Windstream Enterprise's UC service goes global
Windstream Enterprise is dipping its toes in international waters by expanding availability of OfficeSuite UC to Europe and Asia-Pacific.
OfficeSuite UC, Windstream Enterprise's Unified Communications as a Service (UCaaS) platform, is now available outside the US and Canada in 16 locations including Australia, Austria, Belgium, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Netherlands, New Zealand, Spain, Switzerland and the United Kingdom.
Now is an opportune time to invest in unified communications, according to Garter. "Unified communications markets are poised for investment acceleration in the second half of 2021 and first half of 2022 as IT planners move forward with strategic UCaaS initiatives," the research firm wrote in its report Forecast: Unified Communications, Worldwide, 2018-2025, 2Q21. "Global UC spending will grow at a 4.1% CAGR to reach $50.8 billion in 2025."
Austin Herrington, vice president of product marketing for Windstream Enterprise, says the challenge of expanding UCaaS globally lies more in meeting regional regulations and showing customer demand in specific markets than in extending the technology to new areas. The markets Windstream Enterprise chose to enter were based on a combination of demand for the service and the ease of expanding to those locations, he adds.
The service provider plans to continue expanding access to OfficeSuite UC in additional locations in response to demand from customers.
Windstream Enterprise continues to have many customers working remotely and occasionally going to the office, says Herrington, so customers want to be connected whether they're home, driving, in the office, etc. "That's part of the biggest demand that we've seen shifting the bandwidth is that everybody, even the people going back to the office, they still have these remote workers solutions, whether it's softphones or video meeting services."
OfficeSuite UC is a cloud-based UC platform for information sharing and team collaboration and includes over 100 enterprise-grade features, according to Windstream Enterprise. In addition, the service can accommodate up to 20,000 users. Pricing for the UC platform is on a per-seat basis.
OfficeSuite UC features include access from any Internet-connected desktop or mobile device, global time-zone support, free intra-company calling, international numbers and local number portability. It also integrates with Windstream's WE Connect portal, which is a customer dashboard, as well as Windstream's cloud-native Secure Access Service Edge (SASE) platform.
Earlier this month, Windstream Enterprise launched a managed SASE service with Cato Networks for Windstream's North American customers. In addition to integrating with OfficeSuite UC, the SASE service provides customers with access to Windstream Enterprise's Cyber Security Operations Center and Technical Service Management team.
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— Kelsey Kusterer Ziser, Senior Editor, Light Reading