Moves are part of company’s larger cloud efforts
Avaya, which had been a focus of attention in recent months as it weighed options for securing its future, is now rolling out enhancements to its communications and contact center offerings in the wake of its recent partnership with RingCentral.
The Lowdown: In a matter of two days this week, the company unveiled IX-CC, its next-generation Contact Center-as-a-Service (CCaaS) platform, and a subscription program for customers looking to run their communications and collaboration solutions in the cloud, on premises, or in a hybrid cloud environment.
The Details: The IX-CC platform is part of Avaya’s larger effort to expand its cloud-based offerings. The platform, which will launch in the first half of next year, is designed to make it easier for organizations to make the move from an on-premises solution to a multi-tenant architecture that can be run on any public cloud environment. IX-CC is aimed at both larger enterprises and SMBs.
It will be available initially with voice capabilities, with omnichannel features coming later in 2020.
Avaya’s IX Subscription program offers a consumption-based pricing model for the vendor’s contact center and unified communications (UC) solutions. Customers can choose between monthly or annual payments and can flex up to 20% over the number of subscribed users at no additional cost. At the same time, Avaya is making Avaya IX Spaces, its recently announced cloud-based platform for collaboration and meetings, part of the subscription program.
Customers can trade in existing perpetual licenses for credits applied to their subscription payments, and another program called Experience Avaya is designed to enable organizations not running the latest Avaya software releases to upgrade to Avaya OneCloud or Avaya IX on-premises software.
The Impact: Even as Avaya over the past couple of months looked for a buyer – either another vendor or private equity – it was still making moves to grow its cloud capabilities, including partnering with IBM on a hybrid cloud effort. Earlier this month, the company announced a partnership with RingCentral that made the company Avaya’s exclusive provider of UC-as-a-Service (UCaaS) offerings. In addition, the two companies are creating joint solutions and programs for their partners, and RingCentral is putting a much-needed $500 million in Avaya’s coffers, including $125 million for a 6% stake in the company.
The Buzz: “For many customers, moving to a subscription model for their on-premises communication infrastructure is a logical next step in their journey to the cloud – or to accelerate their overall business transformation,” said Frank Ciccone, Avaya’s senior vice president for sales. “This highlights our commitment to better meet the needs of our clients and guide them on a transition path to the future in a way that works best for their business. It’s also another example of our strategy to increase the value and flexibility of our UC and CC solutions to address our customers’ evolving requirements.”
“Many enterprise customers are not ready to move all of their communications systems to the cloud, but they would still like the benefits of paying only for the services they use and the flexibility to adapt as needed,” said Stephanie Watson, general manager of MZA Ltd. “The world is not either premise or cloud – the on-premises and cloud hybrid model will be a critical transition option for most large enterprises. Avaya understands this and is making life in a hybrid world much easier for their customers.”
“This is a natural evolution of our product development process to fully embrace a cloud-based, multi-tenant platform with feature-rich applications and the flexibility of a microservices architecture,” said Chris McGugan, Avaya’s senior vice president of solutions and technology, of Avaya IX-CC. “While continuing to offer our customers their choice of deployment options, we expect our enterprise customers to shift from an on-premises deployment paradigm to a cloud-based private or public cloud architecture over the next two to three years. Accordingly, and uniquely, our next-generation contact center platform, Avaya IX-CC, has been designed to meet that expectation.”