SOURCE: Polycom, Inc.

Polycom, Inc.

January 18, 2012 00:01 ET

Polycom Announces Cloud Strategy to Enable Service Providers to Fast-Track Delivery of Video-as-a-Service and Accelerate the Adoption of Video Collaboration Among SMBs and Enterprises

Polycom® RealPresence™ Cloud, Powered by RealPresence™ Platform, Provides Service Providers a Fully Managed Wholesale Video Collaboration Service to Accelerate Time-to-Market With Subscription-Based Offerings

PLEASANTON, CA--(Marketwire - Jan 18, 2012) - Polycom, Inc. (NASDAQ: PLCM), the global leader in standards-based unified communications (UC), today detailed its strategy to enable service providers to offer cloud-delivered, Video-as-a-Service (VaaS) solutions to its customers. As part of today's announcement, Polycom is unveiling Polycom® RealPresence™ Cloud, a wholesale, carrier-ready offering to enable service providers to quickly bring to market VaaS offerings. RealPresence Cloud solutions are designed specifically for service providers to equip them with the carrier-grade infrastructure, endpoints, and services they need to offer businesses of all sizes subscription-based solutions for video collaboration. The new offering for service providers is designed to accelerate the penetration and adoption of Polycom video collaboration solutions among SMBs (small to medium sized businesses) and enterprises who want either a hybrid solution of both premises-based video collaboration solutions and video on demand, or a pure VaaS solution.

Polycom RealPresence Cloud solutions compress the time-to-market and time-to-revenue for service providers to deliver VaaS solutions. Powered by the Polycom RealPresence Platform, the most complete and interoperable solution for universal video collaboration, RealPresence Cloud provides the carrier-grade scalability, reliability, availability, and security required for service providers to offer VaaS to SMBs and enterprises. RealPresence Cloud solutions encompass a fully managed multipoint video service that supports a multitude of connectivity options between standards-based room, mobile, PC, and Web-based endpoints, as well as Microsoft® Lync™ 2010, IBM Sametime®, and endpoints supporting the non-standard TIP protocol. Service providers can leverage Polycom RealPresence Cloud solutions to offer their customers a true business-to-business VaaS solution without having to fully integrate and support the core infrastructure on-premises. This solution leverages the Polycom RealPresence Network (formerly the Halo®/HVEN network acquired from HP in 2011) to allow service providers to fast-track their capability to deliver video from the cloud.

Polycom RealPresence Platform Powers Video Clouds from China Unicom and Airtel
Polycom will continue to work closely with service providers to develop VaaS offerings for a range of business and delivery models from on-premises to hosted to managed services. Several carriers around the world are currently using the RealPresence Platform as the enabler for VaaS solutions. For example, China Unicom has created one of the largest video clouds in the world, powered by the RealPresence Platform, which enables the delivery of VaaS to more than 10,000 business and government organizations throughout China. The RealPresence Platform provides the scalability, reliability, and interoperability that enable China Unicom's video cloud to interconnect approximately 100,000 endpoints (and growing) from 10 different vendors. Another example, Airtel, a leading service provider in India, is also using the RealPresence Platform to deliver VaaS solutions to SMBs and enterprises throughout India. These solutions provide a differentiated offering for both companies and are helping to drive further adoption of video collaboration throughout China and India.

Wainhouse Research predicts the five-year compound annual growth rate for the hosted and managed UC market worldwide is forecast to be 30.7 percent with revenues of approximately $5 billion in 20151, further expanding Polycom's total addressable market. Polycom's cloud strategy builds on the company's goal to make video collaboration ubiquitous and is a key proof point of Polycom's recently announced software strategy.

"Polycom RealPresence Cloud is a key component to our vision of making video collaboration ubiquitous. Service providers are critical partners to drive video collaboration growth through VaaS offerings, which will dramatically lower the up-front investment for SMBs and enterprises, enabling them to reap the benefits of video collaboration," said Andy Miller, President and CEO, Polycom. "We want to make it as easy as possible for service providers to augment their existing offerings with video collaboration solutions. To that end, we're removing the barriers to entry with our wholesale cloud offerings and other delivery options that meet service provider requirements related to investment, management, and operations, thereby enabling our partners to get to market faster and generate new revenue more quickly. Our go-to-market objective is clear: we will be an enabler of cloud services, partnering with service providers and, in-time, solutions providers, and unlike competitors, we will not compete with service providers or offer a retail service direct to end users."

