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Enterprise Connect 2017 conference coverage

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Cloud unified communications carrying more clout

The cloud casts wide influence across unified communications. Applications, including communication APIs, team messaging and video collaboration, now fall firmly under the cloud unified communications umbrella.

"Everything's moving to cloud," said Irwin Lazar, a UC analyst at Nemertes Research, based in Mokena, Ill. "We see big, big shifts toward cloud unified communications."

Small and medium businesses, in particular, are helping fuel cloud unified communications trends. Web and video conferencing are applications now commonly found in the cloud. But "voice is still a laggard in terms of cloud adoption," Lazar said.

Hybrid is a migration step; it's not an end state. Longer term, people will go past hybrid and go to pure cloud.
Irwin Lazaranalyst at Nemertes Research

At the same time, larger companies are looking to connect cloud applications -- like team chat and web conferencing -- with their existing on-premises infrastructure. In these hybrid setups, Lazar said, organizations should look to leverage cloud where they need it.   

For instance, companies could use cloud unified communications in new or remote offices where they don't want to install infrastructure. The cloud applications could communicate with legacy infrastructure that's not fully depreciated yet. But hybrid systems can also pose certain challenges, such as additional performance management.

"Hybrid is a migration step; it's not an end state," Lazar said. "Longer term, people will go past hybrid and go to pure cloud."

In the video above, Lazar discussed cloud unified communications, hybrid systems and cloud-based video adoption at Enterprise Connect 2017.

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Enterprise Connect 2017 conference coverage

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