Vidyo Positioned a Visionary in Gartner Magic Quadrant for Web Conferencing

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Today we shared news that Gartner positioned Vidyo as a “Visionary” in the Magic Quadrant for Web Conferencing. We are thrilled that Gartner moved us from the Niche Players Quadrant deep into the Visionary Quadrant. This comes on the heels of another key industry report, the Aragon Globe Report on Web and Video Conferencing, where we were named a “Leader”. And earlier this year Vidyo was also positioned as a “Leader” in the Gartner Magic Quadrant for Group Video Systems. We are very honored to be recognized by these well-respected research organizations.

These reports underscore an emerging trend, the convergence of web and video conferencing. The value and demand for a single unified communications platform, that can deliver both the virtues of web conferencing and the quality and scalability of our video conferencing solutions, have prompted many customers to replace their web conferencing with a stand-alone Vidyo solution.

The VidyoWorksTM platform delivers presence, directory and ad-hoc video calling in addition to web conferencing and webinar features, such as click-to-connect, which can simplify ease of use. The Vidyo platform allows customers to address multiple use cases with a single investment.

The VidyoWorks platform to address the evolving requirements of the conferencing market and we firmly believe that offering the highest quality, most scalable and error resilient platform will continue to set Vidyo apart in the future as the web conferencing and video conferencing markets converge.

We see Vidyo’s inclusion in these reports as strong indicators of our continued momentum in the marketplace and we don’t plan to slow down anytime soon!

Quick Guide to Successful Video Collaboration

Collaboration TipsCollaboration is necessary to the success of any business. When in-person collaboration isn’t possible (when employees are dispersed or traveling), video conferencing is a great alternative. But how can you ensure meetings will be productive and time-efficient? How does preparing for a video call differ from an audio call? Here are a few tips:

Ensure familiarity with video collaboration tools: If a meeting is with important stakeholders or participants using a video collaboration platform for the first time, perform a pre-call test to ensure all attendees’ technology is working properly. This helps avoid last-minute trouble shooting during a scheduled meeting.

Engage attendees: Participation is essential to video collaboration. Look directly into the camera and make eye contact and address attendees by name when asking questions or for feedback. Assign speakers for various topics throughout the meeting.

Don’t Forget Video Conferencing Etiquette: In contrast to audio-only calls, meeting via video requires participants to be dressed appropriately, ready to meet in a quiet place with proper lighting.

Here are a few examples of how not to conduct yourself on a video conference:

Presentation:

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Background Noise:

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Lighting:

Vidyo-Lighting

Whether you’re meeting with employees or customers, face-to-face meetings via Vidyo are a great way to stay connected.  Easy to use and manage, Vidyo’s technology puts HD-quality, multipoint video communications within reach on virtually any device and Internet connection, anywhere. Share content and videos, collaborate with two or two hundred attendees and benefit from a flawless video meeting experience.

Google and Vidyo Bring VP9 to WebRTC

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Google just announced that the upcoming release of its Chrome browser, version 48, will have VP9 support for WebRTC.  This is an important milestone for WebRTC and Chrome for a number of reasons.  To appreciate why, it is useful to look a little bit at the history of video codec support in WebRTC as well as Google+ Hangouts, Google’s popular videoconferencing app.

HangoutsWhen Google+ Hangouts was originally launched, it used H.264 SVC, the scalable video coding extension of H.264 that Vidyo co-developed.  The use of scalability in the video codec is essential for implementing a radically different server design for multipoint video, able to deliver an unprecedented range of features: error resilience and localization, rate adaptation, personalized layout, cascading, etc.  More significantly, all this is done with extremely low delay (an order of magnitude less than a typical transcoding MCU), at a massive scale, and without any signal processing at the server.  Vidyo introduced this server design in 2008 in its patented VidyoRouter™ product.

Hangouts moved to use the open-source VP8 video codec in August 2013 so that, among other things, the client could eventually run over WebRTC as explained in interviews by senior Google management. As VP8 does not offer spatial scalability, a simpler version of it called simulcasting was used.  With this technique an endpoint produces multiple video streams at different bit rates and resolutions.  The server receives both, and selects which one to forward to receiving participants. (We later on coined the term “Selective Forwarding Unit”, or SFU, to describe the operation of these servers in a generic way.)

At the same time the transition to VP8 was being made, Vidyo and Google announced that Vidyo would be collaborating with Google to develop a scalable extension for the VP9 video codec as part of the WebRTC client open source project.  The goal is to combine the power of WebRTC with the benefits of scalability to be able to deliver the best possible experience for the end users.

