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Both unified communications as a service and communications platform as a service are better than on-premises alternatives...
for internal and external collaboration. Communications platform as a service, or CPaaS, is generally better at collaboration than unified communications as a service, or UCaaS. But, when pitting UCaaS vs. CPaaS, you need to weigh other factors.
Any cloud communications-as-a-service system -- whether it's a UCaaS or CPaaS platform -- will usually be better than on-premises options for external communications, because the cloud itself resides outside corporate premises. The cloud-based system naturally communicates across network boundaries.
At times, though, cloud-based systems may falter for internal communications, especially if the network or IT is highly restrictive. If this is the case, an on-premises approach is probably a better option. But, with on-premises networks, external communications can be challenging.
In general, internal communications can work better with UC services, whether it's a UCaaS platform or on premises. UC is designed, developed and deployed to handle internal communications.
External communications is trickier because it doesn't always lend itself to a single, scripted scenario that can be implemented in different companies and industries. A doctor consultation, for example, is different than customer service at a bank, which is different than selling travel deals to customers.
With CPaaS, you can implement this broader range of use cases and integrate them better into the necessary business processes. While a UCaaS platform may fit as well, it will be hard to reach the same seamless experience.
Many UCaaS platform vendors are taking on the UCaaS vs. CPaaS debate by offering APIs and CPaaS platforms. These offerings are geared toward external communication scenarios, enabling their UCaaS customers to specify, implement and deliver the experiences and business processes they need without going to an external CPaaS vendor.
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Breaking down the basics of UCaaS platforms
The impact of APIs on the corporate network
Forecasting the future of APIs and CPaaS