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Avaya cloud framework gains UC, video and contact center offerings

Lynn Haber

In a shout out to the channel partner community, Avaya Inc. today announced new and enhanced Avaya Collaborative

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Cloud solutions for mobile collaboration and multichannel customer service, as well as a flexible usage-based model.

Looking for an uptake from cloud service providers (CSPs) and channel partners interested in either hosting and delivering their own branded Avaya Avaya Unified Communications as a Service, Contact Center as a Service and Video as a Service (VaaS) -- or selling the Avaya hosted solution -- the vendor is putting its stake in the competitive ground by broadening its Collaborative Cloud strategy.

The new and expanded products announced today include:

  • Avaya Cloud Enablement for Unified Communications and Customer Experience Management, a utility-based service for CSPs that allows them to pay only for customer usage, enabling them to better accommodate the dynamic needs of their customers. Avaya Control Manager, for customer management, enables multi-tenancy with centralized management and an administrative segmentation tool. Cloud Enablement for Unified Communications and Customer Experience Management is delivered on Avaya’s Aura open and scalable architecture -- the company’s enterprise architecture for contact center, UC, and conferencing -- to help lower cost and simplify service provider environments.
  • Avaya Cloud Enablement for Video, a scalable, open platform that delivers interoperable multi-vendor video collaboration. The solution delivers out-of-the-box multi-tenancy capabilities and customization of the Scopia mobile application by tenant/organization.
  • Avaya Communications Outsourcing Solutions (COS) Express, a private cloud offering that can be hosted by Avaya, a CSP or a channel partner for the end customer. This first edition of COS Express focuses on contact center deployments for businesses with as many as 500 concurrent agents.

Avaya first introduced its Collaborative Cloud framework in March 2012 and with it AvayaLive Connect, a full suite of UC capabilities for the 20-or-fewer-employee market, and AvayaLiveEngage, a Web-based immersive collaboration environment. Immersive collaboration features 3D visuals, video, spatial audio and avatars and users feel like they’re in the environment.

In August 2012, the vendor enhanced its Collaborative Cloud framework with the introduction of Collaboration Pods  , a portfolio of cloud-ready, turnkey solutions to accelerate deployments of Avaya Collaborative Cloud. Avaya Collaboration Pods are based on technology from Avaya, EMC Corp. and VMware Inc. and target enterprises and smaller CSPs.

Today’s announcement was met with a mixed review from Gartner Inc.’s Jay Lassman, research director covering the enterprise unified communications market.

“Contact center as a service is long established and mature. However, the UC and Video as a Service markets are just beginning to emerge and represent very good growth opportunities, especially for offers that are available globally and support seamless integration with premises-based platforms,” he said.

A recent Gartner report by managing vice president for communications, Scott Morrison, "Gartner Market Trends: Videoconferencing, Worldwide, 2012 ," stated that the demand for software-driven, cloud-based video has increased dramatically but still represents a small portion of the overall market despite being seen by enterprises as a low-risk way to grow capacity without making heavy investments. He also noted that demand for video at all levels is changing as well as maturing and is no longer seen as out-of-the-ordinary.

Service provider infrastructure to deliver VaaS is set to grow strongly over the next five years. In fact, Garter expects that more than a quarter of new deployments of video infrastructure will be delivered to service providers for use in their cloud solutions (as opposed to for resale) by 2016 -- up from an estimated 8% in 2011 -- primarily to support their growing business exchange services.

Finally, Morrison also reports that cloud-based VaaS will become a reality faster than other cloud communications. Gartner expects about 20% of the wider UC market to move to cloud by 2016, with email as the core application, rather than real-time communications, driving this growth. With video, however, Gartner expects that by 2016, more than 50% of all net-new deployments of video infrastructure will be delivered from the cloud or on a SaaS basis.


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