IDG Contributor Network: 6 reasons why Slack is the next Netscape

Netscape provides an excellent illustration as to how tech darlings come and go.

Netscape created and sold Navigator, the browser that essentially invented the World Wide Web. Prior to Netscape, the internet was mostly benefiting geeks and nerds. Netscape changed the world by transforming the internet into the mass-market, browser-powered online world we know and love today.

Netscape’s original business model was to sell licenses for its Navigator browser. It was just over a year old when it had its IPO on Aug. 9, 1995. And in its first day of trading, the stock went from $28 to as high as $74.75, giving the company a value in the billions.

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Source: ddd

RingCentral aims to unify ‘unified communications’

I started my career as an analyst in 2001, and one of the first reports I wrote was on the topic of “unified communications,” or UC as it’s more commonly called today. The concept is pretty simple: Workers use lots of communications tools, so why not bring them together into a single, easy-to-use tool? Makes sense, doesn’t it? 

However, a funny thing has happened over the past 15 years. In an effort to give workers more functionality, many specialty UC vendors popped up. I understand the term “specialty UC” is somewhat of an oxymoron, but this is the state of the industry because we now have UC vendors for video, web conferencing, chat, audio conferencing, VoIP, document sharing, file storage and the list goes on. 

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Source: ddd

IDG Contributor Network: 4 possible outcomes for Avaya

Avaya is one of the largest providers of enterprise communications products and services. It is a complex company of 158 separate entities that employ about 9,700 people worldwide. Most of its entities in North America, representing about 3,800 of its employees, filed for Chapter 11 reorganization earlier this year.

Avaya reported 2016 revenue at $3.7 billion. Despite an annual adjusted EBITDA of $940 million and positive free cash flow, it has a debt problem. It owes about $6 billion due to multiple investors spread over multiple maturity dates over the next several years.

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Source: ddd

IDG Contributor Network: The future of work is surprisingly human: 2 trends to relieve your fears

AI, big data and bots! Oh my! You don’t need to be a troglodyte or tech-wary prognosticator to fear the future of work. Everywhere we look, the same trend is making headlines: less human, more artificial.

But is the future of work really inhuman? To answer that question, it is vital to understand the rise of tech at both the popular and professional level. While it’s certainly given us the ability to defy distance, only recent innovations have cracked the code, allowing us to truly relate. Many lament the perceived shallowness of this tide, but communication and collaboration are primitive desires.

We are, after all, tribal creatures who rally around shared purposes and common goals. Dangers exist, but the good news is technology is finally catching up with human nature.

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Source: ddd

IDG Contributor Network: Trust in our systems: Chapter 11 and Avaya's prognosis

In times of uncertainty, it is best to trust our systems. There are systems that keep us safe such as air traffic control, providing that we arrive at safely distant destinations. There are street light systems that help us cross at busy intersections. In our government, we must have faith in systems, including our separation of powers and a free press.

For the business world, other systems such as the Chapter 11 processes, may not be well understood, but many experts argue are critical.

The Chapter 11 set of processes are especially important at this period of time for the universe of stakeholders that I wrote about recently in “Avaya’s Chapter 11 filing sends waves of disruption.” In this follow-up post, I’ll talk a bit about the Chapter 11 processes and provide some information I gained recently that makes me feel just a bit more comfortable about the future for that universe that surrounds Avaya. Part of this is some recent research and part is due to a briefing that I participated in with Avaya corporate treasurer John Sullivan.

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Source: ddd

VOSS simplifies hybrid Spark provisioning

Last week, Cisco held the European version of it’s Cisco Live event in Berlin. At these events, Cisco typically makes several product announcements and demonstrates many of its new products. Cisco Live is also a time for the company’s alliance and technology partners to showcase their own wares as they look to add value to the Cisco ecosystem. 

One of the more interesting announcements by an technology partner at the 2017 show was from VOSS Solutions, which extended its platform to support Cisco Spark Hybrid Services. The Spark platform has been red hot of late, as Cisco has made it the company’s main UC platform. During the show, the Spark Board garnered a lot of attention, including being part of Ruba Borno’s day 1 keynote

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Source: ddd