Mitel Embeds Vidyo's Video Conferencing Software in UC Offering

The companies are expanding their partnership by integrating Vidyo's VidyoWorks technology into Mitel's MiCollab collaboration platform.

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Mitel is bolstering the video conferencing capabilities of its unified communications software platform by embedding Vidyo's technology into the offering.

The two companies on Nov. 19 announced an expansion of their relationship, which until now essentially had been primarily a distribution partnership. Now Vidyo's VidyoWorks platform is fully integrated into Mitel's MiCollab unified communications (UC) software, bringing greater video conferencing capabilities to an offering that already included such features as real-time voice, video, instant messaging and Web collaboration.

Through the integration, Mitel is able to bring Vidyo's multi-point video audio and collaboration capabilities from any mobile endpoint, including notebooks, tablets and smartphones, officials with both companies said. It also opens up more opportunities for Mitel channel partners, they said.

Mitel was able to embed the VidyoWorks platform by taking advantage of Vidyo APIs. The companies already have completed the integration and the latest version of MiCollab is available now, officials said.

"This new agreement means that today any of Mitel's 3,500 channel partners worldwide are able to deliver the best in scalable video conferencing and collaboration to virtually any endpoint," Kelly Williams, public relations manager at Vidyo, wrote in a post on the company blog.

The expanded partnership addresses a growing demand from customers, according to Ron Wellard, chief products and solutions officer at Mitel.

"End customers across industries are increasingly expressing interest in integrated video communications as a key part of their collaboration strategy," Wellard said in a statement. "Vidyo is the technology leader in affordable software-based video conferencing solutions and has been an important partner to Mitel for years."

The relationship between Mitel and Vidyo goes back a few years. In 2012, the two companies said they were teaming up to bring enterprise-level video conferencing to VMware's desktop virtualization offering.

The UC and video conferencing markets are both going through a transition toward more cloud- and software-based solutions. Analysts with IHS Infonetics in March reported that more than half the 162 North American companies that responded to a survey said that they will be running some of their UC applications in either private or public clouds by 2016. In addition, IDC analysts for several years have tracked the move away from conference-room-size video conferencing equipment and toward cloud- and software-based offerings. Much of this is fueled by such trends as bring your own device (BYOD) and an increasingly mobile workforce that wants to be able to collaborate at any time, from anywhere and on any device they choose.

Vidyo is one of a growing number of vendors that entered the video conferencing market with HD software- and cloud-only offerings that challenge such established players as Cisco Systems, Polycom and Lifesize Communications. Those larger vendors also are building out their cloud-based portfolios. Since taking over as Mitel CEO in 2011, Richard McBee has been shifting the company's focus to the cloud and mobile markets, both through in-house development and acquisitions of such companies as Aastra Technologies in 2013 and Mavenir Systems this year.

The company last year made an unsuccessful attempt to buy UC rival ShoreTel for $574 million.