Feeds

UC interoperability still a bad joke: Gartner

Analyst blasts vendors for dumping problems on VARs, crimping BYOD

Build a business case: developing custom apps

Unified Communications systems still don’t play together nicely, and Ken Agreess, a Research Director with Gartner IT Professionals Research, says vendors’ attitudes of asking value-added resellers to fix problems they create is a “failure”.

Agress made his assessment in a blog post penned after attending the Enterprise Connect event (formerly VoiceCon) in the USA.

A session at the event titled “Are we in a post-PBX era” raised Agress’ ire, as vendors on the panel “ … all settled on a relatively common statement – the most critical part of interoperability that enterprises will be leveraging in the near future is their value-added reseller. Rather than strong standards for signaling and media, the VAR will become more of a systems integrator that ties these systems together. There were somewhat obligatory noises about SIP, the UCIF, or similar standards, but the message I took away from the session was ‘interoperability will continue to be hard and enterprises shouldn’t expect the vendors to address this directly.’”

Agress goes on to argue that “Enterprises need the flexibility of these platforms to meet the growing demand for “bring your own device” approaches to mobility, leveraging cloud-based services effectively, and connecting directly to business partners, clients, suppliers or other third parties.

But what the ‘Interoperability comes through your VAR’ answer means is that we shouldn’t expect significant developments that make such environments truly possible. Since each vendor’s focus will be on their products, their clients, their services, and their communications channels, how can an enterprise reasonably expect to connect to a carrier service, cloud provider, or external entity that uses solutions from a different vendor?”

“This is ludicrous,”Agress says, especially given that “SIP was approved in 2000 with the goal of providing a standard for signaling in an IMS infrastructure. Standard codecs for voice and video are available for use. SIMPLE and XMPP offer the means needed to support presence and instant messaging. Yet in 2012 we’re still here discussing how hard interoperability is, particularly among some of the largest vendors in the industry.”

Agress feels that vendors are dragging the chain out of sloth, greed, and a desire to replace the PBXs they sold in the past. But he thinks PBC replacement is a poor idea, as UC should “be able to consume cloud services, connect to a wide array of devices and systems, and offer its services to applications that allow communications to become embedded in those applications that support business processes and workflows.”

Would-be UC buyers, if there are any left after Agress’ blast, should he says insist on interoperability and only buy from those who can deliver it. The laggards will eventually get the message.

And the VARs? They’ll still be needed, he says, as these solutions don’t knit themselves together. ®

Boost IT visibility and business value

More from The Register

next story
Sysadmin Day 2014: Quick, there's still time to get the beers in
He walked over the broken glass, killed the thugs... and er... reconnected the cables*
Auntie remains MYSTIFIED by that weekend BBC iPlayer and website outage
Still doing 'forensics' on the caching layer – Beeb digi wonk
SHOCK and AWS: The fall of Amazon's deflationary cloud
Just as Jeff Bezos did to books and CDs, Amazon's rivals are now doing to it
VVOL update: Are any vendors NOT leaping into bed with VMware?
It's not yet been released but everyone thinks it's the dog's danglies
BlackBerry: Toss the server, mate... BES is in the CLOUD now
BlackBerry Enterprise Services takes aim at SMEs - but there's a catch
The triumph of VVOL: Everyone's jumping into bed with VMware
'Bandwagon'? Yes, we're on it and so what, say big dogs
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
The Essential Guide to IT Transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIO's automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Build a business case: developing custom apps
Learn how to maximize the value of custom applications by accelerating and simplifying their development.