& cplSiteName &

Seizing the Mobile Video Conferencing Opportunity

Tim Kridel | Contributing Analyst
Heavy Lifting Analyst Notes
Tim Kridel | Contributing Analyst
8/16/2013
50%
50%

Hard to believe it's been more than a decade since Verizon Wireless coined, "Can you hear me now?" These days, mobile operators might consider a campaign that asks, "Can you see me now?"

No, we're not referring to streaming mobile video services such as Netflix and YouTube. As the new Heavy Reading 4G/LTE Insider, "Mobile Video Conferencing: Cutting the Endpoint Cord," explains, two-way video services are growing at a rapid pace in terms of product selection and adoption.

"About 30 percent of our meetings have at least one mobile device," says Stu Aaron, chief commercial officer at Blue Jeans Network, a provider of cloud-based video conferencing services. "Overall, mobile devices are about 6 percent of our endpoint mix right now, but it's one of the fastest-growing segments." A competitor, Vidtel, says about 25 percent to 50 percent of its services' participants currently use mobile devices.

Why? One reason is growing smartphone and tablet penetration in enterprises of every size. Virtually all these devices have a forward-facing camera, 3G and WiFi, if not Long Term Evolution (LTE), too. Video conferencing vendors such as LifeSize and Radvision recognized this trend and have spent the past year-plus rolling out apps that enable those devices to double as endpoints.

For enterprises, part of the attraction is that mobile offers a low-cost way to extend video conferencing throughout their organization as opposed to spending $500 or more to equip each employee with a purpose-built endpoint. For video conferencing vendors, mobile will both cannibalize and drive endpoint sales. That's because when more employees can use video conferencing, the greater the return on those companies' investments in room-based and executive desktop systems, which serve completely different needs. Mobile video conferencing also could become another way for contact centers to cater to consumers whose preferred or only Internet device is a smartphone or tablet.

The rise of mobile video conferencing is, like so many other services, a mixed bag for mobile operators. On the plus side, it could encourage enterprises to increase the size -- and thus spend -- of their mobile data plans. But unless mobile operators can find a way to add value, video conferencing is yet another over-the-top (OTT) service that relegates them to dumb-pipe status.

A few mobile operators are already staking their claim. For example, Telefónica is the sole owner of TokBox, a startup that provides a cloud framework that mobile developers can use to build video conferencing into their apps. Mobile operators also can look to their wired counterparts for potential strategies. For years, telcos such as AT&T Inc. and Deutsche Telekom AG have offered wired video conferencing packages for the enterprise market as a way to sell faster connections and reduce churn through multi-service relationships.

Mobile operators also could use quality of service (QoS), tariffs or both to add value in customers' eyes and differentiate their video conferencing services from those of OTT providers. "The operator-provided service should have a significant advantage and better quality," says Michael Axelsson, director of the Visual Communication Program at Ericsson. "The quality and simplicity should be an advantage and a differentiation for business users."

Will it, though? We're about to find out.

— Tim Kridel, Contributing Analyst, Heavy Reading 4G/LTE Insider


This report,"Mobile Video Conferencing: Cutting the Endpoint Cord," is available as part of an annual subscription (6 issues per year) to Heavy Reading 4G/LTE Insider, priced at $1,595. Individual reports are available for $900. To subscribe, please visit: www.heavyreading.com/4glte.

(3)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View        ADD A COMMENT
RitchBlasi
50%
50%
RitchBlasi,
User Rank: Light Sabre
8/19/2013 | 2:01:57 PM
Mobile Video Conferencing
Would really be interested in finding out how these companies came up with their growth estimates and track them over a six month period.  While I believe there is a market and use for video conferencing in business I find it hard to believe that using a mobile device so that someone can just see your face offers any benefit - especially since using video eats up a data plan quickly, as does VoIP calling.

Might make more sense for tablet users using video collaboration services - something that adds more than simple face time to a call.  So, for example, a real estate agent in Los Angeles can show a potential client in NYC the inside and outside of a home, or, a doctor who might need to share a patient's CT Scan with another doctor(s) for a consultation.

