Poly control panel

Video Conferencing Systems: Get More Flexibility with Cloud Video Interop

Uni­fied Com­mu­ni­ca­tions (UC) describes the inter­con­nec­tion of com­mu­ni­ca­tion plat­forms like video con­fer­enc­ing, chat, phone and file shar­ing.  The UC indus­try is evolv­ing rapid­ly. And while this cre­ates excel­lent oppor­tu­ni­ties to improve vir­tu­al com­mu­ni­ca­tion across your busi­ness, it also presents an over­whelm­ing num­ber of options and choic­es. What is the best UC Plat­form for your busi­ness? Which brands pro­vide the most flex­i­bil­i­ty or great­est val­ue? What is the end user experience?

Learn about the meet­ing space tech­nolo­gies which sup­port  Zoom, Microsoft Teams and oth­er lead­ing UC sys­tems so you can make the right pur­chase deci­sion for your busi­ness. In this blog, we will dive into SIP end­points and Cloud Video Interop (CVI).

SIP / Standard Endpoints and Cloud Video Interop (CVI)

Cloud Video Interop (CVI) pro­vides flex­i­bil­i­ty if you want to con­tin­ue to use exist­ing SIP or H.323 video con­fer­enc­ing sys­tems and not be locked into a sin­gle UC platform.

Poly control panel

CVI is a Microsoft Qual­i­fied 3rd par­ty solu­tion that enables SIP-based room sys­tems (SIP and H.323) to dial into Microsoft Teams meet­ings. This lets orga­ni­za­tions lever­age their invest­ment in exist­ing tech­nolo­gies. It can be expen­sive to replace exist­ing hard­ware with Microsoft Teams “native” UC sys­tems, so instead uti­liz­ing CVI is a great option.

There are cur­rent­ly 4 cer­ti­fied Microsoft CVI solutions:

  • Poly Real­Con­nect Service
  • Pex­ip Teams Connector
  • Blue­jeans Gate­way for Microsoft Teams
  • Cis­co Gate­way for Microsoft Teams

How does CVI work?

Once a CVI ser­vice is added and per­mis­sions are con­fig­ured, Team Meet­ing invites will auto­mat­i­cal­ly con­tain the appro­pri­ate infor­ma­tion for SIP/H.323 solu­tions to suc­cess­ful­ly join calls. The invite includes a SIP string (i.e. 12345678@example.com) that most hard­ware UC plat­forms will auto­mat­i­cal­ly detect and add as click-to-join on their meet­ing room sys­tem interface.

If your orga­ni­za­tion does not want to stan­dard­ize on Microsoft Teams, you can even com­bine CVI with a cal­en­dar­ing inte­gra­tion to max­i­mize inter­op­er­abil­i­ty across mul­ti­ple plat­forms. Cal­en­dar­ing inte­gra­tion solu­tions will scrape meet­ing invites for SIP dial­ing strings from oth­er major UC plat­forms, and then pull all of the invites into the exist­ing SIP/H.323 video con­fer­enc­ing sys­tems’ cal­en­dar. Any­one enter­ing a meet­ing room will sim­ply hit the “Join” but­ton on the in-room inter­face, and the sys­tem will dial into the appro­pri­ate platform.

Control Panel on table

Exam­ples of these addi­tion­al “cal­en­dar­ing inte­gra­tion” cloud appli­ca­tions are: PEXIP One Touch Join, Poly One Touch Dial, Syn­er­gy Sky Join, Cis­co Cal­en­dar­ing Join, and Blue­Jeans One Touch Join.

How does CVI licens­ing work?

Most CVI solu­tions work under the premise of Con­cur­rent Con­nec­tions. The num­ber of licens­es required is the num­ber of active con­nect­ed SIP end­points you want con­nect­ed into the envi­ron­ment at once. If you have 3 CVI licens­es, your orga­ni­za­tion can have 3 or less con­cur­rent inbound SIP connections.

Most CVI ser­vices allow for a slight bit of over­sub­scrib­ing, so busi­ness can still con­tin­ue with­out inter­rup­tion. For exam­ple, let’s say you have 3 CVI licens­es and all 3 are in use. Then a 4th employ­ee starts a call that has a SIP-based sys­tem join. Tech­ni­cal­ly, your orga­ni­za­tion is now uti­liz­ing 4 CVI licens­es and is over­sub­scribed. But most CVI ser­vices will still allow the 4th call to con­nect and con­tin­ue. The dis­cus­sion around increas­ing the num­ber of CVI licens­es will hap­pen at renew­al or at the next month­ly charge.

Is there a CVI option for Zoom or Google Meet?

Yes! Zoom has a sim­i­lar solu­tion called Con­fer­ence Room Con­nec­tor (CRC). PEXIP has a CVI solu­tion for Google Meet. Both of these solu­tions work like the Microsoft CVI, enabling SIP/H.323 end­points to con­nect into Zoom or Google Meet calls. They also fol­low a sub­scrip­tion-based licens­ing model.

Pros & Cons

Here are the final pros and cons of choos­ing a CVI for your UC Plat­form solution:


  • Less Invest­ment: Lever­age exist­ing stan­dards-based SIP/H.323 hard­ware tech­nolo­gies and invest­ments already exist­ing with­in the organization
  • Flex­i­bil­i­ty: Pro­vides a more agnos­tic approach to all UC Plat­forms, as opposed to lock­ing into a sin­gle “native” platform.


  • Sub­scrip­tion Cost – CVIs are sub­scrip­tion-based ser­vices with addi­tion­al recur­ring annu­al fees.
  • Teams Admin Required – Team CVI con­sists of Microsoft Ten­an­cy Set­up, which requires more advanced admin­is­tra­tor setup.
  • Ini­tial Con­nec­tion Delay – All CVIs intro­duce a very brief (< 2 sec­onds) ini­tial con­nec­tion delay.
  • Only Applies to Inbound SIP calls – CVI licens­es only apply to SIP sys­tems dial­ing into your envi­ron­ment. The licens­es do not extend to your own SIP sys­tems dial­ing out into anoth­er envi­ron­ment. Com­pare the fol­low­ing examples: 
    • Exam­ple 1: Orga­ni­za­tion A has CVI licens­es, while Orga­ni­za­tion B does not. Org A invites Org B to a Zoom invite. Org B dials in via a SIP-based sys­tem and con­nects with no issues. This uti­lizes 1 of Org A’s CVI licenses.
    • Exam­ple 2: Orga­ni­za­tion A has CVI licens­es, while Orga­ni­za­tion B does not. Org B invites Org A to a Teams invite. Org A dials in via a SIP-based sys­tem, but is not able to con­nect because Org B does not have any CVI licens­es. Org A switch­es to a native Team client and can suc­cess­ful­ly dial into Org B’s Team room, because no CVI licens­es are required.

Case studies

At Neurilink, our video conference solutions will help your team stay productive while bolstering your company’s professional presence.

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