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Unify takes a big bet on Circuit

Unify Circuit
Unify Circuit

How do you integrate your various streams of conversation into a central dashboard? How do you synchronise, log and manage bits and voice together on one single window pane?

Unify claims to have the answer with Circuit, its next-generation communication and collaboration platform. Dean Douglas and Stefan Ried, the company's CEO and CTO respectively, seem convinced that it could be the panacea for enterprise collaboration and communication troubles.

The company relied on an array of tried-and-trusted open source technologies like Cassandra to build a cloud-based, mobile-friendly service and says that its unique selling point is its expertise in making the solution business-ready.

"The hard part is the media server" claims Douglas. But there's more; one of Circuit's forte is the ability to handle 200 people concurrently in a video conference thanks to WebRTC. Beyond those numbers, the solution is constrained by the host CPU rather than bandwidth.

In addition, it would be cumbersome to get 200 faces on one window pane to interact. Instead, Circuit can switch between video conference and broadcasting.

But the real interesting part is what Circuit could potentially be used for. Because its API is opened, developers can use it as a platform to achieve surprisingly things especially in the realm of M2M or IoT.

Reid mentioned the example of a Tesla car in Germany that could communicate with someone's Circuit-enabled phone to allow the latter to video conference only when the car is in autonomous mode.

Partnerships the key

A lot of other IFTTT (If this then that) scenarios can be built using Circuit as the underlying platform. It makes it simpler for them to do so and helps Unify extend its ecosystem, not only in text or audio but also in video.

Partnering is a key strategy to build momentum behind the solution, said Ried and the recent announcement that Unify was partnering with OpenExchange with its 100+ million users, goes in that direction.

Desire Athow

Managing Editor, TechRadar Pro

Désiré has been musing and writing about technology during a career spanning four decades. He dabbled in website building and web hosting when DHTML and frames were en vogue and started writing about the impact of technology on society just before the start of the Y2K hysteria at the turn of the last millennium. Then followed a weekly tech column in a local business magazine in Mauritius, a late night tech radio programme called Clicplus and a freelancing gig at the now-defunct, Theinquirer, with the legendary Mike Magee as mentor. Following an eight-year stint at ITProPortal.com where he discovered the joys of global techfests, Désiré now heads up TechRadar Pro. He has an affinity for anything hardware and staunchly refuses to stop writing reviews of obscure products or cover niche B2B software-as-a-service providers.