"As the demand for video collaboration continues to grow, cloud-delivered video offerings will be a key contributor to this growth. Many SMBs and enterprises will find Video-as-a-Service offerings attractive due to their flexibility, scalability and cost savings," said Rich Costello, IDC senior research analyst. "Polycom's cloud strategy is compelling, as it provides an accelerated path to market for cloud-delivered video, and gives services providers the robust infrastructure, scalability, and interoperability needed to deploy wide-scale video clouds and deliver compelling VaaS solutions to customers."

"Video Infrastructure as a Service dramatically reduces the cost of supporting multi-party conferencing. It will become a prerequisite for the support of pervasive video in the enterprise, for example in unified communications deployments," according to Scott Morrison, managing vice president, Gartner, Inc.

Polycom Vision: Make Video Collaboration Ubiquitous through Multiple Routes to New and Expanding Markets
Polycom believes that the most effective and productive way to collaborate is by seeing people face-to-face. Video collaboration brings people face-to-face to increase productivity and, in addition, provides a great solution for business continuity as there are many obstacles that prevent people from physically being together: weather conditions, natural disasters, epidemics, and a range of unpredictable conditions and events that simply prevent people from meeting in-person. Polycom's goal is to make it possible for everyone to use face-to-face video collaboration as their preferred method of communicating -- easily, reliably, and securely -- no matter where they are and regardless of network, carrier, protocol, application, or device. The company is making that possible through multiple routes to market:

  • Cloud-based delivery of Video-as-a-Service solution from service providers - With enterprise spending on cloud infrastructure and services rapidly growing, and the technology and standards maturing, the "video cloud" is set to explode in 2012. Polycom RealPresence Cloud will enable service providers to quickly bring to market VaaS offerings and should help drive new and differentiated business models, along with significant incremental video collaboration usage across SMBs and enterprises.

  • Software delivery to mobile devices - Today, more than a seventh of the human population teleworks2, and most are remote or mobile at least some of the time. Polycom's mobility solution is Polycom® RealPresence™ Mobile, a free-to-download software solution that extends the enterprise-grade video collaboration capabilities of the Polycom RealPresence Platform beyond the conference room, office, and firewall to mobile tablets, enabling video usage anywhere.

  • On-premises delivery - The Polycom RealPresence Platform integrates with hundreds of business, UC, and social networking applications, as well as core networking and security infrastructure, to meet today's enterprise and service provider on-premises video collaboration needs and to flexibly support expansion to mobile and social applications and private cloud delivery.

  • Web-based delivery to social apps - Social apps, now moving rapidly into business, are another new high-growth market for video collaboration: By 2015, the number of people participating in web-based video chats is forecast to grow 14-fold to more than 140 million, and they are expected to make 11 billion video chat calls that year.3 Polycom® RealPresence™ Social solutions take video collaboration one more step away from premises-based systems and specialized endpoints, even beyond mobile devices, to enable Web access to video collaboration, independently of the device.

  • Embedded delivery on industry-leading devices (laptops, desktops, tablets) - Polycom video collaboration software will be embedded in industry leading devices, enabling users to quickly launch Polycom RealPresence video collaboration solutions right from their favorite devices.

Open Standards and Interoperability: Polycom® RealPresence Video and OVCC
The ability to achieve video ubiquity also requires open standards and interoperability, which does not lie within the power of any one customer, equipment manufacturer, service provider, or standards body to solve. It takes a concerted effort by the industry to solve this problem. Polycom's approach is to use open standards to orchestrate interoperability across all of the elements in a communications environment, including multiple solutions, vendors, networks, and connection protocols. This approach is three-part: platform and endpoints plus ecosystem.

The Polycom RealPresence Platform provides an open standards-based foundation for integrating the diverse UC applications and infrastructure in most enterprise environments -- from video endpoints to mobile devices to UC communications infrastructure from Microsoft, IBM, BroadSoft, Juniper, and Siemens, to name a few. In the interest of driving video ubiquity, the RealPresence Platform also interoperates with some proprietary systems, such as Cisco Telepresence products that use the TIP protocol. In addition, the RealPresence Platform, which powers Polycom RealPresence Cloud solutions, delivers the industry's only true carrier-grade reliability and scale, supporting up to 75,000 device registrations and 25,000 concurrent sessions.

In addition to the infrastructure foundation and interoperability hub provided by the RealPresence Platform, Polycom is also active in helping develop the commercial and technical solutions necessary to ensure interoperability across a global partner ecosystem. In June 2011, Polycom partnered with leading global telecommunications solution and service providers from around the world to unleash broader visual communications adoption by enabling interoperability and global business-to-business (B2B) connectivity for telepresence and video conferencing. The Open Visual Communications Consortium™ (OVCC™) organization was incorporated in August 2011, of which Polycom was a founding member. Currently, there are 16 OVCC members whose mission is to develop and support a ubiquitous video marketplace by establishing secure, quality-assured, and video-capable interconnections between service providers. Service enablement across the OVCC organization is expected to become commercially available in mid-2012.

