Revolutionary Consortium

Revolutionary Consortium Makes B2B Video as Easy as a Phone Call


By John Poole 

In recent years, great strides have been made in improving video communication capabilities and increasing adoption in enterprises across the globe. However, interoperability and connectivity challenges have remained a barrier to the mass deployment of visual communications worldwide. To overcome these challenges, Polycom has teamed with the most influential service providers globally to establish the Open Visual Communications Consortium (OVCC), which will enable users to make on-demand video calls from anywhere to everywhere, regardless of the network they are calling from—or to.

OVCC is the world's first and largest open video exchange cloud, with 14 leading global service providers as founding members: Airtel, AT&T, BCS Global, BT Conferencing, Cable&Wireless Worldwide, Global Crossing, Glowpoint, iFormata Communications, Masergy, Orange Business Services, PCCW Global, Telefonica, Telstra, and Verizon.

Following are details on this landmark industry consortium and what it will mean for your business.

Unique differentiators of the Open Visual Communications Consortium
OVCC is the first global visual communications exchange based on open standards. The consortium is revolutionary because it allies leading global service providers to establish the only multi-vendor, multi-network visual communication exchange with critical mass, enabling simple connection of video calls beyond corporate firewalls and proprietary video platforms for millions of users worldwide. By linking service provider networks and exchanges globally, OVCC will deliver breakthrough B2B video connectivity and interoperability and establish a new paradigm for high-quality consumer visual communications.

Why is Polycom leading a B2B exchange initiative in the marketplace?
Polycom's objective is to accelerate video adoption and growth through a robust B2B strategy. OVCC will soon make it as easy to make an enterprise-quality video call as it is to make a voice call on your mobile phone. This ease-of-access and -use will completely change the game for the mass adoption of visual communications. OVCC members will connect millions of users worldwide via agreements with hundreds of interconnected service providers across six continents—ushering in an era of growth and opportunity for the industry, and fundamentally changing the way people communicate and work.

What are the anticipated advantages of OVCC over competitive telepresence exchanges?
Investment protection—OVCC will support a mixed endpoint and vendor environment, allowing customers to extend the utilization of their existing video investments with their customers and supply chain partners. OVCC is an exchange environment for many vendors.

  • The largest reach of global video endpoints from day one—No slow ramp-up will be required for OVCC to reach critical mass. The consortium will aggregate the user communities of the OVCC members' managed and hosted services. And since OVCC supports a mix of vendors and endpoint types, the consortium will facilitate immediate access to a B2B community of many thousands as soon as OVCC services come to market in 2012. 
  • A service delivery environment, not just a multimedia dial-tone—OVCC subscribers will have access to numerous hosted video applications and services, as well as a worldwide network of public rooms. Other telepresence exchanges do not offer comparable services to these offerings. 
  • Universal availability—The consortium will make the OVCC service available for resale through smaller managed service providers worldwide so that customers will be able to subscribe to OVCC from managed and hosted video services providers they already have relationships with. 

Who will I be able to reach? Who can reach me? Will it matter which OVCC member the customer chooses?
OVCC is architected so all members will have the ability to deliver a consistent baseline B2B service. Initially, the baseline OVCC service will be a “meet me” conference environment that provides customers with virtual meeting numbers they can share with colleagues, suppliers, and others to dial between OVCC conferencing providers. Scheduled conference options will also be available for customers requiring a higher-quality conferencing experience. Beyond the baseline service, each member's capabilities may differ significantly, which is why each customer will need to evaluate what various partners deliver above and beyond the baseline OVCC service.

John Poole is Senior Director of Business Development for Service Providers at Polycom.

Learn More

Polycom and OVCC are rewriting the rules for telepresence and visual communications. Learn more about this revolutionary consortium through the following resources: