06 Jun

The Possibilities of Digital Transformation

Digital transformation is well underway – and our cloud-hosted collaboration solution is a significant link in the chain for organisations improving how employees and teams connect. Video and instant messaging are two groups of technologies that will be – or are already – having an enormous impact on communication.

Our Hosted Collaboration Solution (HCS) provides organisations with the latest applications to connect more meaningfully, effectively and personally because the applications are delivered to the desktop, PC and mobile devices. It is a cloud-managed solution connecting users easily, instead of the traditional model of on-premise infrastructure.

The dynamic nature of the digital environment also dramatically simplifies communications updates and upgrades. An enhancement is released and deployed automatically, without any distraction or intrusiveness for the end users.

To learn more about the HCS capabilities – those we specialise in designing, delivering and managing – follow the link here: https://bit.ly/2JiqYhO

If there are questions you’ve got, contact us. We’re more than happy to assist.

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01 Jun

New Comscentre Portal Release

We’re pleased to announce that our new refreshed portal is now online.

The Comscentre Portal has been completely updated, starting with a new Dashboard that delivers clear insights, asset information, new features and functionality with an intuitive user experience.

Users will notice the enhancements immediately, after login they are presented with a brand-new Dashboard as a home page. The Dashboard displays key information that users can quickly review, such as:

  • The ‘Active Projects’ tracker: Progression to the completion of a project is shown to provide full visibility of projects.
  • Support Ticket Summary: It captures current, open tickets and closed tickets from the last three months.
  • Devices Under Management: Routing, UC, application services, firewalls and other devices are tallied.
  • Last 3 Bills: Showing the trends in call volumes and invoice values.
  • Site Health Summary: The connectivity status of offices / sites is presented in real-time enabling seamless network monitoring.

From the Dashboard, users are able to drill-down to into further detail as required.

Another option – for all customers – is the ability to display Network Map information as a ‘wallboard’.

Network oversight and analysis is available under the ‘Network Management’ tab. Various types of wallboards and Network Maps can be custom-built. If you have already implemented a wallboard it will display here. If it is something your organisation would like to implement, your Account Manager is more than happy to assist! By having Network Mapping, customers can view their entire network, inspect individual link utilisation and operate a dedicated virtual NOC – all within the new portal.

So, login to the Comscentre Portal and explore – click here.

If you’d like to find out more, arrange a demo or look at Network Mapping, please speak to your Account Manager, or contact us.

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18 May

Comscentre Accredited to Advise on nbn Business Solutions

Organisations planning the move to the nbn broadband access network will encounter complexity and genuine challenges.

As an accredited nbn Business Accredited Adviser, we are recognised with the knowledge and experience to guide organisations along the journey – from initial planning to a fully managed network solution – bringing the nbn access network into operations. The nbn Business Accredited Adviser capability means that we have a team of product, consulting and engineering experts with an intimate knowledge of the nbn access network design and its application within the business environment.

We exist to enable organisations to grow in the digital economy – by transforming how our customers Connect, Collaborate and Operate. We take care of the communications networks to let our clients focus exclusively on what they do best. Our nbn Business Accredited Adviser accreditation underpins our commitment to simplify the complex task of leveraging the nbn access network to positively shape business’ networks.

Get in touch to arrange a consult with our team of Advisors, on how we can assist guiding a successful nbn transition. The potential and impact of robust, reliable connectivity has never been greater.

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27 Apr

Cisco Collaboration Summit: April 2018

The building of one single collaboration brand becomes clearer.

Cisco’s announcements last week regarding the updates and increased integration across the collaboration portfolio are major – and are the largest launch of new technology in Cisco’s history.

All of Cisco’s cloud-connected collaboration is becoming unified under the Cisco Webex brand. Effectively, Cisco Webex will be the overarching cloud-collaboration tool and will combine and comprise the functionality to include: Webex Calling, Webex Meetings and Webex Teams.

The announcements from the Collaboration Summit last Thursday night (U.S. time) filtered through to the Australian market Friday morning, April 20. Globally, the collaboration product changes will be reaching markets through our sales teams shortly.

There were five key updates and changes to the collaboration portfolio, coming together under the one Cisco Webex brand. Here they are:

 

1. A new Cisco Webex Meetings experience

Web conferencing and video conferencing are converging into one simple, video-first meeting experience that will flow across all devices: video-end points, handsets, smart boards and mobile. An upgraded user experience will also support the app’ in its well-established functionality.

