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TMCnet Unified Communications Week in Review

July 09, 2011

unified communications features on Unified Communications (UC) covered a lot of ground this week, ranging from thought pieces about UC vs. Social Networking in the Enterprise and the influence of LTE wireless deployments on the UC market to analyst comparisons, partner and distribution announcements and even an earnings report.

As the week ended we unified communications Contributor Anil Sharma reported that Hancock Estabrook, a leading upstate NY law firm had selected Mitel's (News - Alert) Freedom Architecture for Communication Anywhere to allow its 60+ attorneys to work flexibly and effectively from any location.

Contributing Editor Gary Kim weighed in with two interesting features. The first, “Is Social Software a Substitute for Unified Communications?” raised some interesting questions as to whether the recent announcements of Google+ and Facebook video calling mean that social media is a complement or challenger to UC in Enterprise. The second, “LTE Could Support Widespread Cloud and UC Deployments,” highlighted a survey conducted by analyst firm MobileSQUARED on behalf of BroadSoft, that about three quarters of mobile operators surveyed globally are currently deploying, trialing or planning to deploy LTE.

On the partnership front, unified communications Contributor Rahul Arora detailed the recent announcement by service provider 360networks (News - Alert) that Clearfly Communications (a provider of unified communications to the small and medium businesses in suburban markets), selected its 360networks Ethernet Virtual Private Line (EVPL) service in support of end user needs between Billings and Seattle.  

Calvin Azuri, unified communications Contributor, reported on the bake-off done by BI Research that has ranked Microsoft (News - Alert) at the top of its latest Vendor Matrix. Cisco Systems and IBM Corporation took the second and third in BI’s most recent evaluation of worldwide unified communications (UC) vendors.  In a release, Subha Rama, ABI senior analyst said that, “Microsoft has shown the strongest growth among UC vendors, leveraging its position as a leader in desktop applications, integrated multiple solutions, and a compelling software-based UC solution in Lync. It cited Microsoft’s wide spectrum of partners for Lync and expanding ecosystem stating, “It has an equally significant play both on the premises and in the cloud.”

AltiGen in Pact with KPN to Launch iFusion SmartStations in the Netherlands

AltiGen (News - Alert) Communications  announced the launch of iFusion SmartStation for iPhone (News - Alert) in the Netherlands this month through dominant Dutch service provider KPN. As reported by Rajani Baburajan, unified communications Contributor,  KPN will also distribute the iFusion, which extends a traditional telephone handset and hands-free speakerphone to the iPhone, through its subsidiary Getronics, which operates a global ICT services company in the Benelux. And, as detailed by unified communications Contributor Deepika Mala, AltiGen also signed a definitive agreement with IT distributor Copaco to distribute iFusion SmartStations in the Benelux and France.

Mitel was the source of news on several fronts with earnings results, customer deployments and the naming of its top U.S. channel partner.

  • unified communications Contributor Madhubanti Rudra, had the news on Mitel’s improved revenues. The company announced that it had achieved $166.6 million revenue for the fourth quarter for fiscal year ended April 30, 2011, up from revenue of $162.0 million in the third quarter.
  • unified communications Contributor Nathesh, reported on JW Marriott Indianapolis’s deployment of Mitel's Unified Communications Built on Freedom Architecture.
  • unified communications Contributor Carolyn J Dawson, highlighted Mitel naming Windstream Corp. as its 2011 Top U.S. Channel Partner, and that Windstream also was named Mitel’s Enterprise Channel Partner of the Year and Service Provider Channel Partner of the Year, in the U.S.

Fonality (News - Alert), announced availability of Fonality PBXtra 5.2, a hybrid hosted solution that is capable of blending cloud and premise-based VoIP technology to enhance communications efficiency and flexibility.   Details of the enhancements are in unified communications Contributor Nathesh’s feature which cites some of the new enhancements integrated into the Version 5.2 as including:

  • Proactive Monitoring – a diagnostic view of the communications system is presented that can be used by administrators to analyze any device to obtain metrics such as call latency, jitter and packet loss
  • Multi-Site Unified Communications Features – an ability to connect multiple Fonality Heads Up Display (HUD)
  • Advanced alert systems – for monitoring office and remote workers communications proactively; and more.

Also as a feature of Fonality PBXtra 5.2, Fonality HUD provides presence and activity monitoring combined with email and text capabilities.

Peter Bernstein is a technology industry veteran, having worked in multiple capacities with several of the industry's biggest brands, including Avaya, Alcatel-Lucent, Telcordia, HP, Siemens, Nortel, France Telecom, and others, and having served on the Advisory Boards of 15 technology startups. To read more of Peter's work, please visit his columnist page.

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