Avaya Aura Platform gets user interface overhaul

The new Equinox software client for the Avaya Aura Platform delivers UC services to mobile devices, desktops and the Chrome web browser.

Avaya has overhauled the software client for the Avaya Aura Platform. The customizable user interface, called Equinox, provides full access to the enterprise UC system's services on a mobile device, desktop or web browser.

Introduced last week, Equinox automatically connects to Aura and makes licensed functionality available through a client tailored to the user's device. Corporate employees using the Apple iPhone or iPad can download the software from the App Store while apps for Android smartphones and tablets are available through Google Play.

Avaya has also released a version of Equinox for computers running either Windows or Mac OS X. The vendor has also made Avaya Aura Platform services available through an extension for the Google Chrome browser.

The add-on leverages Chrome's WebRTC support to provide UC services. Avaya plans to release extensions for Mozilla Firefox, Apple Safari and Microsoft Internet Explorer, as those browsers become compliant with WebRTC standards.

Business application integration with the Avaya Aura Platform

Corporate employees using Google Apps, Microsoft Office 365 or Salesforce through Chrome can launch some Aura functionality, such as click-to-call or video conferencing, without leaving the cloud-based applications.

Avaya has made Equinox customizable on any of the above device platforms. Companies with unique requirements can make changes to the UI using its software development kit.

The Avaya Aura Platform is on-premises technology that delivers real-time voice, video, messaging, mobility and other UC services. The platform also has built-in conferencing and contact center applications.

Gartner recommends Aura for enterprises with significant investments or legacy Nortel systems that they want to migrate to a modern UC system. Avaya acquired the enterprise division of telecom equipment maker Nortel in 2009.

Aura is also useful for companies that have contact centers or are looking for an open system to integrate with business processes and applications, the research firm said in its latest Magic Quadrant for Unified Communications.

Avaya weakness

Avaya's weakness is financial. Revenue has declined due to Microsoft's and Cisco's domination of the enterprise UC market. Gartner has given Avaya a financial rating of "caution."

"Avaya has been unable to demonstrate increased adoption and market momentum for its broader UC portfolio, which it must do to succeed," Gartner said in the UC report. "It cannot rely solely on its telephony and contact center solutions."

Avaya Equinox is available at no additional charge for Aura customers. However, use of the Chrome extension requires a separate license. Companies can choose to pay $69 per user for a perpetual license or an annual subscription fee of $29 per user.

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