It has been enhanced to deliver to the best meeting experience in the industry – a video-first user interface, new desktop, mobile and web apps.

 

2. Cisco Spark will become Cisco Webex Teams

Cisco Webex Teams will transform and take over from Cisco Spark as the primary team collaboration application for companies seeking an easy-to-use platform to chat in a persistent feed, hold a digital whiteboard session and share files. A new single interface will bring together Webex Meetings and Teams.

Designed to help teams move work forward, with a broad set of tools for any project, in an integrated, secure Meetings experience.

 

3. Increased operability

The announcement included integration with multi-vendor environments. Cisco will continue to invest in integrations with third-party tools, including the Microsoft Teams application. This will be integrated into Cisco Webex Teams.

 

4. Cisco Webex Share device

The Cisco Webex Share is a single device that fits in your pocket and will enable ‘huddle’ spaces – small meeting spaces – with Cisco Webex connectivity and functionality.  It is easily connected with TVs/monitors in small meeting rooms and allows rich collaboration features and user interfaces such as wireless screen-sharing and presentation.

 

5. Webex Assistance

Artificial intelligence (AI) software has been developed and programed into all meeting products/solutions and will immediately start working on cloud-connected devices. Webex Assistance will offer features such as intelligence spanning command and control, natural language understanding and semantic understanding, among others.

 

The scale and scope of the changes is significant, with a road-map in place to release all the changes and products to the market before the end of July 2018.

Beneath the entire strategic product change is a clear vision to simplify how team members within businesses collaborate and achieve outcomes together. To learn more about how we can help you deliver a simplified communications and collaboration environment for your business get in touch.

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08 Feb

CTO Update: SD-WAN

So, what’s the hype with SD-WAN? Our customers are talking about going to SD-WAN. But why? SD-WAN means different things to different people and its often confused with SDN.

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Chief Technology Officer, Geoff Tyerman


SDN is more about defining a network and something a telco or a very large organisation might use to optimise the operation of their network by dynamically changing and configuring the network, usually in the Data Centre in Realtime via software.

Both SDN and SD-WAN aim to virtualise network resources, provide better performance and visibility, automated deployment and most importantly reduce total cost of ownership.

However, SD-WAN is all about delivering business solutions and not just providing infrastructure.  When you break it down, it promises four main outcomes:

  1. Transport Independence by virtualising the network to introduce multiple independent network paths;
  2. Application optimisation via centralised network visibility and control of QOS and bandwidth to improve productivity and user experience;
  3. Intelligent path control with policy based routing including automatic best path selection based on loss, latency and jitter to help ensure high network availability;
  4. Secure connectivity using AES encryption to help secure communication with cloud applications, remote office and data centres.

One of the strong messages from the many SD-WAN vendors is the emphasis on removing private networks and replacing the traditional WAN with broadband tails. However, these TCO’s are based on the cost of MPLS network tails in the US where MPLS tails are very expensive and broadband is very cheap. This is quite a different story in Australia for example in the US MPLS tails are charged around $150-300 per Mb, where as in Australia we see prices around $5-$20 per Mb.

This dramatic price variance may mean that moving away from MPLS networks in Australia might not be the answer, particularly as the NBN is only a broadband network and has yet to mature into a business grade service that matches the quality we enjoy from fibre or bonded copper.

So, I see SD-WAN being introduced as more of a Hybrid solution by mixing MPLS and the underlying transport technologies, and using the features of the SD-WAN with the MPLS network particularly as we become increasingly security focused.  As businesses strive to ensure their most critical applications perform, whether customer-facing or productivity tools for their employees, SD-WAN will continue to evolve and will play a key role as network managers continue to search for a new approach to WAN infrastructure.

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18 Dec

Gilbert + Tobin Case Study

Earlier this year we were part of one of the most transformative projects, with Gilbert + Tobin’s Sydney office relocation and upgrade at Barangaroo.

A traditional legal office layout with numerous, individual offices was swapped for an open-planned fit out to facilitate closer collaboration, unlock staff mobility and workplace flexibility, and modernise a rigid telephony platform.

Read about the entire project and the outcomes via the case study, available here.

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31 Aug

Global Interconnection Index: The Explosion of the Digital Economy

Interconnecting bandwidth is expected to grow by 45% to 5000 TBPS by 2020, while digital technology use can create $1.36 trillion in additional economic output in the world’s top 10 economies in 2020.

