We interrupt our regularly scheduled program to provide two separate product updates from Adobe Connect and from NextPlane. Adobe Connect has introduced several new features with its latest release of version 9.2, while NextPlane has introduced a Microsoft 365 UC Federation service.
Among the Adobe Connect features, the latest release includes an improved video pod; a single video pod can include the webcam video of everyone in a meeting, and Adobe Connect doesn’t limit the number of users who can share the screen. Adobe Connect provides the video feeds in a grid that made the best use of the size of the pod with a new filmstrip, allowing the presenter or host to choose the filmstrip view or the grid view, also defining which camera should be highlighted as the main video feed.
Adobe Connect meetings are persistent, so users don’t have to be scheduled each time they want to establish a meeting. New users will now receive an email with their user credentials and a link hat will take them to their new Adobe Connect room, eliminating several steps in the initial set up. The new release also offers the option of integrating social profiles to register for an event.
In other news, NextPlane has launched Microsoft Office 365 Federation Service as a B2B UC collaboration offer. Without a federation or gateway service, Microsoft Office 365 only allows direct federation with other Microsoft platforms, such as Lync 2010.
By becoming part of UC Exchange community, NextPlane offers Office 365 customers the ability to collaborate with business partners across a range of unified communication (UC) platforms including IBM Sametime; Cisco Jabber XCP, Unified Presence Server (CUPS), and WebEx Messenger; Unify OpenScape; Google Apps, OpenFire, and other UC platforms.
Commenting in a statement on the new service, Farzin Shahidi, CEO of NextPlane said, “Microsoft Office 365 is one of the fastest-growing UC-as-a-Service (UCaaS) in the enterprise. We are now enabling the Office 365 customers to benefit from and/or join collaborative ecosystems that are forming across their industry segments.” He added, ““Through the NextPlane UC Exchange service, we enable partner organizations to overcome the technical challenges of Office 365.”
We’ll come back next time to our review of 2013 trends with a highlight from the UC infrastructure supplier community.