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NEWS FLASH:  What will be the future state of the healthcare industry as we look out to 2025 and beyond?  Take Polycom’s global Healthcare survey now to have your say.


Why is the healthcare industry one of the most advanced when it comes to using video collaboration to drive business, namely patient care?  I think the answer is three fold:


  1. Increasing numbers of patients – and in Asia we are seeing an ageing population that is going to play into this.
  2. Spiraling costs of healthcare delivery – therefore the industry needs to leverage technological solutions to help peg cost whilst still maintaining patient care.
  3. Distributed communities – again across Asia Pacific we have both the largest populations globally and some of the largest geographies.

The healthcare video here shows how the medical staff are leveraging tablet technology, according to Comp TIA in 2012 25% of healthcare practices were already using tablet devices.  With Gartner’s prediction that PCs, tablets, ultramobiles and mobile phones will reach 2.5 billion units shipped in 2014  the number being used in industries such as healthcare is set to sky rocket.


Ease of use is now a key part of the equation, Polycom provides free of charge from Android and Apple stores our enterprise grade video collaboration software.  Add to this, Polycom innovations such as SmartPairing that allows a user to easily move a video call from your tablet device and easily add that caller to a group of people meeting on a room based system, tablet devices start to become a very powerful tool when conducting and controlling video collaboration.


Applications and uses such as those depicted in this video are only the start as businesses look to harness the power of human collaboration.


Healthcare Video (below)


  • In this 1 minute video we show the Future of Healthcare and how tablet devices are changing the way we engage and manage patient care. In fact the Future is NOW!!
  • The opening scene shows a medical professional using his tablet to share a CT scan of the patient’s brain with the other medical staff.
  • With the use of Polycom’s innovative SmartPairing technology the medical professional can seamlessly share the image from the tablet to the conference screen, in this case a smartboard.
  • The medical professional can then annotate the record to highlight any areas of concern or interest – this is in real time with all participants using a tablet devices.



Super Collector

A guest post from Marci Powell, Polycom’s Global Director for Education, on her recent trip to Australia where she attendended and presented at EduTECH (Australasia’s largest annual education technology conference and exhibition)


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Polycom’s Global Director for Education, Marci Powell, has over 15 years’ experience in the education industry and in her curre

nt role works with educational institutions to help them integrate and utilise Polycom solutions to meet their needs. She recently attended and presented at EduTECH, Australasia’s largest annual education technology conference and exhibition, highlighting the power of video collaboration with the education industry.


I just returned from a whirlwind of activity in Australia where I spoke at EduTECH (3rd – 5th June), probably one of the largest educational technology shows in the world. Over 6500 attendees from the education and training sector were in attendance with numerous vendors showing the latest developments within the education industry.


Key Takeaways from EduTECH:


  • The most common discussion I had over the two days was those interested in or already extending their reach. Those who need to provide access to rural students enabling them to have access to advanced courses or specialty programs as well as valuable content, resources and student services. 
  • Education institutions must develop students as global citizens and deliver programs that attract talented students and teachers from throughout the world. Students expect greater access and demand a highly personalized learning environment and more robust student services.
  • Without transforming the learning environment and extending the reach, institutions will fall short of providing adequately for their stakeholders and community. Successful institutions must not only compete with other schools but also with demands students face at work and home. 
  • Flexible, affordable and accessible collaborative environments, transformed learning experiences, enriched curriculum, interactive/ engaging lessons and improved learning outcomes.
  • Video collaboration solutions support work/teaching across a network of dispersed locations, allowing flexibility in how, when and where employees work, faculty teach and students learn because they are able to collaborate with colleagues/peers, face to face. 
  • Video collaboration solutions support work/teaching across a network of dispersed locations, allowing flexibility in how, when and where employees work, faculty teach and students learn because they are able to collaborate with colleagues/peers, face to face. 
  • Content in education is key and the ability to share in real time or download as part of a revision cycle is critical.


Bringing the world to EduTECH


We also hosted several outstanding content providers to take attendees on virtual field trips (VFT) from Australia to Canada to New York. The Manhattan School of Music (MSM) shared an example of one of their teacher-voted- “Pinnacle Award” programs. What was fun for me was that their jazz singer is Croatian who got her undergraduate from University of Zagreb and is a MSM for her post-graduate degree.


Another fun moment from EduTECH was the programming provided by Fizzics Education LTD as they conducted science experiments virtually with teachers in the booth. I totally enjoyed the liquid nitrogen lesson but I must say I was worried we might make a huge mess by exploding something. Fortunately, no mess and lots of fun.


Another aspect of EduTECH that impressed a lot (outside of the exhibit hall) was the calibre of keynote and spotlight speakers that were presenting. Though their approaches were different, each still hit on what I see as some of the most prevailing challenges and trends in education today. From K-12 through the workplace, the conference programme was designed to have us consider how education must change to prepare students from their future and not our past. Many touched on the importance of teaching applied skills: critical thinking, problem solving, communication and team work.  This completely fits in line with my message regarding the important role video communications plays in not only providing a platform for a new way of teaching and learning, but emulates the workplace. Using video conferencing to communicate and work in geographically dispersed teams to solve problems not only develops ones critical thinking abilities, it develops those applied skills and prepares students for the workplace environment.


Sir Ken Robinson encouraged us to take a strategic and visionary look at the future of training and development and examine how technology is being used for workforce development to up skill, train, motivate, test and monitor. We were to consider how employees learn, develop and achieve. In Sir Ken’s stirring talk, he told us how to get out of the educational "death valley" we now face, and how to nurture our youngest generations with a climate of possibility. Click here to see more.


From K-12 through the workplace, the conference programme was designed to have us consider how education must change to prepare students from their future and not our past. Many touched on the importance of teaching applied skills: critical thinking, problem solving, communication and team work.  This completely fits in line with my message regarding the important role video communications plays in not only providing a platform for a new way of teaching and learning, but emulates the workplace. Using video conferencing to communicate and work in geographically dispersed teams to solve problems not only develops ones critical thinking abilities, it develops those applied skills and prepares students for the workplace environment.


It was nice to catch up with my friends at AARNet, Australia’s academic and education research network.  They have served and continue to serve quite well many education institutions, primary through tertiary. I want to thank them for providing bandwidth to the conference that made accessibility for all attendees and exhibitors optimum.


Below: Polycom's Marci Powell presenting at EduTECH whilst also defying distance by collaborating with Manhattan School of Music and Fizzics Education via video

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Super Collector

Healthcare as a business vertical seems to be at the cutting edge of deploying IT to facilitate mission critical operations. The video below demonstrates how effective HD audio can be in delivering crystal clear audio communication – a must have in any environment that may be dispensing patient care.



The possibilities across other industries and business applications are endless. Wherever verbal communication with remote parties is required, HD is always better than SD.


But why?


Take the Polycom SoundStation IP 7000. It features Polycom HD Voice technology which boosts productivity by reducing listener fatigue. It turns ordinary conference calls into crystal-clear interactive conversations. It delivers high-fidelity audio from 160 Hz to 22 kHz, capturing both the deeper lows and higher frequencies of the human voice for conference calls that sound as natural as being there.


Polycom’s iconic SoundStation conference phones are the industry standard and have become a mainstay of meeting rooms throughout the world. But we’ve continued to innovate, including the introduction of echo cancellation and background noise reduction technology. Today, Polycom offers a suite of conference phone options, each specifically designed for different environments. These include:


  • Conference phones designed to meet the acoustic requirements of different types of rooms, such as the Polycom SoundStation IP 7000 solution for larger conference rooms, and the Polycom SoundStation IP 5000 phone for smaller meeting rooms and executive offices
  • The SoundStation Duo conference phone that includes both analogue and IP connectivity to ensure your investment is protected if your type of connectivity changes in future
  • Models designed for analog, digital PBX, and VoIP environments, each with unique features that take advantage of the benefits provided by the different types of telephony environments
  • And my favourite: the Polycom SoundStation2W wireless conference phone that offers the ultimate in mobility. It can be used in multiple offices or conference rooms, or can be connected to a mobile phone for conference calls from nearly anywhere.


Super Collector

Across Asia Pacific, we regularly see how video collaboration enables highly effective international communication and knowledge sharing. Last Saturday, this spotlight was placed on the American First Lady, Michelle Obama when she visited the Stanford Center at Peking University in Beijing.


Addressing those gathered, the First Lady said that study abroad allows students to realise that countries all have a stake in each other's success as part of a global community. Following her speech, she then held a conversation with students at the Stanford campus in the United States and did so using the Polycom RealPresence Immersive Suites at both locations. Stanford University has posted the story of the visit in full which can be read here.


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The use of immersive videoconferencing technology by a globally recognisable figure, such as the First Lady of the United States, demonstrated that there is a need for a true visual human experience to bring two cultures together that are many thousands of miles apart. Video meetings today often bring together participants from multiple countries and cultures, which gives businesses and organisations the ability to share knowledge, make complex decisions more quickly, build greater trust among colleagues and customers, and foster greater understanding of challenges and opportunities.


Now more than ever we need to consider how to integrate immersive videoconferencing experiences into our business practices.  Across Asia Pacific we are seeing continued interest in our immersive solutions and back in February this year, Polycom announced a range of new and exciting solutions to the market. Amongst these is the next generation of the RealPresence Immersive Studio, taking the immersive technology that the First Lady Michelle Obama experienced to the next level.



























Watch this video for a tour of the new RealPresence Immersive Studio. It can also be viewed on YouTube.


The new immersive studio will offer an incredible experience not only within an education environment, but also in healthcare, government, enterprise and creative environments providing realistic face-to-face human collaboration that will truly help organisations within Asia Pacific and around the globe to defy distance.


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After Polycom’s recent ‘TEAM Polycom’ Partner Conference 2014 in Canada, many of the attending analysts have commented positively on the direction that Polycom is taking and how key strategic partnerships have started to show very tangible results.


Zeus Kerravala from ZK Research, who attended, was one of the key analysts present at this conference. Having read what he had to say about the power and value of Polycom and Microsoft Lync 2013 in his report, (read it here) I believe that sharing with you one of our latest customer stories from Asia Pacific is very timely.


What is crystal clear to me, and this applies across Asia Pacific is that more and more organisations need to collaborate across a network of offices and with dispersed customers and partners. Integrated video and voice solutions such as Polycom and Lync 2013 are helping them to defy distance.


This customer, the National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research (NIWA) is based in New Zealand. There’s is a great example of why Microsoft Lync 2013 and Polycom are great on their own, yet even better together.



(If the video is slow to load, you can also watch it on YouTube by clicking HERE.)


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Polycom recently embarked on its largest ever integrated marketing campaign around how businesses, governments and organisations can Defy Distance. This is not just defying the distance between geographies but also how do you close the distance between people’s thinking, or between two departments.


This got me thinking about how do I Defy Distance as a marketer, especially as I have a regional role. Considering that the essence of the marketing campaign is to speak to professionals working across different business functions, I wondered if I actually use the collaboration tools available to me as a marketing professional. The overwhelming answer to this question was yes!


I can break these down into four key marketing imperatives for me.


Marketing Use 1:  My department

Three of the team may be based in Singapore but the fourth is Melbourne based. Why Melbourne? Well we had an opportunity to create a new role and this person happened to be the best person for that role. So working closely with a remote team member – I can have multiple video calls daily with Melbourne. This allows me to check in with him, provide advice, review work in progress and generally ensure that the remote team member is plugged in.


Marketing Use 2:  Video helps me to engage my regional constituents

We cover a large part of Asia Pacific in our regional roles – India, Japan and Korea through to Southeast Asia, and Australia and New Zealand. So again I engage with our marketing teams and country executives over video to ensure they understand the scope of what we are covering and that I get effective buy in from them. I can ensure through visual signals that the remote teams I provide specialist support to do in fact understand a project or a strategic direction that we are taking. This is particularly important for our markets where English may not be the first language.


