How to Extend the Life of Your Avaya PBX
Avaya has a long tradition of producing excellent PBX systems, supported by a talented partner community and surrounded by a large ecosystem of technology partners. Organizations around the world have come to rely on them as the backbone of their telephony infrastructures. With Avaya’s 2019 partnership with UCaaS provider RingCentral, administrators might be asking themselves, “What’s next?”
The 2019 RingCentral Announcement
2019 was filled with speculation on what would be next for Avaya as a company. Mitel seemed interested, and there were rumors that other big fish might be circling. In the end, however, Avaya announced a major partnership with RingCentral. RingCentral made a $500 million investment, becoming a minor Avaya shareholder and working with Avaya to introduce Avaya Cloud Office by RingCentral (ACO) in Q1 of 2020.
To quote Avaya President and CEO Jim Chirico from their joint press release,
“Avaya Cloud Office is a continuation of our stated strategy to be a cloud-first company, and we believe the addition of this UCaaS solution to our portfolio is a key differentiator that provides customers with a seamless journey to cloud communications.”
So, Avaya has explained where they plan on going in the future, but what does that mean for you?
XMedius VP & General Manager of Voice Solutions, Tom Minifie, explained what he believes this means for the current Avaya install base:
“Moving forward, it appears Avaya is going to really focus on Contact Center as a Service, and that’s where all their R&D is going to go. From a Unified Communications perspective, they’re essentially leaving that behind and saying ‘we are reducing our investment in Unified Communications. If a customer wants to move forward with Unified Communications and they want to move to the Cloud, we’re going to take them over to RingCentral.’”
“Cloud first” and “seamless journey to cloud” may sound great for organizations already planning a migration, but what does that mean for those who need to keep their PBXs and advanced messaging capabilities on-premises? In addition, for those that have invested in a best of breed approach with Avaya’s technology ecosystem partners, does the same functionality exist in the RingCentral offering? Tom continued:
“That doesn’t mean Avaya PBXs are going to go away overnight. Customers are going to hold on to those for a long time. My council to that customer would be, make sure you’re surrounding that solution with applications that are going to live on into the future for you.”
Watch the full interview with Tom Minifie:
With the RingCentral agreement in mind, it’s worth discussing how Avaya messaging solution customers have had a rocky ride over the years.
A Brief History of Avaya Messaging
Avaya’s history with messaging solutions is a complicated one. Over the years they’ve acquired and introduced solution after solution. As solutions have been promoted, others have had their support ended, forcing organizations to jump to alternatives.
Most recently, after acquiring Esna, Avaya re-introduced IX Messaging (previously Esna’s Officelinx) as their current offering. They set end of support dates for more recent Avaya messaging solutions and encouraged their customers to switch. However, now the future of IX Messaging has itself been called into question by the 2019 RingCentral/Avaya announcement. It’s hard to know what on-premises Avaya users are going to be asked to do next.
The Stress-Free Messaging Alternative: XM Connect
While Avaya messaging customers have spent over a decade jumping from raft to raft as each solution sank into end of support, XMedius customers, including those with Avaya PBXs, have had smooth sailing. Though the company and product names have changed over the years, we’ve continued iterating on the same solution rather than throwing it out and making customers start over.
Not only that, but XM Connect remains a fully independent Unified Communications solution with industry-leading interoperability. It delivers feature rich Unified Messaging in partnership with your existing Avaya PBX and will work with other manufacturers’ PBXs as well. With this solution, you can even tie multiple PBXs from different vendors into a single system. Beyond the premises, XM Connect also works with Office 365 and other cloud solutions, enabling you to maintain your technology investments across acquisitions or cloud migrations.
Keep Your Excellent Avaya PBX, But Simplify Your Future
You shouldn’t have to rip and replace your tried and true Avaya PBX or keep cycling through messaging solutions because of the uncertain future. Protect your investment and keep your options open by pairing your on-premises hardware with an industry-leading XM Connect solution.
Reach out to us to discover how cost-effective, yet powerful, an XM Connect installation can be.