There were around 25-30 partners from around the world that attended for several days of discussing the Microsoft UC platform and rich AudioCodes integration.
During the event, we spent quite some time discussing the Microsoft Office 365 Cloud PBX, Cloud PSTN, and new E5 offerings. I even had a chance to present an Enterprise Voice Case Study where one of my customers had a need for creative voice routing with multiple ITSP and E911 needs.
We had a good discussion about this customer need and the AudioCodes/Microsoft integration required. I shared with the group some more information about the AudioCodes and Microsoft Integration Guide that we published this year. Both AudioCodes and the partners at the event were very interested in the various use cases discussed in the guide. It’s a living document, and we plan to update it with new use cases and correct any glaring mistakes that are pointed out by the community. It’s free – go grab your copy!
Microsoft is certainly disrupting the “Cloud UC” market by providing an amazing set of features at reasonable prices. Our own Seth Rodriquez recently updated his blog on the Office 365 E5 offering. The consensus among the Partner Group at AudioCodes HQ and even among our own set of engineers at Mirazon is that nothing really is going to change in the next couple years. On-premises is still a very viable direction for Microsoft UC as a PBX replacement. Cloud PBX is very compelling, but the full PBX replacement features are not expected to be in full-parity until 2017. A couple of the most useful article I’ve seen on this subject have been written by Kevin Kieller and can be found on NoJitter here and here.
We wrapped up the business part of the week with a larger group in the room – including the CEO and COO, many VPs and process owners. It was a good time to have a more informal “round table” type of discussion where we could speak candidly about AudioCodes and Microsoft UC and anything else. As questions arose that required specific skillsets, those people were brought in. I’m so thankful we were at the AudioCodes HQ and has access to the right people at the right time to discuss basically anything across their hardware and software product lines.
Of course, no trip overseas is incomplete without a little exploring. We were fortunate enough to have several different trips to take us around the country. We got to explore many interesting places like the Carmel Winery, Caesarea and the aqueduct, Masada, the Dead Sea, and Jerusalem.
We had a great time. We met new friends. We learned a lot. We are looking forward to implementing new interesting solutions using the AudioCodes and Microsoft UC ecosystem.