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What do you need to know before adopting video as a service?

What should you know about video as a service before you deploy? Video expert Stephen Campbell explains how it integrates with existing endpoints and how to choose a provider.

Video as a service (VaaS) is an attractive option for organizations looking to simplify their video conferencing infrastructure or deploy a low-cost video conferencing service. But before they deploy it, organizations should know how to choose the right VaaS provider and keep VaaS secure. Video expert Stephen K. Campbell explains what to know before deploying VaaS.

Can video as a service integrate with an on-premises infrastructure?

Stephen K. Campbell: Cloud-based video-as-a-service products may be used standalone or in conjunction with existing on-premises video conferencing equipment. For organizations with existing video infrastructure, VaaS can be used to grow a system without requiring a heavy capital investment. For example, when an acquisition is made, a company could video-enable the newly acquired organization to facilitate the integration process. VaaS could also be used to rapidly scale up a video deployment if [a] capital budget is not available or as a team tool when partnering with an external contractor. VaaS offerings typically integrate easily with existing environments for video as well as other commonly used tools.

Learn more about the VaaS providers who focus on interoperability with on-premises endpoints.

Is video as a service secure?

Campbell: Security is an important consideration when buying any type of cloud-based service, including video as a service. There are a number of risks to consider: from the security of the network connection, to the security of the video conference sessions, to the risk of malware attacks on equipment or websites operated by the VaaS provider. Mitigating these risks depends on many factors, and it is impossible to secure VaaS with 100% certainty. However, it is highly likely that VaaS will be just as secure, or more secure, than video services operated in-house.

VaaS providers will have specific expertise in their equipment, communication protocols and the network aspects of cloud computing. They will also have dedicated resources that focus solely on operating and securing their equipment and applications. While comparing security of VaaS to in-house capabilities, consider if your business will have the expertise and committed manpower to secure the video network or if the resources will be spread across a range of services. For many businesses, especially small and medium-sized businesses, the answer will likely be that resources are spread thin.

Learn more about the measures that enterprises can take to increase VaaS security.

What should you look for in a VaaS provider?

Campbell: The typical video-as-a-service customer will have in-house video endpoints in meeting rooms in addition to mobile clients. VaaS providers will usually be able to provide connectivity to meetings via a browser client for remote workers and non-company parties such as interview candidates. VaaS providers may be given the primary video support role or they may supplement an in-house team. Even if video support is totally outsourced, there will need to be some on-premises resources at each location to assist with testing and to resolve local facility issues.

VaaS providers will typically have a network testing capability, the ability to generate trouble tickets with the network organization, the endpoint manufacturer or maintenance provider, facilities, and related organizations. Some VaaS providers also offer equipment and financing services, so there is a wide range of services to consider.

Learn what questions you should ask when evaluating VaaS providers.

Next Steps

Video as a service offers users greater flexibility

Why you should move video conferencing to the cloud

This was last published in March 2015

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