"We believe that video as a service from the cloud will be a true game-changer. Delivering video as a service will make it possible for anyone to connect and collaborate face-to-face with anyone as easily as we text or tweet today," said Andrew McFadzen, President, OVCC. "Making this happen, however, requires that the UC and telco industries come together to solve the underlying interoperability challenges of delivering video across the assets of multiple carriers and video networks. Polycom, along with many of the leading telecommunications solution and service providers, has been working to address this and the result will be the opening of an open video cloud in 2012."

Polycom RealPresence Cloud offerings are available now with limited availability for qualified service providers.

About Polycom
Polycom is the global leader in standards-based unified communications (UC) solutions for telepresence, video, and voice, powered by the Polycom RealPresence platform. The RealPresence platform interoperates with the broadest range of business, mobile and social applications and devices. More than 400,000 organizations trust Polycom solutions to collaborate and meet face to face from any location for more productive and effective engagement with colleagues, partners, customers and prospects. Polycom, together with its broad partner ecosystem, provides customers with the best TCO, scalability, and security -- on-premises, hosted or cloud delivered. Visit or connect with Polycom on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn.

1 Wainhouse Research, "2011 Worldwide Hosted/Managed Unified Communications Services Forecast". September 2011, RE-UCSF11-WW. Note: Total Worldwide Hosted and Managed UC Services Forecast 2011-2015 (includes voice and video, but does not include network costs).
2 IDC, "Worldwide Mobile Worker Population 2011-2015 Forecast". December 2011, doc #232073.
3 Giga Om, "The Consumer Video Chat Market, 2010-2015" Report, 2010.

Forward Looking Statements
This release contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of the "safe harbor" provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 regarding future events, future demand for our products, and the future performance of Polycom, including statements regarding (i) the expected Polycom RealPresence Cloud offerings and the development thereof, (ii) the future expansion of Polycom's total addressable market through UC Cloud delivery, (iii) Polycom's expected future revenue growth to $3B over time, (iv) Polycom's goal of making videoconferencing ubiquitous, (v) Polycom's cloud offerings as enabling service providers to accelerate their go to market capabilities and to generate revenues faster, (vi) Polycom's objective of being an enabler of cloud services by partnering with service providers and solutions providers, (vii) cloud-delivered offerings as being a key contributor to the growth of video collaboration demand, (viii) cloud-based delivery as exploding in 2012 and Polycom's solutions as driving new and differentiated business models and video collaboration usage, (ix) social apps as a high growth market for video collaboration, (v) the mission of the OVCC and expected commercially availability of service enablement across the OVCC, (xi) video as a service from the cloud as a true game changer and (xii) the opening of an open video cloud in 2012. These forward-looking statements are subject to risks and uncertainties that may cause actual results to differ materially, including service provider and market receptivity of the Polycom RealPresence Cloud offerings; the impact of competition on our product sales and for our customers and partners; the impact of increased competition due to consolidation in our industry or competition from companies that are larger or that have greater resources than we do; potential fluctuations in results and future growth rates; risks associated with general economic conditions and external market factors; the market acceptance of our products and changing market demands, including demands for differing technologies or product and services offerings; our ability to successfully integrate our acquisitions into our business; possible delays in the development, availability and shipment of new products; increasing costs and differing uses of capital; changes in key personnel that may cause disruption to the business; any disruptive impact to us that may result from new executive hires; the impact of restructuring actions; and the impact of global conflicts that may adversely impact our business. Many of these risks and uncertainties are discussed in the Company's Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q for the quarter ended September 30, 2011, and in other reports filed by Polycom with the SEC. Polycom disclaims any intent or obligations to update these forward-looking statements.

NOTE: The product plans, specifications, and descriptions herein are provided for information only and subject to change without notice, and are provided without warranty of any kind, express or implied. Polycom reserves the right to modify future product plans at any time. Products and related specifications referenced herein are not guaranteed and will be delivered on a when and if available basis.

© 2012 Polycom, Inc. All rights reserved. POLYCOM®, the Polycom "Triangles" logo, and the names and marks associated with Polycom's products are trademarks and/or service marks of Polycom, Inc. and are registered and/or common law marks in the United States and various other countries. All other trademarks are property of their respective owners.

Contact Information