Integrating Alexa for Business with Polycom Group Series
Alexa for Business helps you simplify your meeting room experience. It lets you use your voice to start meetings and control your conference room equipment, such as the Polycom video conferencing equipment. At re:Invent 2017, AWS demonstrated an integration with the Polycom Group Series.
Today, AWS is excited to launch support for Polycom Group Series to all customers. Customers using Polycom Group Series 310, 500, or 700 can now augment their setup with an Alexa-enabled device, such as an Echo Dot, and control their meetings with their voice.
This blog post shows how you can integrate Alexa for Business with Polycom Group Series.
Set up Alexa for Business
First, provision your Echo device using the Alexa for Business Device Setup Tool and add it to a room that you created in Alexa for Business. For more information about setting up an Echo device, see the Alexa for Business Administration Guide.
Second, open the Alexa for Business console and link your calendar system to Alexa for Business. Your calendar system can be Google G Suite, Office 365, or Microsoft Exchange, as shown in the following example.
Alexa for Business can look up the dial-in information of your meetings when you associate the email address of your resource calendar with the room you created in the Alexa for Business console.
Third, set up your conference provider in Alexa for Business. Alexa for Business supports popular conferencing providers including Amazon Chime, Zoom, BlueJeans, and Skype for Business. For the example in this post, we use Skype for Business.
To add Skype for Business as your conferencing provider, choose Conferencing, Add provider, Skype for Business.
Fourth, integrate Alexa for Business with your Polycom Group Series endpoints. There are four parts to this step:
- Choose Conferencing, enable the Alexa for Cisco Telepresence and Polycom Group Series skill, and add it to the skill group associated with your rooms.
- Download and install the Alexa for Business Gateway on a host within the local network where you have your Polycom Group Series endpoints connected. The Gateway is a lightweight process that you can install either on a Windows or Linux host. It allows Alexa for Business to control your Polycom Group Series endpoint on your local network. To receive messages from Alexa for Business, you must provide a set of AWS credentials and a set of the credentials to access your Polycom Group Series endpoints.
- Add the details of your video conferencing endpoints to Alexa for Business. To do this, go to the Alexa for Cisco Telepresence and Polycom Group Series skill, and choose Add endpoint. Choose Polycom Group Series from the Model drop-down menu, and specify the required information.
- To finish the setup, go to the room you created in Alexa for Business and choose Discover devices to detect the Polycom Group Series endpoint assigned to the room.
Now the setup is complete, you can say things like “Alexa, join my meeting.”
Alexa for Business queries the associated resource calendar to look-up the dial-in information and prompt you to join the upcoming meeting. After confirmation, Alexa for Business dials into the meeting on your Polycom Group Series.
When you use Amazon Chime, Zoom, BlueJeans, or other SIP-compatible conferencing providers, you are prompted for your meeting ID and optional PIN when there is no scheduled meeting on the calendar. When you use your Polycom Group Series with Skype for Business, you can currently join only scheduled meetings.
Try it out! Go to the Alexa for Business console to get started. For more information about integrating Alexa for Business with Polycom Group Series, see the Alexa for Business Administration Guide.