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Avaya Updates IP Office Communication Appliance

Version 6.1 makes it easy for an SMB to manage employee phone calls, videoconferences, instant messages, and text messages.

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Avaya on Monday introduced the new release of its Avaya IP Office communications appliance, which handles voice, instant message, and text message communications.

Avaya IP Office is intended for small to midsize businesses (SMBs), typically with up to 250 seats. A single device can support up to 384 users, and systems can be networked to support a larger overall number, according to Anthony Bartolo, general manager of the Avaya small and medium enterprise communications group.

Avaya IP Office can be used for private branch exchange (PBX), unified communications, and call center applications.

According to Bartolo, Avaya IP Office is a digital/analog hybrid PBX, supporting digital (VoIP) and analog ("POTS," or plain old telephone service) telephones, session initiation protocol (SIP) based terminal devices, and other devices.

"The new release has a lot of interesting multi-site and mobility features -- important as small and midsize businesses begin to go multi-site, and new ones go distributed," commented Alan Weckel, director, Dell'Oro Group. "And for companies who already have Avaya or Nortel voice systems, this gives a clear migration path. They can leverage existing systems or phones, and move to a new version."

New features and other improvements in Version 6.1 include easier installation, consolidated multi-site management, improved videoconferencing, and a redesigned web portal

According to Bartolo, "We've simplified installation to a single DVD, and reduced the install time by 75%. We can get a customer up and running in about 30 minutes." Bartolo claims this is the best install time in the industry. The installation DVD includes a version of Linux, plus key applications. Previously, according to the company, the operating system and the IP Office applications had to be installed from multiple DVDs from several sources.

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