Equinix’s Global Interconnection Index sets out the regions, industry sectors and bandwidth models that are due for significant growth in the next 2 years. We have invested significantly into our core to be prepared for business’ explicit need for secure, strong and fast connectivity.

Download a copy of the Infographic and Report.

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25 Jul

Managed Data Network – Professional Services

Office moves and relocations are a common exercise in business – whether it be a large-scale head office move or a new site coming online with a small workforce to get off the ground first. A managed data network, by Comscentre, will ensure the change supports the business objectives and delivers value before the project has even started.

Regardless of project size or scope, it is imperative that communication technologies transition seamlessly from the existing site to the new, particularly internet connectivity given today’s enormous reliance. Undergoing a service availability check with a Comscentre Account Manager is something that should be scheduled into the project plan from very early on. New site addresses can easily be inspected remotely, as the network and data team examine available link options. And because we’re a service aggregator, if a service installed at the existing site is not available at the new location we can easily identify a like-for-like alternative to ensure application continuity. Effectively, every single site is different and every network connection is also specifically provisioned, connecting the business’ data services with the infrastructure, either on-premise, hosted or a hybrid of both.

What’s more, by carrying out a service availablity check through the Account Management team, who will engage our network and data team, it is easy to identify the sites and addresses that will deliver the highest quality connections and best serviceability. The goal is to either maintain a robust service delivery standard on current network connections when moving or develop a plan collaboratively to deploy an upgraded service.

Ultimately, it is most important that when office moves are being carried out, new sites are becoming active in the network or adding new staff and changing your environment, that we deliver the best possible service to make the transition as straightforward and productive as possible.

Reach out to your Account Manager if you have a project upcoming where we can assist.

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22 Jun

A New Class of Collaboration Technologies

Organisations today are not seeking out a greater amount of communication or collaboration technologies. What they seek is more efficiency in collaborating. ‘Collaboration’ comes in many forms: email, meetings, conference calls, etc. The idea that more is needed is inaccurate.

HBR’s Services Report was formed on feedback from more than 300 executives. “In reality, people don’t want more collaboration. They want to decrease the amount of time spent on collaboration while doing it more effectively.”

The report gives an insightful view into the expectations of collaboration solutions and what’s of greatest value for companies when considering the technologies. Cloud and file sharing solutions ranked as the most effective collaboration technologies. Instant chat / instant messaging was an aspect of collaboration that is not front of mind yet, though the number of applications that offer this functionality are growing in quantity.

 

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What Comscentre delivers

Comscentre’s collaboration solutions empower and enable businesses to focus less on the activity and stress of their communication tools, and focus more on the opportunities and outcomes of collaboration itself. It is fundamental to us that we allow businesses to focus on their core competencies, while we ensure the communications environment is best managed to perform at the optimum every day.

Talk to us today about designing and deploying a collaboration solution that is tailor-made for your business.

Download your copy of the report here: HBRAS_Final_Report_Todays_Teams.

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04 Apr

Product News – Cisco Spark Board

In late January, Cisco released their latest piece of collaboration hardware, and further built out Cisco Spark as the long-term conferencing platform, in the form of the Cisco Spark Board.

The device features heavily in plans for the reshaping of the conferencing experience within organisations. In the long-term, the Cisco Spark platform will encapsulate present instant messaging (Cisco Jabber), presence and web conferencing (WebEx) technologies.

The Cisco Spark Board has been designed as the centrepiece for collaboration within organisations, effectively replacing the whiteboard, flip-chart, projector, audio conferencing and/or video conferencing in meeting rooms around the world with a consolidated Smart device that delivers connectivity to workers within proximity or remote / work-from-home employees. On the global scale, 20 per cent of global orders for the device have already come from Australia.

It features the newest componentry available at assembly: a Smart touchscreen with 4K-Quality for video content and specially engineered microphones for acoustic optimisation. In terms of sizing, the first option, 55-inch, has already hit the market – though is highly sought-after and deliveries will be delayed due to the high demand. Meanwhile, a 70-inch version is scheduled for release later this year.

For the release of the Cisco Spark Board, we have available demo devices that can be shipped to customers for Proofs of Concept. If the Cisco Spark Board is something you’d like to trial at Head Office or elsewhere get in contact with your local Comscentre Account Manager or send the request to sales@comscentre.com and we can assist in scoping out the project.

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