Buyer's Guide

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Find the UCaaS providers and products that meet your needs

The market for UCaaS providers can be confusing, as it consists of hosted versions of on-premises products that have been redesigned for the cloud, as well as virtualized products hosted in third-party data centers.

Introduction

Unified communications as a service, or UCaaS, has emerged as a way for businesses of all sizes to streamline communications, enhance productivity and manage costs. As a cloud-based alternative to traditional on-premises UC deployments, UCaaS has evolved to provide organizations with several collaboration and telephony features.

Instead of IT departments managing the UC platform on site, a UCaaS infrastructure is outsourced to a service provider's data center, or offered in a public or private cloud environment. Features such as instant messaging, desktop sharing and presence are provided over an IP network. UCaaS generally follows the software-as-a-service model, where businesses only pay for services they use.

Although variations of UCaaS have been in the market for several years, starting with basic voice over IP, organizations are starting to realize the many benefits this technology offers for today's decentralized workforces. UCaaS delivers a consistent user experience that lets users share information across all types of devices and network environments. It also can be integrated with other cloud-based services, including customer relationship management systems and other third-party apps.

This guide will help you determine if your organization could benefit from UCaaS and detail the factors you should consider before making a purchase. We also compare the leading UCaaS providers in the market, examining how they address company size, technical support and their contact-center capabilities. Our individual product overviews provide more in-depth information to help you choose the product that best meets your needs.

1What is?-

The evolution of UCaaS

Although many companies have been reluctant to move to cloud-based unified communications, UCaaS is proving to be beneficial to companies' budgets and their overall communications infrastructure.

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UC as a service emerging as a viable deployment model

Telephony expert Jon Arnold examines the emergence of UC in the cloud and discusses how its evolution is part of a growing shift toward cloud-based services for the enterprise. Continue Reading

2Do I need?-

Is cloud-based UC right for your organization?

UC as a service provides the many benefits of the software-as-a-service model, including scalability, reliability and performance, as well as enhanced agility and improved user productivity.

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Three business benefits of the cloud offered by UCaaS

Unified communications as a service can take advantage of some significant cloud business benefits, including improved company agility, employee productivity and cost control. Continue Reading

3How to buy-

Selecting the right cloud-based UC product

The move to cloud-based UC requires a number of careful considerations. Choosing one deployment model over another can greatly affect your business.

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Evaluating UCaaS providers with three key criteria

When evaluating UCaaS providers and cloud-based products, three important criteria to consider include flexibility, stability and the variety of deployment models offered. Continue Reading

4Which should I buy?-

What the leading UCaaS providers offer

Take a look at the top UCaaS providers, their cloud products and how they might meet your business needs.

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Comparing the top UC cloud products and providers

Before you buy UC cloud-based products, consider these four key criteria: your business size, provider tech support, third-party app integration and contact center capabilities. Continue Reading

5Top product overviews-

The leading UCaaS vendors

Take an in-depth look at the top UCaaS products and services offered today, as well as the factors that differentiate them from one another.

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Avaya cloud UC product overview: IP Office, OnAvaya and Avaya UCaaS

Flexible licensing and contact-center capabilities are just some of the strengths of Avaya cloud UC products, which include IP Office, OnAvaya and Avaya UCaaS. Continue Reading

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Cisco HCS: UC as a service product overview

Cisco HCS cloud unified communications system integrates with existing collaboration and presence technology, like Cisco Presence and Instant Messaging Server. Continue Reading

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Interactive Intelligence PureCloud: UCaaS product overview

The Interactive Intelligence PureCloud platform provides a cloud-based suite of communications, collaboration and contact-center applications aimed at organizations of all sizes. Continue Reading

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Mitel MiCloud: UC as a service product overview

With features such as contact center support and integration with Salesforce, the Mitel MiCloud unified communications system is suitable for small and large organizations. Continue Reading

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Microsoft Skype for Business Online: UCaaS product overview

As a cloud-based product, Skype for Business Online continues to evolve into a full-fledged unified communications service, with calling, conferencing and collaboration features. Continue Reading

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NEC Univerge Blue: UC as a service product overview

Univerge Blue's cloud-based communications include extensive mobility features and call-center capabilities. The UCaaS product also offers robust security settings. Continue Reading

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VIPedge: Toshiba cloud UC service product overview

VIPedge, the Toshiba cloud UC system, implements unified communications as a service with strong support help and integration with existing Toshiba IP PBX units. Continue Reading

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ShoreTel Connect CLOUD: UC as a service product overview

ShoreTel Connect CLOUD provides several software and hardware components, including a collaboration suite, mobility app, IP phones and contact-center capabilities. Continue Reading

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Unify Circuit: UC as a service product overview

The Unify Circuit platform provides a single cloud-based service that addresses organizations' cross-platform team collaboration and communication needs. Continue Reading

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