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Kollective, Microsoft partnering to deliver Skype meetings over SDNs

Software-defined technologies are changing the way businesses can use video, and at Kollective, we continue to push boundaries. We recently established a partnership with Microsoft to deliver our software-defined enterprise content delivery network solution to Microsoft Skype for Business users, letting them hold video meetings with up to 10,000 users without putting an excess strain on company networks. This functionality is possible through our ECDN and the Microsoft Azure platform, simplifying video meetings and empowering your users to connect in intuitive ways without overburdening your network.

Video meetings can connect geographically disparate employees in meaningful ways by letting them see body language and facial expressions when they get together for a virtual conference. Suddenly, impersonal phone calls turn into video meetings where people can communicate naturally and engage with one another as if they were all present in person. Solutions like Microsoft Skype for Business delivered over the Microsoft Azure platform are making video meetings accessible, and ECDN solutions ensure you can get this functionality without having your network get in the way.

“Our ECDN can support video meetings with up to 10,000 users.”

Understanding how Microsoft Skype for Business is changing video meetings
The idea of holding a large video meeting can be overwhelming for workers. The technology challenges of setting up such a session – not to mention the scheduling logistics – can quickly leave employees intimidated. Skype, on the hand, has a reputation as a simple, intuitive and accessible video tool. Plenty of people have used Skype at home for a wide range of functions, and the thought of setting up a Skype session at work can be easy simply because users are already comfortable with the application.

Microsoft Skype for Business takes the accessibility offered by the core Skype app to enterprises through business-specific features that ensure security and privacy while also making it easier to scale meetings based on end-user needs.

All of these benefits come together to make video meetings a viable tool in the enterprise, but only if your network is able to keep up. This is where ECDN systems come into play.

Using an ECDN to take Skype to another level
Video can consume huge quantities of network bandwidth, especially if you are holding meetings with a large number of concurrent users. This is the downside of video meeting tools that are accessible to your enterprise teams. If you have many workers establishing meetings, you’ll be left with so many people consuming video content that no network could realistically keep up. Enterprise networks simply aren’t built to handle that kind of strain, and the cost of upgrading hardware to meet those demands would be incredibly prohibitive. This is where ECDN tools come into play.

Our tools are making Skype video meetings more accessible.Our tools are making Skype video meetings more accessible.

Tools like Microsoft Skype for Business may drive significant bandwidth creation, but you don’t need to let those challenges hold back your video strategy. The problem here is fairly straightforward – having a large number of users consuming video content means that huge data packets are moving through the network at a high volume. This leads to dropped packets and similar issues, all of which have a major adverse impact on the end-user experience. Purchasing more hardware is rarely the solution because video consumes so much bandwidth that adding infrastructure will rarely get the job done.

ECDN systems use your existing hardware to support video, but do so by moving data through the network more efficiently. This saves you from having to make major investments into hardware and instead lets you expand network functionality through a subscription service. By partnering with Microsoft Skype for Business, we have established the ability to use our ECDN algorithms alongside video content moving through the Skype platform, letting end users leverage the technology to improve their video experiences.

“ECDN solutions bring intelligence to your network.”

Looking at how ECDNs take video to another level
Most enterprise networks can handle video at a small scale. Small groups of users holding video meetings or streaming on-demand content won’t create major problems. However, any large-scale video strategy will quickly overwhelm infrastructure because each data packet is so large. The solution to this problem isn’t to add new capacity, it is to route video data packets in such a way that they impact your network as if you are only moving one data packet at a time.

ECDN solutions bring intelligence to your network. Through a hosted network controller, they analyze your network infrastructure to identify the best pathway to move data through at any time. The result is a situation where each data packet will move through your network in the most logical way possible, maximizing your available bandwidth resources. By integrating with Microsoft Skype for Business, we can ensure organizations running Skype meetings can handle even extremely large meetings. We already support 2.8 million users with our ECDNs, and you can use our client alongside Skype to take your meetings to another level.