This week we explored the concept of a hybrid workplace as a viable option to overcome the challenges of months of continuous remote work. At BlueJeans, we think of hybrid work as a combination of remote work augmented with some employees working in the office at certain times. This model prioritizes flexibility, with a conscious effort to provide all employees with options to collaborate effectively and safely, regardless of where they are.
If you are using Microsoft Teams and are thinking about hybrid work, you are most likely wondering how to get your conference rooms ready with Microsoft Teams. If you already have standards-based conferencing devices in your offices and want to use them with Microsoft Teams, you can consider using Cloud Video Interop (CVI). BlueJeans Gateway for Microsoft Teams is a pure-Saas Microsoft Certified CVI solution.
In September 2020, Recon Research, a market research, analyst, and consulting firm focused on the enterprise communications space, conducted a thorough evaluation of BlueJeans Gateway for Microsoft Teams.
According to Recon Research, "there are millions of standards-based video conferencing systems in meeting rooms around the world that are not compatible with Microsoft Teams. Cloud video interop services such as the Gateway can help organizations bridge the gap between their legacy video systems (and clients) and Microsoft Teams. The ability to include both standards-based meeting rooms and Microsoft Teams users in meetings is especially critical given today’s hybrid, multi-location workforce."
Recon Research states that one of the critical differentiators for BlueJeans Gateway is how easy it is for customers to try the service before purchase. Recon tested the different ways customers can try BlueJeans Gateway CVI and shared their experience:
- Take a Test Drive – the quickest and easiest way to test the service is to use the BlueJeans Gateway to join a four-hour Microsoft Teams meeting hosted within a BlueJeans environment. Recon Research experienced Cloud Video Interoperability using the BlueJeans Gateway Test Drive in less than 15 minutes. Recon conducted numerous Microsoft Teams test calls with content sharing, including Microsoft Teams users, MTR systems, and several SIP and H.323 systems. In all cases, Recon reports, all of the different systems and users connected successfully to the test meetings.
- Try for Free – another option is to activate a free 30-day trial of the Gateway service within an organization’s environment. Users can self-install the Gateway using an interactive setup wizard after creating an account using their Microsoft tenant.
For both options, Recon Research states that the video and audio experience provided by the BlueJeans Gateway for Microsoft Teams was excellent throughout testing. “While using the BlueJeans Gateway, Microsoft Teams users enjoy a native Teams experience, and SIP / H.323 users enjoy a native SIP / H.323 experience. After conducting dozens of test calls, our team could barely tell the difference between the Microsoft Teams and SIP meeting experience.”
“Teams users could even mute, remove, or promote SIP participants into presenters during the meeting," they report. The Recon Research team also highlighted the Gateway's ability to ensure content sharing, access control, and encrypted connections during Teams calls.
In their evaluation, Recon Research emphasized that BlueJeans Gateway removes barriers for organizations to try the solution and purchase licenses online, which creates a seamless experience. The Per Room licensing model is simple – organizations need one license per endpoint. This plan, available for monthly or annual billing, is perfect for organizations that want to connect room systems to Microsoft Teams but avoid planning for usage. For organizations looking for a customized option, concurrent meeting plans and enterprise-wide licensing plans are available through Sales.
Additionally, organizations can include add-ons to their Gateway deployment, such as Trusted Rooms, Custom URLs, and splash screens. Learn more about the new and upcoming feature releases in BlueJeans Gateway for Microsoft Teams such as support for Microsoft Teams Together mode and 7x7 Gallery View.