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UC blogs: Industry leaders collaborate on open WebRTC video codec

In this week's blogs, UC analysts discuss the Alliance for Open Media's plan for an open WebRTC video codec, and BlackBerry's EMM market position.

Tsahi Levent-Levi, consultant and founder of BlogGeek.me, discusses the launch of the Alliance for Open Media,...

which is focused on the development of next-generation media formats and codecs. According to Levent-Levi, this new industry group adds to the brewing WebRTC video codec war that will determine what will be the video codec standard for WebRTC.

The group's first project will focus on creating an open, royalty-free video codec based on the contributions of its seven members: Cisco, Microsoft, Amazon, Google, Mozilla, Intel and Netflix. Levent-Levi writes that creating a royalty-free codec is challenging, as the codec cannot infringe on the various patent licenses for video codecs like H.264 that require users to pay royalties. 

Levent-Levi believes the codec that the Alliance for Open Media plans to develop will use Google's VP9 codec as a baseline, because Microsoft plans to support VP9 in its new Microsoft Edge Web browser. Codecs that other members are developing, such as Cisco's Thor and Mozilla's Daala, may use be used in combination with VP9 to develop a new codec.

Read more about the requirements a next-generation WebRTC video codec will need.

BlackBerry acquisition strengthens place in EMM market

Ronald Gruia, analyst at Frost & Sullivan, based in Mountain View, Calif., discusses BlackBerry's $425 million acquisition of enterprise mobility management (EMM) provider Good Technology. Gruia writes that Good Technology is a leading player in the EMM market, and the acquisition greatly boosts BlackBerry's software portfolio. BlackBerry has been making a lot of acquisitions in the mobile space, buying companies such as WatchDox and Secusmart for secure file sharing, voice and alert messaging, he writes.

With the acquisition of Good Technology, BlackBerry can better support BYOD and other enterprise mobility initiatives with a strong offering of cross-platform EMM services, Gruia writes. The acquisition gives BlackBerry a user base of 6,200 enterprises, with vertical markets ranging from healthcare to government. Two-thirds of users are on Apple iOS devices, he writes.

Gruia writes the acquisition indicates that BlackBerry is moving away from being device-focused and toward being software- and service-focused, adding that BlackBerry must continue to focus on its services, as competition in the EMM market is intense.

Read more about how the acquisition addresses a security pain point for EMM.

Business continuity for collaboration needs improvement

Stephanie Balaouras, analyst at Forrester Research Inc., based in Cambridge, Mass., writes about the importance of business continuity for communication and collaboration during events like natural disasters. She writes that in 2005, Hurricane Katrina taught the importance of maintaining communication and collaboration in hospitals and government offices to prevent further death and loss. She writes that the response to Superstorm Sandy in 2012 showed better preparedness, but business continuity for communication and collaboration is still a significant challenge, and the country still has room for improvement.

Balaouras writes that many business continuity planners fail to account for crises that arise beyond the initial disaster that can result in the loss of critical communication infrastructure. As organizations like hospitals become increasingly dependent on complex communication and collaboration technology, business continuity must be a priority for unexpected events, such as natural disasters.

Read more about how to compare your organization's business continuity plans to others across the industry.

Next Steps

Preparing for a WebRTC video codec standard

What to do when your EMM vendor is acquired

UCaaS has built-in business continuity

Dig Deeper on Collaborative Applications

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