The use of video as a communications tool in the enterprise is moving out of the executive suite and onto users desktops, and videoconferencing provider Polycom is stepping up to help enterprises manage and secure that video content.
On June 18, the Pleasanton, Calif., company will launch what officials say is the first enterprise video content management system to pull together all the pieces of the management puzzle.
"Video content is starting to proliferate on the network. Its sitting on peoples PCs and shared servers, e-mailed via file attachments. There are shelves of produced videotapes purchased or produced in-house. Video is hanging about all over the enterprise," said Joan Vandermate, vice president of marketing at Polycom. "Most organizations havent realized that its out there and that its a corporate asset that needs to be managed, secured and protected."
The Polycom Video Media Center 1000 appliance provides a centralized way to create and capture video content, as well as secure, store and search that video content.
"More and more intellectual property in the form of live meetings are being recorded, and training materials, compliance and procedural training is floating out there unsecured," said Vandermate.
"It is a no-brainer need, and a lot of companies have this problem," said Ira Weinstein, a partner at Wainhouse Research. "This addresses a real-world problem in the enterprise."
The Polycom VMC 1000 integrates with Polycoms videoconferencing infrastructure, although it will also work with any H.323 endpoint. It allows users to capture live interactive videoconferences, store them and then stream them to users who dont have a video endpoint but want to view the meetings.
Its aimed at applications such as corporate communications, including internal announcements, investor relations and all-hands meetings; education and training, including distance learning, self-study programs and recorded lectures; human resources, such as new hire training and benefits updates; and sales and marketing applications, including field sales training and special promotions.
The VMC 1000s dashboard allows IT operators to manage the full range of the video content life cycle, ranging from creation, capture and encoding to Webcasting, storage and archiving. It includes the ability to search for specific video content by category, keyword, availability and other search mechanisms and supports up to 1,000 unicast users or more viewers via multicasting. It also allows users to track viewership, frequency of access to different programs and other statistics via a reporting function.
The VMC 1000 builds on an existing Polycom capability in its RSS 2000 to capture and store videoconferencing content, said Weinstein. "Now they have added a layer of middleware that lets you do the other pieces. Over time that middleware will start to talk to a lot of devices and turn into an ecosystem—not just a box," he said.
Weinstein is bullish on the idea of managing the full life cycle of video content. "Today it automates capture through Polycom capture boxes and has some delivery capability in it, but the platform is compatible with a lot of devices. This is a good thing today. It could be a great thing if Polycom follows the right path," he said.
It is due at the end of July and is priced at $95,000 for 500 concurrent streams or $159,000 for 1,000 concurrent streams.