering was to present the UK media with news about Vidyo and Imago’s new alliance that positions Imago as the first European “hosted distributor” of Vidyo’s unique video conferencing solution. The hosted service, VaaS-t (Video as a Service-trade only), is built on Vidyo’s award-winning technology and will be available to Imago’s resellers to offer to their end-customers via a subscription model; eliminating the need to deploy any conferencing infrastructure.

Ultimately, the lively lunch conversation expanded far beyond this one announcement and became much more about the overall video conferencing market, its challenges and its projected growth.  It was a great event for all who attended!

Among the attendees were key trade journalists, including editors from AV Magazine, InAVate, ComputerWeekly.com and Installation Europe, who were brought up to speed on how Vidyo’s technology solves a variety of business challenges seen in the market today, as well as how Vidyo is creating a new ecosystem for service-based consumption and as a result, has spurred analysts to predict a market that could easily grow to $22B.

When journalists asked about the Vidyo-Imago service, itself — what was included,  and possible challenges for 24/7 support —  Ian Vickerage, Managing Director at Imago, explained the emphasis Imago will place on support, and reiterated the importance of providing end-users with an affordable, telepresence-quality visual communication service that can easily be accessed over the Internet.

For me, it was a quick but rewarding visit to London.  Although VidyoConferencing is typically my “method of choice” for meetings (of course!) … it’s always great to have the opportunity to physically be in the same room with reporters, especially those from far off places who are willing to freely share their excitement around our industry. Both literally and figuratively, much ground was covered; Gordon Ramsay’s signature Beef Wellington and Risotto were delish!  All in all a good and informative time was had by all.

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Ashish is Vidyo’s CMO and Senior Vice President, Corporate Development. Ashish joins Vidyo having successfully led product marketing, product management, channels and business development teams in unified communication, collaboration, mobile and telecom companies with a focus on growing and scaling the business. Previously, Ashish led the Business Development and Strategy team for Microsoft Office Division’s Unified Communications Group. He also led Microsoft’s Channel Sales and Marketing team for Real Time Communications, led and managed key Microsoft Office and Unified Communications and Collaboration strategic alliances and co-led key strategic initiatives. Prior to Microsoft, Ashish was VP of Product and Solutions at Alcatel/Genesys Telecommunications, VP of Marketing and Business Development at Telera Inc., management consultant for Braxton/Deloitte Consulting, and held marketing leadership positions at HP and Covad. Ashish has an MBA from UCLA and a Bachelors in Economics and Computer Science from Grinnell College.

Federal E-Rate Program Helping K-12 Classrooms Travel the Globe

It’s easy to forget that one of the greatest discoveries of modern science began with a field trip. An inquisitive undergraduate at Cambridge University with a fascination for the natural world was given an opportunity to leave the classroom and set sail. This voyage from England to the shores of South America resulted in the theory of natural selection and catapulted the amateur naturalist, Charles Darwin, into the history books.

We can all recall participating in field trips of our own during our school years. Those bumpy rides at the back of museum-bound yellow buses may have helped us identify with Darwin’s bouts with seasickness, but our destination was most likely some place across town and not the exotic Galapagos. New technology, however, is helping resurrect the adventuresome spirit of Darwin, offering children access to learning opportunities not just around the block but around the globe.

We recently had the good fortune to see this new kind of learning in action at the San Carlos Charter Learning Center (SCCLC). Vidyo’s platform for education provided 22 California middle-schoolers the opportunity to spend an afternoon at a museum in Denver, 1,289 miles from their Bay Area classroom. The students participated in a virtual class on the circulatory system, and in the true spirit of scientific inquiry, they each got the chance to virtually dissect a sheep’s heart.

“The students and I formed a relationship with the science educator in Denver, and at a point, the monitor disappeared and it was as if he was in our classroom as one of us.”

“Seeing a heart on an iPad made learning accessible and interactive in a new way the students had never experienced before,” explained Ben Sibrack, a science and language teacher at SCCLC.  “The students and I formed a relationship with the science educator in Denver, and at a point, the monitor disappeared and it was as if he was in our classroom as one of us.”

Virtual field trips can bring course material to life in ways not possible with traditional, less interactive learning.  “We got to have our lesson in a whole new way. I thought it was really cool, different and fun,” explained one young student.  Another 6th grader surprised us by revealing, “I liked the virtual trip better than a real field trip because I can focus better in the classroom.”

Only a few short years ago, video conferencing was reserved for the Fortune 500 and universities with deep pockets. Today, however, HD-quality, multi-person conferences can take place over ordinary broadband networks and off-the-shelf computers already installed in most classrooms. To help schools make video conferencing an affordable reality, Vidyo is announcing that our education products are now eligible for discounts through E-Rate, a federally funded program that provides assistance for schools and libraries to purchase telecommunications and Internet access.

Museums, zoos, research institutes and theaters are embracing virtual fieldtrips via video conferencing as a way to expand their educational mission and reach a wider array of learners. A classroom today can travel to the National World War II Museum in New Orleans, LA to learn about the attack on Pearl Harbor, visit The Smithsonian Environmental Research Center to take a virtual walk through forest canopies, or learn how to prepare a space shuttle for lift-off at NASA’s America’s Spaceport: John F. Kennedy Space Center. We hope that E-Rate and virtual field trips will help to democratize education by making world-class learning resources available to all learners.

“There’s so much potential with what we can do with HD, multiparty video conferencing over the Internet.  It gives us the opportunity to really break down barriers and change how we educate, in a way that was never thought possible a few years ago,” explained Mr. Sibrack. “With the kind of video conferencing that Vidyo delivers, we’re able to easily set up collaborative educational communities between schools within the Bay Area.  For that matter, we’ll now be able to set up collaborative communities across the U.S. and internationally as well.  These possibilities are amazing.”

I came to the United States to study and be part of the computer revolution.  Today, our schools are challenged to provide the level of educational exposure required to keep our students competitive with the world.  I believe one of the issues is that schools don’t have access to experts locally but, ironically, the United States has the largest resources of such experts in country – making it a distribution problem. Vidyo conferencing and communications solves this problem by bringing the experts closer to students and by making educational content available virtually from everywhere.

Click here to learn more about bringing Vidyo to your classroom through the E-Rate program.