Marketing Use 3:  Trusted Advisor

A key role as a corporate communications specialist is to be a trusted advisor to our leadership team, both the APAC management that I report into and our US Corporate team.

Video allows me to effectively engage with each of these key stakeholders, and I can share relevant content real time when developing communications strategies to support their business objectives.

Historically I would have needed to be present physically for many of these meetings, making it both impractical and likely that the local leader would push on and perhaps only engage with me when it was vitally important. Having high definition, enterprise quality video, with inherent security protocols, means that I can be there each and every time to ensure that I can offer timely counsel.


Marketing Use 4:  A seat at the table

Key in any global organisation is having a voice. The ability to easily participate in a meeting anywhere and at any time over video means that I do have a seat at the leadership table, even though it may be a virtual one it is again as good as being there. 80 per cent of my weekly meetings are with people outside of my home country, Singapore therefore video is the only way that I can effectively attend all of them – until of course we can in fact one day “beam me up”.


So key for me are the tools that help me do my role better and more effectively and video certainly is a key part of how I Defy Distance on a daily basis.


If you’re keen to find out more about how marketing professionals are benefiting from video and voice collaboration tools, you can visit this dedicated page.


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Last month we launched the biggest marketing campaign in our company’s history centred on organisations ‘defying distance’ by using video.


This got me thinking about what does this really mean for organisations today? Is this really just about travel costs?  The simple answer is no, it is so much more.  We recently completed a video case study with one of our customers in New Zealand, the Canterbury and West Coast District Health Board.  Interestingly a paediatrician has used video collaboration to provide lifesaving medical care to children in remote parts of New Zealand.



It’s inspiring to see how medical professionals are transforming lives by using a range of communications technology. Video allows the parents increased access and connectivity to what is going on with their child – something that must be a great comfort to them during such a stressful time. As you can see, the specialist can also use his own device, in this case a tablet, to allow him to consult even from his home.


We live in a world filled with distance. Distance between problem and solution, confusion and understanding, fiction and fact, and as we see here: even sickness and treatment. The solution in the video clearly defies more than just the physical distance between the doctor and the family.


If a paediatrician can deploy video collaboration solutions to help critically ill children imagine what the rest of us can do in our day to day working lives, regardless of the industry we work in. Here is some inspiration to get you thinking about video in ways you might not have before. I look forward to your thoughts on this and to sharing further examples with you in the future.


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As a marketer who has worked across the region, I have long held the belief that Asia Pacific companies would use tools that help boost their productivity and communication, in order to improve time to market and establish themselves as global powerhouses.


Companies here are moving ahead of the global curve as they have always had to defy distance and collaborate effectively with dispersed work teams. We have just completed an interesting exercise by analysing this year’s Forbes Asia Fab 50 list. We found that 74 per cent of these top performing companies use Polycom for their collaboration needs. 


I predicted as we started this decade that most of our solutions would be deployed outside the boardroom and that they would be at the leading edge of our customers’ mission critical operations – and that is now being realised.  Dr Reddy’s Laboratories, a Polycom customer who features in this year’s Asia Fab 50 is a great example of a leading pharmaceutical company in India deploying video globally to improve the approval process and time to market for their products. You can read more about how Polycom serves the majority of the Asia Fab 50 here and read about Dr. Reddy’s here.


When you look across the list of Asian companies that made this year’s Forbes list, as you would expect, China and India do dominate in terms of numbers of companies represented. But what is fascinating is that these companies cut across all industries: electronics; technology; pharmaceutical; paint manufacturing; consumer and luxury goods; and financial just to call out a few. Companies in every industry have developed processes and practices that use voice and video collaboration to improve the way they do business – from customer service at the front end through to improved quality control at the back end. 


I certainly look forward to sharing the innovative ways in which leading companies are transforming their business thanks to unified communications and collaboration in future blog posts.

The on-demand webcast about Polycom's new breakthrough solutions is available for replay. Watch it now
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