Unified Communications (UC) is the incorporation of real-time communication services like chatting, telephony, video chatting, data sharing, call control and speech recognition with non-real-time communication services, e.g., unified messaging like email, texting, integrated voicemail, and fax. UC is not a simple, singular product; rather, it is the process by which a set of these products provide a consistent unified user interface and user experience across various device and media platforms. UC incorporates a multitude of types of communication exchanged on the TCP/IP network to encompass other types of communications like IPTV and Digital Signage Communications. These communications methods are incorporated into a larger network of communications deployment and can be sent to an individual or broadcast to many clients. UC allows a user, for example, to receive a standard voicemail message and access the message via email or text message. Unlike unified messaging, UC allows a user to access messaging in real-time or at a later time. Unified messaging only allows a user to check converted messages at a later time.

 
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Latest Headlines

Polycom abandons Mitel deal as Siris Capital bids $2B for the company

Polycom has struck a deal to be acquired by private-equity firm Siris Capital for $2 billion, abandoning its previously announced agreement with Mitel.

Foster rejoins MegaPath to lead business services

MegaPath has named Dan Foster its president of business markets, marking the return of one of the company's leaders as it looks to gain more share in the unified communications market segment.

Level 3 says enterprises continue to run hybrid TDM/IP-based voice networks

Level 3 Communications may be one of the leading advocates of IP-based voice services, but the reality for many of its larger enterprise customers is they are not ready to totally throw out their TDM-based services or infrastructure.

8X8, Vonage take hold of UCaaS market, says research firm

8X8 is holding its status as the unified communications as a service (UCaaS) market through its dominant position with small businesses and a growing presence in medium and large businesses. "8x8 maintains its leadership due to its large installed base of UCaaS seats, financial position and continued execution on its market strategy," said Diane Myers, senior research director for VoIP, UC and IMS at IHS Technology.

QoS, security are enterprises' key concerns in adopting cloud services, says research firm

While it's clear that enterprises see value in cloud-based services, concerns over QoS guarantees and security remain top of mind. A new IHS study revealed that the majority of businesses they surveyed will put some applications in the cloud while keeping other mission critical pieces on their own premises.

Allstream and eLoyalty serve up cloud-based UC services between Canada, United States

Canada-based business provider Allstream, which is in the process of being acquired by Zayo, is already moving to penetrate new business service opportunities in the United States by introducing cross-border service for its Hosted Collaboration Solution.

Consolidated serves up UC, cloud services for Sacramento, Dallas business customers

Consolidated Communications is taking a larger bite out of the cloud services market with a series of new cloud offerings that it will initially offer to businesses that reside in its Sacramento, Calif., and Dallas metro markets.

Vonage says there's still 85% of the SMB market left to penetrate with cloud services

While other VoIP and cloud providers are anxious to move up markets into larger business accounts, Vonage maintains there's plenty of the small to medium business (SMB) market that has not been penetrated yet.

XO adds concierge feature to hosted PBX service

XO Communications is helping its business customers focus more on their fundamental strengths by launching "HPBX Concierge," a "touch-free" feature for its Hosted PBX service.

Level 3 incorporates collaboration services into cloud ecosystem

Level 3 Communications has added unified communications and collaboration (UC&C) into its Cloud Connect ecosystem, giving its enterprise customers another cloud service option.