I run my business from multiple locations and while I think POVC (plain old video conferencing) can add a dose of interpersonal communication among remote workers, its an expensive proposition that still needs to offer more than "Face-Time" like features.
timkridel
50%
50%
timkridel,
User Rank: Light Beer
8/16/2013 | 3:44:58 PM
Re: LTE v WiFi
Mostly Wi-Fi. As a Vidyo executive says in the report, "Most people will assume – which reflects reality – that most calls will happen on Wi-Fi."

 

One reason is because LTE still isn't in a lot of places. Another reason is because most users will conduct videoconferences sitting down, which means there's a good chance that there will be Wi-Fi available, unlike when you're in a car or walking down the street.  
Sarah Thomas
50%
50%
Sarah Thomas,
User Rank: Blogger
8/16/2013 | 3:38:29 PM
LTE v WiFi
Any idea how much mobile video conferencing is done over LTE versus WiFi, Tim? I imagine most is WiFi only. I'm not sure if its growth will encourage enterprises to buy larger mobile data plans, but the current caps might make them rethink which network they use.
Educational Resources
sponsor supplied content
Educational Resources Archive
More Blogs from Heavy Lifting Analyst Notes
The major topic of discussion at Nokia's Network Management Breakfast, held in Nice during TM Forum Live 2016, was the automation of network operations to support 5G.
As data traffic continues to expand quickly each year, demand for 400G connections also expands, making way for numerous opportunities for vendors who make 400G components.
In a continental coming-out party for cable's new broadband spec, European cable operators embrace gigabit speeds that DOCSIS 3.1 promises to deliver.
As network operators and vendors are preparing for 5G systems, antenna research and development (R&D) is expanding to help meet the performance requirements that will be needed in the very near future.
Operators have firmly identified VNF architecture as the next hurdle on the critical path to NFV, and the clamor for cloud-native VNFs is growing rapidly.
From The Founder
The independent evaluation of Nokia's key virtual network functions (VNFs) was a defining moment for the Finnish giant.
Flash Poll
Live Streaming Video
Charting the CSP's Future
Six different communications service providers join to debate their visions of the future CSP, following a landmark presentation from AT&T on its massive virtualization efforts and a look back on where the telecom industry has been and where it's going from two industry veterans.
LRTV Custom TV
Energy 2020: Growing Services, Not Consumption

6|24|16   |   07:18   |   (0) comments


Management of power requirements needs to be a key consideration as cable operators deploy new services, says Dan Cooper, vice president of critical infrastructure for Charter Communications and chair of the SCTE/ISBE Standards Program's Energy Management Subcommittee. In this video, Cooper discusses the importance of cable operators and technology partners ...
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei & TDC First to Launch DOCSIS 3.1 Trial in Europe

6|24|16   |     |   (0) comments


To meet the rising demands for high-speed broadband and to tackle fierce competition for 1.5 million household, TDC wanted to upgrade its network to use the latest technology. Using Huawei's DOCSIS 3.1 solution, TDC is now able to offer gigabit speeds to its customers.
LRTV Documentaries
OPNFV Summit: Key Takeaways

6|22|16   |   03:28   |   (0) comments


MANO shortfalls, an increasingly bloated open source ecosystem and the cultural challenges for network operators were among the key takeaways from the OPNFV Summit in Berlin.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Bringing Ultra Broadband to the South Pacific

6|22|16   |   7:55   |   (0) comments


At Singapore's UBBS 2016 summit, Light Reading speaks to Lim Chee Siong, Huawei's CMO in the South Pacific Region.
LRTV Custom TV
Juniper's NFV Platform

6|22|16   |     |   (0) comments


A telco cloud is a key enabler for service providers to deliver virtualized services to their customers. Juniper has a differentiated approach with an open and comprehensive NFV platform to build the cloud of the future for multiple use cases.
Women in Comms Introduction Videos
Infinera: The Glass Ceiling's Been Broken

6|22|16   |   4:34   |   (0) comments


Shannon Williams, an engineer by trade and now the director of sales for Infinera's major accounts, draws confidence from being a female in a male-dominated industry and hopes other women will too as industry dynamics swing in our favor.
LRTV Custom TV
RAD Demonstrates SD-WAN Functionality at BCE 2016

