Avaya unveils channel-only video conferencing and collaboration service

Avaya Equinox Meetings Online is a rebranded and significantly upgraded updating of Avaya Live Video. It is a service which integrates well with on-prem video, and is aimed at the premium part of the market where video quality matters.

Corey Mindel, Avaya Canada channel chief

Last fall Avaya introduced Equinox, a new platform that became their unified communications [UC] device branding, combining traditional UC with elements of messaging and conferencing, and an improved client experience. At that point in time, the product was part of Avaya Aura, and purely an enterprise play. Now Avaya is expanding Equinox, with Avaya Equinox Meetings Online. This is a cloud-based video conferencing and collaboration service, rather than a product. It is also designed as a channel-only product. Further Equinox channel opportunities, notably its integration into IP Office, are coming soon.

“Equinox is all about branding our UC clients,” said Corey Mindel, Avaya Canada’s channel chief. “That’s  where we going across both SMB and the enterprise.”

Equinox Meetings Online is a rebranding of the former Avaya Live Video offering.

“It now brings the same skin as our overall Equinox UC branding strategy to our video conferencing collaboration cloud service,” Mandel said.

Avaya Equinox Meetings Online will go to market exclusively through channel partners.

“Avaya Live Video was a channel product and our go-to-market with this is exclusively through the channel as well,” Mindel indicated.

In addition to the branding change, the service has also been upgraded from its former status.

“There used to be a maximum of 25 participants who could be supported in a virtual meeting room,” Mindel said. “That has now been increased to support up to 50 participants.”

Equinox Meetings Online provides wideband audio and video with up to 1080p HD that is both bandwidth efficient and optimized for Internet connectivity.

“This is a premium video conference-as-a-service,” Mindel emphasized. “There are lots of services that range from free to a nominal cost. This one is focused on the video experience first. If you just want a document share, you don’t need a premium product. This is for when you want to incorporate the video element, from a mobility perspective, and when you want to show something to someone in the field.

It’s also a good fit as part of a hybrid solution. The online service also integrates with many room-based solutions, including Avaya Scopia, but also competitor offerings from Cisco, Polycom and Lifesize.

“Integrating with room-based solutions brings that room-based experience to life and adds mobility to it,” Mindel said. “It’s a way for the customer to leverage that room-based video investment and integrate it into this solution, and bring it out to make it more mobile.

“For the partner community on voice, PBX or the simple cloud isn’t the target for this,” Mindel added. “It’s customers looking for UC video and team management as well as telephony. That’s where we see partners having success in positioning the solution.”

Mindel also noted that Avaya Equinox Meetings Online – unlike Avaya Live Video – is a global offering.

“The old service was basically just available in the U.S. and Canada,” he said. “This is now a global offer, which is now positioned in over 30 countries with more to come. That’s important here, because we have companies with offices across the globe.”

Mindel also indicated the channel can expect more to come soon on the Equinox front.

“We will also be launching Equinox from an IP Office perspective,” he said. “That’s around the corner.”