VP9

The inclusion of VP9 in WebRTC in Chrome 48 marks an important milestone in this collaboration.  It is the first widely available software release of this new codec (outside a flag, across all Chrome platforms). The release incorporates the proposed standard RTP packetization for VP9, which was co-designed and developed with Vidyo and Google, and which supports the new scalability features.  Spatial and temporal scalability features in the codec itself are already in the WebM and WebRTC code repositories.

ChromeAs additional experience in deployed applications is obtained, and appropriate API support is made available at the WebRTC layer, we expect they will find their way into future versions of the Chrome browser in a backwards-compatible way.

Vidyo has utilized scalable coding to built a new server architecture for large-scale, very high quality video communication, on virtually any network and device.  This architecture excels in environments that require large scale and/or are hosted in the cloud.  It is also inherently codec-agnostic: the choice of the codec, from an infrastructure point of view, is purely a business decision.  As long as scalability is available, then the infrastructure can perform its magic.

We are very excited that we will soon be able to bring the proven benefits of this design to the WebRTC world. While this release is the first step, as the saying goes, the first step is half the journey.

Count on Customer Engagement this Holiday Season

Holiday Customer Engagement - VidyoThe holiday season is upon us and for customer-facing organizations, the holidays can drive the year’s highest volumes of customer interactions. How can organizations succeed in ensuring that customer interactions are helpful and satisfying? Customer Engagement.

Customer engagement goes beyond traditional customer service, it facilitates meaningful, productive interactions between businesses and customers to ensure satisfaction and happiness.

During this hectic time of year (for consumers and businesses) a comprehensive, high impact customer engagement strategy can be the difference between a good and a great holiday season.

Have you considered video-enabled customer engagement?

Today’s consumer is increasingly connected and mobile. Video-enabled customer engagement mimics the in-person customer experience without the hassle of the holiday crowds. Adding on-demand interactive video communications to your customer engagement channel can foster more personal customer interactions that build brand loyalty, create upsell opportunities and foster closer relationships with your customers. With the VidyoWorksTM platform, it’s easy for companies of any size to affordably integrate face-to-face video engagement into their customer engagement strategy

Take care of your customers now, and you’ll find that their loyalty will last long after the holidays are over.

For more on customer engagement for the modern enterprise, check out these related blog posts, this customer engagement infographic and more from the Vidyo website.


And while we’re in the holiday spirit here, don’t forget to check out our special 35% Off Holiday Starter Package! Just click on the banner below and get the details on this limited time offer. Cheers!

Vidyo Holiday Offer

User Adoption and Video Conferencing Deployments

Adoption-ServicesOne fish, two fish, three fish…Go!

When fish swim in the same direction in a coordinated manner, it’s called “schooling.” Fish evolved to swim in schools to improve foraging, swim more efficiently, and to protect themselves from predators. Just as schooling is essential to the livelihood to an individual fish, at Vidyo we believe a strong user adoption program is essential to the livelihood of a new technology. To create new behaviors via user adoption, however, you must understand the motivations that influence user behaviors.

In today’s technology driven work environment, often employees are living in a world of digital overload – faced with new software landing on their computer, smart phone or tablet almost daily. At the same time IT staff is required to support multiple technology initiatives with a scarcity of resources amidst launching new technology to the rest of the workforce. As a result, many companies struggle to motivate their employees to embrace newly implemented software, there are simply too many competing priorities.

How do companies find the harmonious balance to get every benefit from their technology investments and ensure those investments are being adopted and fully leveraged? They can start by investing in an innovative user adoption program that embeds technology into workflows to enhance productivity and motivates employees to use the software in their daily work.

Vidyo Adoption-Services

Top 5 Tips for Driving User Adoption:

  1. Create a strategic program plan with Executive sponsorship that assesses organizational objectives in alignment with the solution launch to support your plans for business process transformation.
  2. Promote a tactical awareness campaign that includes a comprehensive communication and marketing strategy to motivate, inspire and prepare employees for the launch.
  3. Provide ongoing training and support resources aligned with workflows and use cases designed to influence how the solution can be used in daily work.
  4. Leverage champions. As employees begin to make the solution part of their everyday workflow, they become powerful advocates, exploring new ways to use and evangelize its benefits to others.
  5. Incorporate feedback and share success stories once the solution is live to show how it is impacting company objectives and goals.

Vidyo User AdoptionNeed some help getting started with user adoption?

