From Webex updates to MS Teams 2.0 We’re Highlighting Enterprise Connect Innovations and Announcements.
Enterprise Connect 2023 is in the books, and the ISI team was there in the Expo Hall, where we met and chatted with many customers, partners, and industry professionals.
AI dominated the conversation at EC2023 this year, but additional and related topics such as platform interoperability, the new MS Teams update and the future of hybrid work garnered a lot of attention at the event in Orlando as well.
Here’s a lookback at some of the most notable things we saw, heard and experienced at Enterprise Connect 2023:
Webex Calling is Growing & Getting Smarter
On the heels of last month’s announcement that there are now over 10 million Webex Calling users, Cisco announced several AI-powered new and upcoming enhancements to Webex. AI is of course not new to Webex and other modern UC platforms. Cisco has invested in AI for decades, which has led to today’s reimagined workspaces and better customer experiences. Cisco’s Cognitive Collaboration vision, including the use of AI and Machine Learning, was the company’s big news at Enterprise Connect in 2019.
Cisco’s newly announced Webex features are a realization of this vision, using AI to make collaboration more seamless, including:
Automatically adds more depth and sharpness to a meeting attendee’s appearance.
Gives attendees the ability to give feedback nonverbally. New gestures, such as hands raised in celebration, pressed together for thanks, and in the shape of a heart for appreciation will soon be a part of the Webex experience.
3D video effects
Provide a range of options, such as confetti, fireflies, space and other. Combine with gesture detection, and clapping can trigger the confetti video effect.
Be Right Back
Ever have to quickly step away from a meeting to grab something in the other room, let the dog out, answer the doorbell, or other reason? Be Right Back automatically detects you leaving the video frame, then blurs the image and mutes you so you can step away without interrupting the discussion.
Cisco also announced new AI capabilities for its Webex Contact Center and Webex Connect, such as topic analysis, real-time agent coaching, automated chat summaries and more, which are expected to roll out later this year.
On the hardware front, Cisco Board Pro is now certified to run Microsoft Teams Rooms natively. Customers will be able to use Cisco’s AI capabilities in Team meetings and join feature-rich, back-to-back Webex and Teams meetings from the same home screen, with simplified device management. This news showcases the need organizations have for multiplatform experiences that enable frictionless collaboration. Read more about Cisco’s Enterprise Connect announcements.
The New Microsoft Teams
Speaking of Teams, the big news at Enterprise Connect 2.0 from Microsoft was the announcement of the newest version of Teams. The new Teams desktop app is now in preview and the biggest changes are in speed, performance and flexibility.
According to Microsoft, the new Teams app launces twice as fast, and has been optimized for efficiency using 50% less memory, consuming 70% less disk space, and allowing users to speed up their experience across the board, including 3X quicker application installation and 1.7X faster switching between chats or channels.
Microsoft’s other big news at Enterprise Connect surrounded Microsoft 365 Copilot, which uses large language models with organizational data to increase productivity. Copilot’s productivity enhancements span Microsoft’s full suite, summarizing emails in Outlook, helping create in PowerPoint, allowing users to ask data questions in natural language in Excel, and helping people run more effective meetings, organize discussion points, and summarize key actions.
Enterprise Connect 2023’s overall theme seemed to be all of the many tools organizations have today to help thrive in hybrid work environments. Enterprises can find new efficiencies and enable easier collaboration with better meeting experiences, more flexible interoperability, and deeper calling insights – like Infortel Select’s powerful employee productivity, caller experience, and call accounting analytics.