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TMCnet Conferencing Week in Review

June 04, 2011

In usual fashion, the conferencing space saw lots of action this week, with a range of product and industry announcements hitting the wires – including the ground-breaking Polycom-HP acquisition.

On Wednesday, unified communications and video conferencing leader Polycom revealed it would acquire the assets of Hewlett-Packard’s Visual Collaboration business. The agreement, valued at a staggering $89 million in cash, will comprise of HP’s suite of video and telepresence solutions and Managed Services. 

In a webcast, Polycom and top industry experts revealed Polycom will acquire HP’s Halo line of products and Managed Services; Polycom will become HP’s exclusive video communications provider, as well as a supplier of HP’s WebOS platform; Polycom and HP will take their strategic relationship to another level with deep UC video integration with Lync and Office 365; and finally, the two companies will establish the first-ever video open exchange cloud with 14 of the world’s leading service providers to enable ubiquitous video connectivity to customers.

In other news, MasterMind Prep Learning Solutions introduced its “next-generation” Live Online Tutoring to help students anywhere in the world improve reading, math and SAT prep skills in the comfort of their own home. Using a virtual classroom powered by Cisco WebEx, the students will be able to learn on any computer, tablet or smartphone. Teachers and students will be able to share Web-based curriculum from their screen, work problems on a digital whiteboard, write or ask students to write on the screen, and get feedback by polling or using instant chat.

While conferencing is becoming more beneficial to the education space, it is undoubtedly becoming a permanent part of the way businesses function. According to a Mashable article, while working from home has become more commonplace and costs of video conferencing have come down, utilizing video communications technology is a great way to cut costs, boost productivity and more.

Want to learn more about the latest in communications and technology? Then be sure to attend ITEXPO West 2011, taking place Sept. 13-15, 2011, in Austin, Texas. ITEXPO offers an educational program to help corporate decision makers select the right IP-based voice, video, fax and unified communications solutions to improve their operations. It's also where service providers learn how to profitably roll out the services their subscribers are clamoring for – and where resellers can learn about new growth opportunities. To register, click here.

Tammy Wolf is a TMCnet web editor. She covers a wide range of topics, including IP communications and information technology. To read more of her articles, please visit her columnist page.