Our expert consulting, workflow design, and change management practices bring high touch professional services to customers and drive customer satisfaction. Learn more or about our user adoption packages here. Engage Vidyo’s Adoption Services Team now!

Here are a few success stories from Vidyo customers who have embraced user adoption programs:

A large cloud hosting company generated great excitement with their awareness campaign by producing posters, tabletop displays, banners, and customized videos to educate their employees about the benefits of Vidyo. They invested in a strong user adoption approach and successfully on boarded six thousand employees in the first 6-months of their launch.

“Fortunately throughout our experience with Vidyo there has been an emphasis on collaborating with us to provide the most effective training material and presentations to make the user experience a positive one. The efforts have resulted in identifying and eliminating system issues or stumbling blocks, which would have been missed in the absence of these efforts. I can say that we are impressed and thrilled by the efforts of Vidyo’s Adoption Services, who have provided us premier class customer treatment and high quality artifacts.” – Anonymous, Project Manager for Financial Services and Banking Company

Visit our Vidyo Knowledge Center to access quick tutorials on how to use Vidyo

Register for our free instructor-led training that including topics such as feature highlights, etiquette best practices, and getting started with Vidyo products

Customer Engagement Best Practices: Are Your Customers Camera Shy?

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A wide range of businesses from brokerage firms and banks, to hospitals and HMOs, to online retailers and big box stores are launching video-enabled customer services embedded in portals and websites via ATMs, kiosks and mobile apps. Today Verint® Systems Inc, a leader in work force optimization, announced it was using the VidyoWorksplatform to enable video interactions between customers and service employees as part of its Verint Engagement Managementsolution. SEE THE PRESS RELEASE

The more video is used, the more these newly launched customer services face a challenge that is far from technical. Put simply, their customers are camera shy. Will camera-phobic consumers scuttle your plans to add video enabled customer engagement to your business? Not if you do your homework before rolling out the service.

Here are a few tips to ensure your video enabled service is well received by your customers:

  1. Know your customer demographics. Studies show that millennials are significantly more comfortable using text chat, video chat and learning via on-demand video. If the customer base you are targeting has a high percentage of millennials, you can launch new communication channels with confidence. If you serve a mix of demographics, make sure you continue to offer more traditional channels in addition to text and video. 
  1. Is a high degree of intimacy and trust critical to your customers? Deployments of video enabled customer care in highly personalized industries such as healthcare and wealth management have demonstrated that when intimacy and trust are an essential part of the customer relationship, customers of all ages are more open to using video. If trust and intimacy are key, your customers are much more likely to embrace a video experience. 
  1. Do your customers interact with the same account rep or relationship manager each time they interact with your company? Consumers may not be comfortable conversing with a complete stranger over video, but are much more at ease when conversing with someone with whom they are familiar. To this end, if your customers interact with the same person or group of people on a regular basis, they will be more open to adopting video as a tool.
  1. Let them opt out. Your best strategy to alleviate camera shyness may be to open every call with one way video. The customer can see the agent’s video and have a conversation, but the customer’s camera is not activated.  If the customer is comfortable using video, they can opt to turn their video on by clicking a button on the screen. If not, they can still benefit from seeing the agent demonstrate a product or technique, share documents or educational videos, and provide non-verbal communication through facial expression and gestures.

For more on customer engagement for the modern enterprise, check out these related blog posts, this customer engagement infographic and more from the Vidyo website. Ready for more? Access a 21 Day FREE Trial of Vidyo today!

 

Vidyo in India: Embracing Video Conferencing

Over the past few years in India, Vidyo has seen a significant upswing in adoption of its video conferencing technology, deployment of integrated video communications applications, as well as partnerships across verticals and with service providers– a true testament to the scale, flexibility and value of the VidyoWorks™ platform!

India Government Mobile Video Conferencing

VidyoMobile™ being used by the Government of Andhra Pradesh on a tablet. 

Because Vidyo works on virtually any device and network, either in the cloud or on premises – it is the perfect fit for the specific market challenges in India. With bandwidth being a constant obstacle, Vidyo is the foolproof solution to connect and collaborate using public Internet and wireless networks that can affordably scale as needed.

The need for reliable, scalable technology has become particularly relevant in the Government sector. The Andhra Pradesh & Telangana Conferencing Facility is an example of a colossal Vidyo deployment at the state level where more than 1,200 Vidyo rooms have been deployed across Andhra Pradesh & Telangana’s 23 districts and 1,100 Mandals.

To learn more on the Andhra Pradesh & Telangana Conferencing Facility watch this video case study.

