1plex recently completed a project where Polycom Immersive video conference solutions were implemented and integrated into an established Microsoft Skype for Business estate.
The customer uses Skype4b very successfully on mobile devices, at the desktop and in meeting rooms across a global estate. However, company executives (who have had previous experience of immersive video solutions from the likes of Cisco/Tandberg and Polycom) recognised that a gap existed in the Skype4b solution. These executives can spend up to 7 hours on conference calls with colleagues in geographically dispersed locations. For calls of this duration and intensity it was clear that the requirement for immersive, life size, very high-quality meetings hadn’t been adequately addressed.
Working with Poly, the immersive studio Flex was installed with a brief to provide the best achievable video conferencing experience between studios and very importantly to provide seamless connectivity to the existing Skype4b estate.
Rooms were custom built with studio grade acoustics as well as lighting and furniture from the Polycom catalogue. Behind the scenes, the Realpresence backend platform was deployed to provide seamless connectivity to Skype.
Immersive rooms are invited to a Skype meeting exactly the same way as any other participant. In the room the meeting appears on the console and can be joined with a single touch. Audio, video and content sharing work seamlessly whether content is shared from a skype client or the immersive rooms.
User adoption has been pain-free as the process for organising an immersive meeting mirrors the process for a regular skype meeting.
Future projects include the expansion of the system with further rooms deployed in other locations and the organisation is also planning a migration to Microsoft Teams for meetings and conferencing, something that the Realpresence platform can additionally support.
“Our global strategy was for Lync and then Skype video developed at the desktop but we now have solutions for every type of space, meeting room; conference space; town hall; lecture theatre and now immersive studios – plus the strategy for upgrading to Teams is already mapped out.”