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Insider Lite | TalkingPointz - Issue #23

It’s been about 2 months since I did a newsletter - soo much for “near weekly.” Recovering from a major wildfire takes a lot of effort. Meanwhile, the UCC industry woke up. Jan and Feb were relatively quiet, plenty of time to deal with a personal disaster. Next thing I know its April.
March - Lumen kicked off the month with its annual analyst event for the first time since 2020. Since these are normally annual events, there’s a recurring theme emerging - WOW, so much has changed in a year. Of course, it’s not a year. The whole isolating pandemic is a time-blur.
I don’t know if/when we can say the pandemic is over, but Lumen’s analyst event feels like bookends. Jan 2020 and March 2022. Actually, there were two bookends: Avaya had a big AR event in Feb 2020 and hosted an event in Dec 2021.
But March 2022 was insane. 8x8 and Mitel decided to host virtual events. The pre-EC22 briefings felt like speed-dating. We did the Innovation Showcase judging, I participated in a Dialpad customer event and an 8x8 webinar. Gartner decided to drop its CCaaS MQ RFI which generated a ton of WTFs? Then came EC22 and even more news.
Evan and I still managed to get our two podcast interviews posted. I got four posts up on NoJitter and my first post on CXToday. I also published a white paper for Webex CC on Chromebooks. That was all the first three weeks of March. I should also mention we found and moved into our fifth home this year in the middle of the month.
EC itself was super content packed. It was great to see (and meet) so many colleagues. One of my super strengths is knowing the shortest path between any two locations in the Gaylord Palms. However, I was surprised they added a whole new wing during the pandemic. At least they didn’t move the pool again, that really thru me off about 10 years ago.
Out of EC and back into the fire. Literally, I visited my home and they removed all the ceilings and carpet. As the snow melts we are discovering how severe the landscaping damage is. I have learned way more than I ever wanted to know about insurance. No matter how well you think you are covered, you aren’t.
Suddenly it was time for the March Insider Report - with a lot more news to cover than usual. I was finishing that up over the March/April weekend when we had to evacuate our rental for yet another Boulder fire (there was another nearby fire yesterday too).
April is looking a little more sane. No moves (or fires) planned this month. I will be at the Channel Partners conference.

EC Thoughts
I thought EC22 was fantastic. It’s always a busy week, but per above this time I arrived exhausted. I fell asleep on the flight to MCO. I am still living EC22, watching keynotes and sessions online that I missed live.
I am working up a research note on EC22. Each year, I look at the event as whole to identify trends. EC provides me an annual snapshot of the industry. This year, it was a three year gap between in-person events at the Gaylord. Needless to say ALOT has changed in enterprise comms during this pandemic.
For example, for the first time EC was a CC show. In addition to the CX themed Innovation Showcase, five of the six keynotes were speakers/providers with CCaaS solutions (all six if you count Microsoft). It feels like the majority of announcements were CX related. Also the first EC with two female keynote speakers (two more than usual).
Its surprising how much the vendor landscape is changing. The giants of the past were all specialized. Hardware companies such as Nortel, Ericsson, and Rockwell had the big booths. Today, comms are software-based or cloud-delivered applications.
Amazon, Google, and Microsoft were all keynote presenters - they are also among the largest companies in the world. The implications of this shift are significant. Voice and real-time comms are simultaneously more important than ever (thus part of the mega-co portfolio) and less important (as it’s not what drives the mega-cos). We saw several new vendors, and several familiar brands were missing.
More to say on EC22 in an upcoming report. Two reports planned this month: EC22 and Conversational AI.
The TalkingHeadz Podcast
Using AI in the CC with Gregg Johnson of Invoca | TalkingPointz
TalkingHeadz with Josh Little of Volley | TalkingPointz
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Dave Michels

Speaker, author, founder of TalkingPointz. I'm a video, voice, messaging protagonist. I publish the TalkingPointz Insider Report. @NoJitter

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