Avaya Launches IP Office 10

Avaya yesterday launched Avaya IP Office 10, the latest version of its unified communications solution for small and midsized businesses, with improved security, resiliency, and end-user experience.

Avaya IP Office 10 features built-in signaling and media encryption for endpoints and UC clients to preserve privacy and data integrity.

"The challenge of keeping up with growing, ever-changing cybersecurity threats is daunting, especially for small and midsized businesses with budget and resource constraints," said Gary Barnett, senior vice president and general manager of Avaya Engagement Solutions, in a statement. "It's these very constraints that increase the inclination to choose cloud-based services; however, it's also not a given fact that security is or will be provided by their cloud vendor. That's why we believe security should be built into the solution as opposed to bolted on. It's essential and a core component of our Avaya IP Office Platform."

IP Office 10 also takes a unique approach to resiliency, providing system fail-over cloud-to-cloud, cloud-to-premises, premises-to-cloud, and premises-to-premises. Whatever the approach, the system stays active and users maintain connectivity throughout the outage.

Mark Massingham, senior marketing manager for Avaya IP Office, says offering four layers of resiliency is key. "Premises-to-premises and cloud-to-cloud is easy. We have the added resiliency to do premises-to-cloud and cloud-to-premises," he says.

Avaya IP Office 10 also introduces the H175 video phone, with a 7-inch high-definition touchscreen display. "The new phone means added features," Massingham points out.

In addition, IP Office 10 opens a number of APIs to make it easier for developers to create WebRTC-based clients. Virtual meeting functions have been streamlined and strengthened with WebRTC audio and richer collaboration capabilities.

The WebRTC client integrates with Google, Office365, Salesforce.com, and a number of other business applications. "And a single sign-on makes them easier to use," Massingham says.

IP Office 10 also features the standard unified communications elements that have become the hallmarks of IP Office. These include presence, instant messaging, conferencing, and directories, as well as contact center capabilities to handle the phone, email, chat, fax, SMS, and Web channels, and even workforce optimization tools.

Beyond that, Avaya has done a lot to incorporate mobile technologies into the solution, according to Massingham. "We want to make people more productive wherever they are," he says.

The Avaya IP Office Platform is available through authorized channel partners in premises-based, hybrid, or pure cloud deployment options.

IP Office scales from five seats to 3,000 seats and can accommodate up to 150 separate locations, "all centrally managed through one console," according to Massingham.

Though mostly geared for small and midsized businesses, Massingham says IP Office is seeing a lot of traction in the upper-midmarket. "It really is an enterprise-grade tool for everything from single doctor's offices to hotel chains," he says. "It's a very broad platform that can support a broad range of markets and clients."

IP Office has been installed across 600,000 sites, according to Massingham, who notes that many deployments are moving to the cloud.

"Companies typically look at customer service with dollar signs in their eyes," he says. "With [IP Office] 10, companies can keep some of their investments on site and deploy things like UC and contact center [technology] in the cloud for a monthly fee. It makes everything much more affordable."