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Google Counters Microsoft With RingCentral Offering

Unified Communications

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RingCentral has teamed up with Google in an effort to stay at the top of the enterprise communications sector.

RingCentral's Richard BorensteinRingCentral announced Wednesday that it will offer a bundle that integrates Google Apps, Google Hangouts and RingCentral Office. It’s a move Richard Borenstein, senior vice president of Business Development at RingCentral, says will offer organizations a communications alternative to Microsoft’s Skype for Business.

“Google has succeeded in many, many areas, and now they too are going after the enterprise, and they are doing so with a best-of-breed cloud solution, and we’re a big part of that,” Borenstein told Channel Partners.

Borenstein said RingCentral’s size and its open API platform helped make it an ideal candidate for Google.

“What we’re seeing is, together, Google and RingCentral can bring best-of-breed that can make customers happy,” he said.{ad}

The search-engine giant had already been partnering with RingCentral, but Borenstein said Google is making a more concerted effort than before to tackle the “massive greenfield” that is cloud. The new agreement with RingCentral ups the stakes in the competition against Microsoft, which has been pushing Skype for Business.

“Microsoft has done very well on the productivity side, but communications is tough to build from scratch,” Borenstein said. “It’s hard to think they’re just going to very quickly become the magic quadrant leader or the largest in the space.”

Borenstein said RingCentral also has integrations with Microsoft’s stack and makes a point of being vendor-agnostic.

“We don’t prescribe to companies what we think they should use. We just bring our unified communications piece to work with whatever companies have already invested in. It works out of the box, so to speak, with everything,” he said.

But he said Skype for Business is simply not strong enough yet, giving RingCentral “a huge opportunity to fill those shoes.”

“[Office] 365 is a good productivity suite, but Skype for Business is obviously lacking in terms of capability sets. So we get a lot of business from folks using Office 365 who use their RingCentral component as their communication stack,” he said.

The RingCentral Office Google Edition bundle costs $30 per user and will be sold through the channel at first. Longtime Google for Work partner Agosto is the first to come on board with the bundle.

“This new integrated offering is a great way to add to our portfolio of services and help more businesses migrate their communications applications to the cloud too,” said Aric Bandy, president of Agosto.


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