Networking News

CRN’s 2020 Products Of The Year

Kyle Alspach

CRN editors compiled the top partner-friendly products and services that launched over the past year, then turned to solution providers to choose the winners.




Microsoft has pushed a rapid pace of development for the Teams collaboration app as users have surged in 2020. In particular, Teams has received a series of major upgrades around its video meeting capabilities—such as with a larger gallery view and the ability to pop out separate windows for meetings in the app. Microsoft is also aiming to make one of the newest Teams features into the next big game-changer for videoconferencing. Together Mode places participants into a shared virtual background, which helps people to feel more like they’re sitting in the same room—and more capable of picking up nonverbal cues. Microsoft has also tackled personal productivity within Teams, such as with the tasks app. The app offers a unified view within Teams of tasks across different apps, including Planner, Microsoft To Do and Outlook.

Subcategory Winner—Revenue and Profit: RingCentral

Recent RingCentral updates have included the launch of RingCentral Video, which integrates video chat with RingCentral’s UCaaS platform—providing a comprehensive messaging, video and phone offering for businesses of all sizes. RingCentral enables users to easily switch between methods of communication without leaving the app, and the app can be accessed from any browser without the need to download it.

Finalist: Cisco Webex

Cisco’s WebEx collaboration platform has featured enhancements such as the launch last year of the Webex Teams unified app. The app brings together calling, meetings, messaging and video device control—providing customers with a consistent experience regardless of how they join. Other recent updates to Webex have included new grid views, virtual backgrounds and blurring for backgrounds.

Finalist: Intermedia Unite

Intermedia Unite, which brings together a PBX phone system with chat, videoconferencing, file sharing and backup, provides its Unified-Communications-as-a-Service offering with simplified management capabilities and strong reliability. Intermedia recently brought Contact Center as a Service to Unite as an integrated feature for the platform.

Finalist: Nextiva

With its Cospace solution, Nextiva is helping businesses navigate the shift to remote work. Nextiva Cospace features HD voice and video, task management, file sharing, calendar management and chat—all designed with a simplified and user-friendly interface. Capabilities include video and audio meetings with up to 250 participants.

Finalist: Zoom

Along with its widely used videoconferencing application, Zoom has launched a cloud phone system, Zoom Phone, as an add-on to the video platform. Zoom Phone supports inbound and outbound calling through the public switched telephone network, and offers integrated telephony features that enable customers to replace their existing PBX solution.

Kyle Alspach

Kyle Alspach is a Senior Editor at CRN focused on cybersecurity. His coverage spans news, analysis and deep dives on the cybersecurity industry, with a focus on fast-growing segments such as cloud security, application security and identity security.  He can be reached at

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