Neil Hyndman – Day 2 from Enterprise Connect

    With another day under our belts at Enterprise Connect – Mitel did not fail to deliver again today.  The new day brought more exciting announcements from Mitel.

    Although Mitel remains dominantly a software provider of call control, collaboration and messaging – Mitel continues to manufacture a great line up of IP endpoints.  Coming from the recent merger of Mitel and Aastra, Mitel delivered its latest IP phone from their SIP-only line up of IP endpoints – the Mitel 6800i SIP phone.  The Mitel 6800i SIP Phone is a great looking device that features a large, color display and built-in GigE LAN interface.

    After checking out the Mitel 6800i, I took some time to walk around the convention floor and compared all the IP endpoints from all of the different manufactures.  Hands down, Mitel has the best looking phones on the market.  From the 5304 – all the way to the 5360 – and the new Mitel 6800i SIP phone – Mitel designs some pretty cool endpoints.

    If you want to check out more about the Mitel 6800i SIP phone – click here (link:  http://aboutus.mitel.com/News-Releases/Photo-Release-Mitel-Launches-Latest-Series-of-SIP-Phones-Raising-the-Bar-on-Audio-Performance-Wh-1b3.aspx).  In addition, if you haven’t checked out the new Mitel “About Us” page (http://aboutus.mitel.com/) on Mitel.COM – I highly recommend you do.  This is a well laid-out page that gives you all the latest and greatest Mitel news on a single page.  It’s like a Mitel Dashboard of the latest new, stock performance and all things social media.  I frequently use this page to see what is going on at Mitel.

    Also on the agenda was listening to a panel discussion about “the real case for the cloud.”  This panel discussed a number of different topics and concerns around cloud-based voice solutions.  The panel was made of up of a number of software companies that offer a hosted voice or Unified Communications as a Service (UCaaS) type of solution.  Representing Mitel was Christian Szpilfogel – Mitel’s Chief Architect.  Although I really like Mitel’s solutions, I wanted to go into this session with an open mind.  I wanted to see and understand what each UCaaS company brought to the table and why they thought their solution was the best.  Out of all the companies on the panel, only two offered both a premise-based and a cloud-based offering – only two!  Out of these two – only Mitel offered a single software stream for both premise and cloud.  Mitel has a single software stream architecture – they don’t break things up into multiple software products.  In my mind, this is a really great idea and a great way to better manage the software.  If we break it down, it’s easier for Mitel to maintain and add new features to a single software stream.  In addition, for the dealer community – again it’s the same software we have always worked on – so there is no retraining the technicians in the field.  And finally, for the end-user at the desktop (or collaborating remotely) the experience is again the same.  The Mitel IP endpoints and collaboration software all remains the same.  Same look and feel.  With this, anyone and everyone can take their voice infrastructure to “the Cloud” or argument what they already have with a cloud offering – all while continuing to use the same software.  There is no new learning curve for anyone – just the platform – the way in which the software is delivered – changes.  This is a really smooth move in my mind.  In case you didn’t catch my blog yesterday, Mitel’s cloud offering is called MiCloud.  More information on MiCloud can be found here(http://www.mitel.com/products/micloud-business-solutions).

    Also discussed during the session was each companies’ ability to offer a premise-based, cloud-based or hybrid approach to their deployment methods.  Again, only two could panelists stated they could deliver premise or cloud – the other two were cloud only.  Again it came down to just Mitel.  Only Mitel could promise to deliver a hybrid offering – mixing the premise-based call control software with call control in the cloud.  It was pretty neat to see Mitel be the only competitor that is able to deliver this – and is doing it today!

    Finally today I checked out Mitel’s Contact Center Manager (M-CCM) 7.0 down on the convention floor.  Again – fresh from an acquisition – Mitel’s purchase of PrairieFyre is really starting to take shape.  At the Mitel booth I got a great demonstration of the new Ignite desktop client, the new Web Chat enhancements and the new Call Flow Manager.  Mitel has really taken the setup and configuration of contact center management to the next level.  With the latest software – adding social media and other forms of communication into a customers’ contact center is a piece of cake!  Mitel really makes the tools to keep companies contact centers modern and up-to-date.  It’s all pretty simple with Mitel!