Communications Blog • 7 MIN READ

How AI is changing Unified Communications and Collaboration

Everyone has an opinion about Artificial Intelligence (AI) and its uses. Whether you view AI as a boon to business, or a threat, the virtual reality is that the power of AI has infiltrated almost everything we do in the business world today.

AI is the future, not just a technology fad, and organizations are beginning to understand the general consensus that if they don’t accept it – they will fall behind.

As predicted, AI is poised to revolutionize productivity in the workplace, and alter the way we consume goods and services. More and more organizations across a vast range of industries are investing in AI, keen to push the boundaries of what’s possible with new AI technologies.

While there are different types of AI, used for specific functions in various industries, in this blog, we’ll investigate the transformative role of AI in unified communications and collaboration (UC&C), and what’s in store as AI technology continues to evolve.

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Image source: Tech Target

Understanding AI in UC&C

Until now, communication has relied on email, SMS, social media, and other online services that provide us with information, messages, and ads.

As we move further into the digital age, these methods are becoming more one-dimensional and less effective for interpersonal communication and workplace efficiency.

The key uses for AI in unified communications is to increase productivity and simplify processes. By training machines, AI can relieve the burden of certain trivial, or repetitive tasks, and allow teams to concentrate on more important responsibilities.

AI has already made its mark on communication with voice assistants like Siri and Alexa and is now shaping the future of UC&C.

With language processing capabilities, data contextualization, and the ability to offer deep insights into customer experience, AI is helping to rapidly improve communication – and therefore workplace efficiency.

Chatbots and virtual assistants

Global chatbot statistics show that in the last decade, the market has expanded enormously. With growth expectations of 25% by 2024, chatbots and virtual assistants are fast replacing or at least augmenting human involvement in customer service. They can provide instant responses to inquiries, and even navigate language barriers through translation services.

Speech analysis

With its ability to analyze speech patterns, AI can help with customer satisfaction by detecting various emotions in a person’s voice. It can also be invaluable in real time translation for those with language communication difficulties.


Speech-to-text technology is not new, but it has evolved considerably over the years, as AI has made itself known in the realms of UC&C. AI can process speech in real time, making it a powerful tool that increases productivity, for example alleviating the need to take notes at meetings. Additionally, once speech is converted to text, it becomes searchable and shareable, adding another layer of business value.

Meeting summaries

AI applications can create customized meeting summaries for any number of team members, converting speech into digital form. This makes it compatible with chat threads and Word documents as data streams, enabling participants to quickly generate summary reports and share with those who couldn’t attend.


AI can utilize facial recognition and biometrics for authentication for starting a meeting, accessing files, or entering meeting spaces. These methods increase efficiency and save time throughout the collaboration process by doing away with physical ID cards, passwords, or two-factor authentication.

Contextual AI

Context is an important foundational element of Machine Learning (ML). It’s the key to making your artificial intelligence rival that of a human.

The incredibly intuitive nature of contextual AI enables systems to interpret information in the same way a human would. It enables AI systems such as chatbots and virtual assistants to have an actual human-like interpretation of language, audio, video, and images, instead of behaving as a computer would.

Contextual AI can analyze historical, situational, and cultural elements of data, and use that context to determine the most suitable outcome for the end user.

It can also give systems the ability to:

  • Create knowledge by picking up patterns and features of data in context and gain a richer understanding of a situation. In effect, it enables your AI system to learn without being supervised.
  • Transfer or exchange knowledge by taking what it learned from one context and applying it to another for better performance.
  • Problem-solving by learning from each interaction to determine what the end-user really needs in real time.

AI and the Internet of Things (IoT)

The Internet of Things is playing a huge role in increasing communication and connection, both in the everyday world and for businesses globally.

IoT can connect objects to the internet via embedded devices, meaning that seamless communication is possible between people, processes, and things.

IoT can capture a massive amount of data from multiple sources. However, all this data from countless numbers of IoT devices, makes it complex to collect, process, and analyze.

Combining AI and IoT is redefining the way industries, organizations and even economies function. This amalgamation creates intelligent machines that simulate smart behavior, offer creativity, and unlock responses, with little or no human interference.

While IoT deals with devices interacting using the internet, AI makes the devices learn from their data and experience, providing the perfect symbiosis of technology.

Challenges of adopting AI in UC&C

There are some concerns and challenges with the use of AI in unified communications, including:

  • Accuracy can be issue, as predictive machine learning models can give imperfect results.
  • Job security, the constant improvements in conversational AI and the automation of tasks can be viewed as having a potential negative impact on the jobs of customer service professionals.
  • Security could be at risk as the combination of AI and UC creates a greater area of compromise when using video, voice, text, and file sharing solutions.

The future of AI and UC&C

With ever-evolving and improving algorithms, the predictive capabilities of artificial intelligence will be used in new and innovative ways to boost operational efficiency within the workplace.

For example, being able to predict operational delays and pre-empt downtime, AI will have the ability to liaise with users to find the best solutions.

Organizations understand customer experience is of paramount importance, and as such, are constantly seeking ways to improve how to use AI and machine learning to interact with consumers.

Combining unified communications and AI means the development of smarter chatbots, improvements in personalization for customers, and therefore an increase in customer retention for businesses.

AI is continuing to evolve day by day, and its power to change the way we work, communicate, and collaborate is increasing.

The benefits, besides greater efficiency in the workplace, are that AI can free up employees to be more creative and productive by removing the drudgery of routine tasks.

It can help alleviate the stress of bad customer interactions.

And it can simplify the mammoth task of collating, analyzing and processing complex data to help organizations achieve their business objectives.

Topics: Multi-Technology Communications Customer experience Collaborate

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