Telecommunications giant Polycom recently hosted a UC Collaboration webinar. I was fortunate enough to attend, and I learned a lot about Polycom's available and upcoming platforms.

In order to understand the content of the webinar, first, let's define “Unified Communications.” Unified communications is the integration of many real time communications platforms and also non-real time platforms. Primarily, this refers to voice, and secondarily to video, but it also encompasses IM/Chat/SMS, interactive whiteboards, conference calls, fax, and more. Second, unified communications refers to the number of different tools people use to communicate, such as computers, tablets, smartphones, each with its own operating system (Windows, iOS, Android), which must have interoperability. This is known as “BYOD,” or “Bring Your Own Device.”

The biggest takeaway I got from the webinar is that the user experience (the “top of the pond”), must be as smooth and elegant as possible, while the underlying platform (“under the water”) is an insanely complex system of hardware and software working in tandem, running algorithms and operations, checking compatibility and interoperability, noticing changes in bandwidth, processing power, and even human body language, then making adjustments in nanoseconds.

To this end, they feature a number of products, but the clear spotlight was on a videoconferencing device called The Polycom EagleEye Director. The Polycom EagleEye Director automatically zooms in on who is speaking, making your business meetings look like a live television show.