Andhra Pradesh Technology Services (APTS) launched the massive network that provides the State Secretariat in Hyderbad with a direct video conferencing connection to all 1007 district zones across the state, facilitating visual interaction between top level officials and field level personnel.

The national and state governments’ focus on ensuring digital workflows has driven large scale adoption of Vidyo’s technology across multiple departments, from State High Courts to the Department of Financial Services and Department of Education to Premier Government Technical and Management Colleges such as the Indian Institute of Technology (IITs) and Indian Institute of Management (IIMs).

Vidyo partnerships with top service providers like SIFY and Arkadin have also contributed significantly to Vidyo’s success in India. Most recently, our partnership with Airtel, India’s number one telecom provider, has allowed Vidyo to not only grow its footprint, but has given us the opportunity to act as a key thought leader in the video communication and collaboration arena.

Airtel and Vidyo Economic Times

Every month over the course of the next year, Vidyo and Airtel, in conjunction with the Economic Times will be presenting to customers and prospects on the value of video conferencing in business work flow. Listen to our first cooperated effort on the power and potential of video collaboration and watch our TV segment on ET Now: Empowering Enterprises.

But of course Vidyo’s versatile technology is permeating several industries across India! Powerful integrations in the financial services space, such as IndusInd, provided India with the first “face-to-face” online banking experience, and Reliance Mutual, a top Capital Asset Management company in India, also uses Vidyo to power their Video Chat function that allows distributors to connect with Reliance Mutual experts. Together these companies are driving interest in Vidyo across banking services throughout India!

IndusInd Mobile Video Banking

VidyoWorks powers Video Branch, a mobile and desktop-based banking service deployed across India. 

And keep your ear to the ground for new Vidyo applications in Healthcare – yet another vertical that is recognizing the immense benefits of real time video communication. Multiple VidyoWorks integrations are on the horizon that will boost the quality of care and promote better patient outcomes in various healthcare platforms across the country.

With a population of more than 1.25 billion people, almost 980 million mobile connections, the impending launch of 4G services nationwide and around 300 million Internet connections* – the Indian market is ready to embrace the next generation of video communication.

Sunny Rao is general manager of India and can be reached at sarao@vidyo.com

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*http://gadgets.ndtv.com/telecom/news/telephone-connections-in-india-cross-1-billion-mark-telecom-minister-712083

Vidyo Positioned as Leader in Gartner Magic Quadrant!

Vidyo Group Conference

Great news! Gartner issued their first Magic Quadrant for the topic of Group Video Systems and Vidyo was one of only three companies positioned in the critically important “Leaders” quadrant!* We see this as a tremendous acknowledgment of both Vidyo’s vision and Vidyo’s ability to execute. Read more about the report in our latest Gartner Newsletter!

According to Gartner, “The introduction of innovative new form factors, software infrastructure and cloud services is reshaping enterprise video collaboration. The following vendors offer potential for greater reach, scale and interoperability while addressing the most critical video user cases.”

Gartner goes on to say, “Group video systems primarily serve the need for high-quality video interaction across a range of meeting room sizes. In addition to one or more screens of video, these systems allow for content sharing, as well as integration with unified communications (UC) platforms. As participants join meetings from outside the conference room, these systems also accommodate desktop and mobile endpoint add-on while providing continuity of experience.”

We believe that being placed as a Leader in the Gartner Magic Quadrant is confirmation of Vidyo’s market momentum. Today customers of all sizes including those requiring extreme security are using Vidyo to visually connect their global teams, and customers, providing the highest level of collaboration tailored to the specific needs of each company.

The VidyoWorks™ platform is being selected by enterprise companies, financial services, telemedicine providers and government agencies and offers an innovative alternative to incumbent providers. Vidyo offers enterprise companies the best and most affordable way to connect and collaborate and as our customers tell us, ‘it just works.’

Don’t forget to learn more about the report in our latest Gartner Newsletter.

* Source: Gartner, Inc., Magic Quadrant for Group Video Systems, by Robert Mason and Tom Eagle, July 15, 2015

Required Disclaimer:
Gartner does not endorse any vendor, product or service depicted in its research publications, and does not advise technology users to select only those vendors with the highest ratings or other designation. Gartner research publications consist of the opinions of Gartner’s research organization and should not be construed as statements of fact. Gartner disclaims all warranties, expressed or implied, with respect to this research, including any warranties of merchantability or fitness for a particular purpose.

Look Out, Drone Stampede!

Vidyo Stampede Drone Slide

Well ok, not really, but this week Vidyo partner Stampede did announce that it is bringing drone-based video conferencing to life with Vidyo. How does it work? Drones connected to Vidyo endpoint software are able to bring live video feeds into a video conference, providing up-to-the minute bird’s eye-view content for those who need real-time visual information. Stampede’s new solution is a one-stop-shop for ProAV dealers – providing the hardware, software, training and consulting services needed for a complete drone deployment solution. See a video of the drone in action.

There is a lot of conversation around drones – but the novelty often overshadows their real-life applications for the enterprise and public sector. Drones can be used to bring eyes to situations more efficiently and easily. For example, helicopters are currently used to monitor and inspect oil pipelines and oil fields, which can rack up a cost of $1,500/ hour to operate, not including pilot or other personnel fees. A drone or unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) could bring closer observation than a traditional helicopter at a fraction of the price. An especially relevant use case emerging this week is the use of drones to spot and better understand the behavior of sharks offshore in Southern California.

Drones Landing PadThe Drones Have Landed at InfoComm 2015!

Vidyo is already working closely with police, EMTs, emergency responders and internal communications agencies to help them enhance their current communications and video conferencing capabilities with live images from drones. The VidyoWorksTM software platform affords the flexibility to integrate with off-the-shelf video-enabled devices like drones, medical telemetry equipment, and smart glasses, and connect quality video streams over wireless Internet connections with a diverse set of endpoints.

This announcement coincides with InfoComm 2015, where Stampede and Vidyo are showcasing the solution at the Stampede Unmanned Vehicle University Drone Pavilion (#7042). Vidyo is committed to supporting its many partners at InfoComm2015 including Stampede, Ricoh (#4043) and Barco (#2529).

See a video of the drone in action and additional photos below!

Drone In Flight - VidyoUncaged Drone Stops by the Vidyo Table

Drone Cage InfoCommThe Drone Cage

Empowering Patients with Video-Enabled Telemedicine Technologies

Open-Tele-Patient-Logo

Healthcare systems globally are facing similar issues – how to ensure delivery of high quality care despite rising demand and limited resources. As a result, telemedicine, with its ability to expand access to care and increase utilization of physicians, is gaining support and adoption around the world.

In fact, a new research report found that the global market for telemedicine technologies stood at $17.8B in 2014 is expected to expand at a compound annual growth rate of 18.4 percent by 2020, fueled by a shortage of physicians in rural and remote areas, the high prevalence of chronic diseases, growing elderly populations, increasing numbers of smartphone users and the need for improved quality services.1

Remote Patient Monitoring, one of many telemedicine applications in use today, allows care providers to monitor patients outside of clinical settings, in the home or elsewhere, using technology that can collect, store and share health data in real time. Patients with chronic diseases, patients in rural areas with conditions requiring specialists or patients with limited mobility are key candidates for Remote Patient Monitoring.

Open-Tele-Patient-Engagement

The OpenTele platform for Remote Patient Monitoring system provides these services and more. With the integration of VidyoWorksTM, OpenTele’s platform can facilitate video interactions between clinicians and patients while simultaneously collecting patient data. This seemingly small, additional capability, however, has led to powerful results.

Vidyo’s dynamic adaptation technology, which provides stable, maximum quality video communication over Wi-Fi and cellular connected clients, allows care providers to perform immediate and comprehensive reviews of a patient’s performance, improving outcomes and peace of mind for patients. Together with Vidyo, OpenTele is able to support the weakest and most vulnerable patients, those that might be too weak or ill to manage their own monitoring system due to their medical condition.

Open-Tele-Portal

(Screenshot of the OpenTele Platform for Physicians and Nurses)

Extending monitoring and diagnostic abilities to patients who normally would not be able to participate in such a program is central to ensuring the health of the population and sustaining our healthcare systems. In Denmark, adoption of telemedicine applications like OpenTele’s has led to lowered hospital re-admission rates, increased patient satisfaction and provided cost savings to providers and patients due to reduced complications. Patients are empowered, working daily to improve their performance and better manage their condition. In fact, OpenTele’s ability to reduce hospital re-admission rates has been so successful that the platform has been adopted as a national Danish standard for Remote Patient Monitoring.

With the whole Danish Nation as a committed reference case, OpenTeleHealth continues to expand its platform globally, bringing the advantages of remote patient monitoring and Vidyo-enabled communication to the global market.

Resources:

  1. http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/global-telemedicine-market-outlook-2015-2020-for-the-17-billion-industry-with-mckesson-philips-healthcare-ge-healthcare-and-cerner-dominating-504372191.html