When we think of disruptive, cutting edge technology terms such as mobile, cloud, social media, etc. usually own the conversation. Can we now add video conferencing to that list?
Traditional tools like email, phone, and face-to-face meetings are still the most common ways for businesses to communicate and collaborate. Nonetheless, in a business world now defined by a distributed workforce, today’s organizations are looking to implement next-generation collaboration tools that help drive productivity. Innovative and scalable HD videowall solutions provide a workforce with a high level of engagement. Technologies such as VoIP, WebRTC and software-based solutions can be used to enable face-to-face business meetings without leaving your desk.
But what about when a more intimate or personal business meeting is warranted? Traditional tools such as email and phone are cost effective and accessible, but fall short of providing a rich, immersive environment for collaboration and information sharing. While in-person, face-to-face meetings are considered more effective for communicating and relationship building, they are not always feasible from a time and budget standpoint.
According to data revealed by CNN, the overall 2012 global business travel spend was estimated at more than $1 trillion. Also take into consideration business travel is shifting from the United States and Europe to the more distant Asia Pacific (APAC) region. In 2011 APAC owned 35 percent of the total world business travel spend but that number is predicted to jump to 43 percent by 2016.
Next-generation video conferencing and display technology can deliver an immersive experience that rivals being there in person and avoids the expense and downtime of travel. The emergence of highly accessible features such as HD video, surround sound, touchscreen capabilities, hand-motion sensors and display scalability, deliver a truly immersive experience. Meeting participants, whether in room or remote can share presentations, documents, video and multi-media in a truly seamless manner.
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With highly versatile collaboration videowalls, a large digital canvas is available to simultaneously display multiple windows and media types. The flexibility allows it to meet the needs of a broad range of use models from the small team meeting to a CEO’s meeting with board members around the world. The value of being able to experience and interact with remote constituents combined with the time and dollar savings that video conferencing provides via travel reduction has not only lifted the profile of next-generation video conferencing, it has made it a strategic business productivity tool.
In fact industry research shows a steady increase in the video conferencing market. Market research firm Infonetics reported the global enterprise video conferencing and telepresence revenue grew 10 percent in Q4 2012, and this on top of double digit growth the quarter before. Another research firm, TechNavio forecast the video conferencing market in the United States to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of more than 27 percent over the period 2011-2015.
Next-generation video conferencing solutions enable global businesses to facilitate a remote collaboration experience that feels like an in-person meeting. It also leaves a smaller environmental footprint than business air travel. Billions of dollars in tech development, market momentum and corporate spending in the area have proven that next-generation video conferencing has evolved into a critical business productivity driver, and has become a competitive differentiator for leading global businesses.