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Product review: Unified Communications, April 25, 2007

Product review: Unified Communications, April 25, 2007

Nortel ERS 4548 GT-PWR

Part of Nortel's 4500-series, this Ethernet routing switch extends the functionality of the vendor's unified communications solutions. The switch is part of a stackable system, which provides the high-performance, convergence-ready, secure and resilient Ethernet connectivity required by application and competition-driven enterprise networks. It delivers 10/100/1000 switching with Power over Ethernet (PoE) for simplified network deployments. This provides IEEE 802.3af standards-compliant PoE that enables the switch to power multiple devices - including IP phones, wireless access points, network cameras, security devices and access control devices - regardless of product vendor. Deployment in converged networks is greatly simplified through dynamic power management of the PoE ports, with load sharing and redundant power offered by Nortel's RPS 15 Power Supply Unit. The switch also uses standards-based DSCP and 802.1p priority queuing to prioritise mission-critical traffic, such as VoIP. The switch supports four queues for the classification and prioritisation of network traffic, ensuring high levels of voice and video quality across the network during high data traffic periods.
Distributed by LAN Systems.
RRP: From $US4197

Avaya one-X Portal

The Web-based software solution provides users with control of telephony, conferencing, messaging, mobility administration, and access to corporate and personal contact information. It consolidates access to all critical voice applications that a user needs in a consistent interface. The solution complements the use of the desk phone while in the office, supports remote workers from any location, and can be used by any employee from any Internet connection should they be unable to get to an office location in the event of a business interruption. The one-X Portal increases the control users have over their communications by enabling them to define who they will interact with in real-time. Workers can set preferences, such as Find Me/Follow Me/Hide Me, enabling selective routing of calls and contacts based on their availability. Mobility features include Extension-to-Cellular, which allows calls sent to the business extension to simultaneously ring the cell phone.
Distributed by Avaya.
RRP: Pricing available on request.

Avaya one-X Portal

The Web-based software solution provides users with control of telephony, conferencing, messaging, mobility administration, and access to corporate and personal contact information. It consolidates access to all critical voice applications that a user needs in a consistent interface. The solution complements the use of the desk phone while in the office, supports remote workers from any location, and can be used by any employee from any Internet connection should they be unable to get to an office location in the event of a business interruption. The one-X Portal increases the control users have over their communications by enabling them to define who they will interact with in real-time. Workers can set preferences, such as Find Me/Follow Me/Hide Me, enabling selective routing of calls and contacts based on their availability. Mobility features include Extension-to-Cellular, which allows calls sent to the business extension to simultaneously ring the cell phone.
Distributed by Avaya.
RRP: Pricing available on request.

Alcatel-Lucent OmniTouch UC

Targeted at enterprises, this next-generation, IP-based unified communications suite is based on four UC applications: My Teamwork, My Messaging, My Phone and My Assistant. Users can tailor, control and manage calls, messages, directories, collaborative work tools and information from any location using any device or software interface. The server-based suite implements the latest Internet technologies (XML/SOAP, SIP and VXML). According to the vendor, these can help minimise capital expenditure by integrating communication functions with Web services in a simple and cost-effective way, while providing workers with a richer, more personalised communication environment. It offers a multi-interface, which can be a Web browser, mobile phone, wireless PDA, Outlook, Lotus Notes, Outlook Web Access, iNotes or any kind of phone for voice access. The suite is easy to integrate with existing corporate resources and applications such as corporate mail servers (Microsoft Exchange/Outlook, Lotus Domino/Notes), PBXs, portals (for example, IBM Websphere Portal, Microsoft Sharepoint Portal, BEA Web-Logic), business applications, directories and databases.
Distributed by Alcatel.
RRP: Four modules (full suite) for 100 users is $100,000 including software maintenance.

Mitel SIP Trunk Licence

Mitel has delivered direct Session Initiation Protocol (SIP) integration with Microsoft's Exchange Server 2007. The latest solutions allow businesses to integrate directly with both Microsoft Live Communications Server and Exchange Server 2007, simplifying the deployment of enterprise-grade unified messaging. Mitel's embedded SIP integration eliminates the need for a separate SIP gateway when integrating the Mitel 3300 ICP system. The solution also simplifies support for multiple forms of unified communications, including voice, email and fax. This new capability will be available to existing Mitel 3300 ICP customers through a software upgrade. Exchange Server 2007 Unified Messaging delivers a unified inbox experience including email, voicemail and fax reception functionality. Other new functions range from a speech-based auto attendant to Microsoft Outlook Voice Access, which allows users to access all their vital business communications from any wired or wireless device, using speech recognition or a touchtone interface.
Distributed by Telstra Business Systems and Uptime Distribution.
RRP: $185

Polycom RMX 2000

This real-time media conferencing platform simplifies the delivery and management of multipoint video (multiple locations on a single call) as well as unified conferencing (video, voice, and content all on a single call) services within enterprises and through service provider IP networks. It addresses the growing demand for a high performance video conferencing infrastructure that can support both room video conferencing systems as well as extensive deployments of desktop video collaboration, on-demand or instantaneous (rather than scheduled) conferencing, and high bandwidth, processing-intensive applications such as high-definition (HD) video and telepresence. The conferencing platform is optimised for use on IP networks and designed from the ground up to be at the heart of a unified communications network. It delivers video interactions and audio quality using any device. According to the vendor, IT managers will find it easy to configure, install, manage, service, and administer through installation wizards, automated system surveillance, pre-defined profiles, and standard Web interfaces.
Distributed by Unitel and Asnet.
RRP: Modular systems start from $88,950


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