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IBM collaboration portfolio boosted by XCC acquisition

Analysts discuss IBM strengthening Connections by acquiring an intranet platform, Mitel's IoT and collaboration application, and the growing need for cloud-based security services.

The IBM collaboration portfolio has lacked investment and features, but a recent acquisition could boost IBM's social platform, according to one industry expert.

IBM's acquisition last month of Intranet platform TIMETOACT XCC should strengthen the IBM Connections platform, said Alan Lepofsky, an analyst at Constellation Research Inc., an advisory firm based in Cupertino, Calif.

IBM Connections is a solid community platform, Lepofsky said, but it lacks features to make it a true corporate intranet. With the addition of XCC, customers will have access to more features, such as custom page layouts and branding and the ability to install, configure and manage the service on a single platform.

IBM plans to bundle XCC with Connections in the third quarter of 2017 as a new offering called IBM Connections Engagement Center.

Lepofsky said he has criticized the IBM collaboration portfolio in the past for a lack of investment, but he sees the XCC acquisition as a good move to bolster Connections as a corporate intranet platform. The IBM collaboration portfolio faces competition from the likes of Microsoft SharePoint, Google Sites and Igloo.

Read more about why Lepofsky said the IBM collaboration portfolio must become more aggressive to grow its customer base.

Mitel IoT collaboration app cleared for takeoff

Unified communications (UC) provider Mitel has demonstrated an application that melds UC, collaboration and the internet of things.

The IoT collaboration app is used with defibrillators at the Charles de Gaulle Airport in France. The doors to the defibrillators are equipped with a network-connected sensor. When the door of the defibrillator is opened, an app sends a notification to emergency response teams containing the location of the defibrillator. The response teams can discuss or dispatch resources using chat and real-time communications.

Andrew Nilssen, analyst at Duxbury, Mass.-based Wainhouse Research, said he found the app's technology quite interesting. The automated notification system is powered by HubOne, a Mitel service provider. HubOne uses Mitel APIs and infrastructure to engage response teams via text or audio.

Read more about how Nilssen said IoT is an interesting integration point for UC and collaboration.

Growing cloud adoption leads to new security issues

The growth in cloud adoption has prompted new security concerns, according to a blog from Jennifer Adams, analyst at research and advisory firm Forrester Research based in Cambridge, Mass.

Adams writes new cloud security challenges have emerged because traditional perimeter-based security tools do little to protect cloud-based workloads. But organizations need improved security as more mission-critical apps and data are moving to the cloud.

However, new cloud-based security services are emerging to meet organizations' new security needs.

According to Adams, spending on global cloud security services is expected to reach $3.5 billion by 2021. She writes that organizations are spending on four types of cloud-based security services: cloud security gateways, centralized cloud security management, hypervisor security, and native infrastructure-as-a-service and platform-as-a-service security.

Read more about how Adams says traditional security vendors are addressing cloud security.

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