WebEx Teams (the artist formerly known as Spark).

For as long as I can remember, the idea of having a single product for your entire collaboration needs has been the nirvana for customers and end users alike. This actually looks to have become a reality this year with Microsoft and Cisco announcing their products to meet the requirements of team collaboration. Microsoft Teams was closely followed by WebEx Teams earlier in the year and both are aimed at providing this functionality predominantly from the Cloud. At present, Microsoft is Cloud only whereas WebEx can utilise on premise deployments to create a hybrid offering. Their complete Cloud strategy will be completed next year.

This summer has been a revolution for WebEx Teams. If you don’t know the whole story – I’ll try and summarise it in a few bullet points:

  • A few years ago – Cisco brought out a product called Cisco Spark
  • Cisco built a global Cloud infrastructure for this product.
  • Cisco Spark was yet another Cisco Collaboration platform alongside WebEx, Call Manager, Telepresence, Jabber, etc so was a confusing message for customers
  • Earlier this year, Cisco decided to merge Cisco Spark and Cisco WebEx and re-branded it all to WebEx.
  • The Cisco Spark Cloud and WebEx Cloud have been merged over the summer and there is now a single consistent interface for Meetings and for Team Collaboration

WebEx is now a very powerful meetings and team collaboration product which encompasses the entire Cisco Unified Communications and Collaboration platforms. Alongside this, Cisco realise that not all customers will use Cisco products end to end and are making the platform more ‘open’ to communicating with rivals such as Microsoft, Zoom, BlueJeans, etc.

The products are now geared towards a simple user interface that can work seamlessly on desktop, mobile and tablet devices. I’m pleased to say that this firmly delivers on its promises.

We have a number of projects in progress involving WebEx Teams as well as using these products every day to run our ServiceDesk, projects, financing, etc. We are also working on some integration projects with Cisco and Microsoft and will be providing more information on these over the coming months. We have worked with a number of customers to write a Unified Communications and Collaboration roadmap detailing the state of the marketplace and providing a view on the industry as a whole. If you are interested in this process, please get in touch with your Amtech account manager.

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Andrea (Cooper) Gibson - Head of Business Development