Siemens Enterprise Communications is building on OpenScape UC Server 2010--its March release of a unified communications portfolio for the data center and virtualized environments--with a set of collaboration, mobility and video tools.
OpenScape UC Suite 2011 includes an enterprise-grade Web conferencing solution called OpenScape Web Collaboration, a system for delivering packaged and custom applications to OpenStage phones called OpenScape PhoneApps, videoconferencing enhancements called OpenScape Video and an expanded range of mobile collaboration clients called OpenScape Mobility. Siemens has also announced it is acquiring FastViewer GmbH & Co. KG and will incorporate its Web conferencing, desktop sharing and e-collaboration tools with the Web collaboration component of the 2011 edition.
The new iteration of the OpenScape suite continues to address customers' top concerns, says Siemens. According to Frost & Sullivan data, customers are focusing on audio, Web and IP because of the real cost savings available, as well as the collaboration benefits. There are a variety of point solutions that compete with Siemens' offerings, but the company brings its extensive enterprise experience to offer enterprise-grade solutions that are secure and scalable.
"With this release, Siemens is really emphasizing the ROI issue," says Melanie Turek, industry director, enterprise communications, at Frost & Sullivan. "Making the software easy to deploy and setting an attractive price point, and keeping it open so that companies don't need to rip and replace and can integrate other apps and end devices as needed, is really key."
Turek says that for many companies, the value of UC can be found in a hierarchy of return, similar to psychologist Abraham Maslow's hierarchy of needs. Just as people must have certain certain basic needs (hunger, thirst, shelter) met before they can enjoy more advanced rights (freedom, education, self-actualization), companies must ensure first and foremost that the technology they deploy is cost-effective and utilitarian. Once that basic requirement is met, they can start looking for ways to leverage technology for more advanced benefits, including improved productivity and revenue acceleration.