6|22|16   |     |   (0) comments


In conjunction with Versa Networks, RAD demos a joint solution for SD-WAN implementation. The solution uses RAD's ETX-2i, a vCPE platform integrating a powerful IP and Carrier Ethernet NID/NTU with a field-pluggable x86 NFV module that runs Versa's FlexVNF for SD-WAN functionality. The demo implements SD-WAN over a simulated service provider footprint by deploying ...
LRTV Custom TV
Radware on Virtualizing Network Security

6|21|16   |     |   (0) comments


Radware's Michael O'Malley highlights the benefits for service providers of virtualizing network security.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei 2016 UBBS World Tour: Singapore

6|21|16   |   02:39   |   (0) comments


Highlights from Huawei's UBBS World Tour event in Singapore.
LRTV Custom TV
The FlowBROKER Solution

6|21|16   |     |   (0) comments


During a demo at the Big Communications Event 2016, Accedian director of product line solutions Greg Spear demonstrates how the FlowBROKER distributed packet capture solution (part of Accedian's SkyLIGHT platform) can be used to troubleshoot and resolve QoE issues.

FlowBROKER is the industry's first lossless remote packet capture solution, which uses ...

LRTV Documentaries
BCE 2016: Dell & the New World Order

6|21|16   |   22:48   |   (0) comments


Dell's Jim Ganthier on how the very essence of enterprise is being affected by digital disruption – and how the cloud can help companies find a path forward.
LRTV Documentaries
BCE 2016: The CSP of the Future

6|20|16   |     |   (0) comments


Traditional telecom operators have been adopting new ways of doing business from the IT sector and emulating web-scale companies in their technology adoption. Are these strategies succeeding? A panel of experts at BCE considered the evidence...
Upcoming Live Events
September 13-14, 2016, The Curtis Hotel, Denver, CO
November 3, 2016, The Montcalm Marble Arch, London
November 30, 2016, The Westin Times Square, New York City
December 6-8, 2016,
May 16-17, 2017, Austin Convention Center, Austin, TX
All Upcoming Live Events
Infographics
A new survey conducted by Heavy Reading and TM Forum shows that CSPs around the world see the move to digital operations as a necessary part of their overall virtualization strategies.
Hot Topics
FCC to Vote on 5G Spectrum on July 14
Dan Jones, Mobile Editor, 6/20/2016
'Brexit' Vote Hits BT, Vodafone
Iain Morris, News Editor, 6/24/2016
Twitter Buys Magic Pony... Not That Kind
Mari Silbey, Senior Editor, Cable/Video, 6/20/2016
AT&T Settles on LTE for Cellular IoT
Dan Jones, Mobile Editor, 6/22/2016
Google Fiber Buys Webpass in Wireless Play
Iain Morris, News Editor, 6/23/2016
Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed
BETWEEN THE CEOs - Executive Interviews
At the BCE 2016 show in Austin, ECI Telecom CEO Darryl Edwards tells Light Reading founder and CEO about the Elastic Network concept and the company's NFV and cybersecurity developments.
Mark Dzuban, president and CEO of SCTE/ISBE, sits down with Steve Saunders in Light Reading's New York office to discuss the society's Energy 2020 campaign, including its mission to benefit the environment, enable economic benefits and the key challenges facing cable operators wanting to reduce energy consumption.
Animals with Phones
Live Digital Audio

Our world has evolved through innovation from the Industrial Revolution of the 1740s to the information age, and it is now entering the Fourth Industrial Revolution, driven by technology. Technology is driving a paradigm shift in the way digital solutions deliver a connected world, changing the way we live, communicate and provide solutions. It can have a powerful impact on how we tackle some of the world’s most pressing problems. In this radio show, Caroline Dowling, President of Communications Infrastructure & Enterprise Computing at Flex, will join Women in Comms Director Sarah Thomas to discuss the impact technology has on society and how it can be a game-changer across the globe; improving lives and creating a smarter world. Dowling, a Cork, Ireland, native and graduate of Harvard Business School's Advanced Management Program, will also discuss her experience managing an international team focused on innovation in an age of high-speed change.