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New Avaya IP Self Service Solutions Deliver IntelligentCommunications Through Speech Automation

08-01-2005

Avaya Inc. announced the next generation of its Internet protocol(IP)-based speech self service solutions that deliver enhancedlevels of customer service using the power of voice.

Avaya Inc. (NYSE:AV), a leading global provider of business communications applications, systems and services, today announced the next generation of its Internet protocol (IP)-based speech self service solutions that deliver enhanced levels of customer service using the power of voice. The new Avaya Voice Portal software platform integrates within a service-oriented architecture (SOA), providing a faster, easier way to speech-enable Web services across highly-distributed enterprises. This drives new cost-efficiencies and increased business continuity through speech self service, and makes it simpler to manage a company's customer service operations.

Today, Avaya also introduced a new speech application development tool, Avaya Dialog Designer, which enables designers to speed development of speech self-service applications in a cost-efficient manner. Created for integration with Web services or in traditional environments, Avaya Dialog Designer supports both Avaya Voice Portal and Avaya Interactive Response.

"A growing number of businesses are adding speech applications to enhance customer experiences and contact center functionality. This coincides with the shift to service-oriented architectures that employ Web-based technologies to leverage a company's existing call processing, voice response and customer support systems," said Dan Miller, senior analyst, Opus Research. "As a pioneer in open IP communications, Avaya is in a leading position to help businesses gracefully migrate to the next level of speech-enabled, phone-based self service."

Avaya Voice Portal Decreases Total Cost of Ownership, Improves Application Availability and Makes System Management Simple
The Avaya Voice Portal significantly reduces the costs of deploying speech self service by using a company's existing Web services in a service-oriented architecture - a software-based approach to integrating disparate applications based on open standards technologies. IT staff can lower total cost of ownership (TCO) by re-using existing software components and applications to more efficiently introduce speech self service. The Avaya Voice Portal also supports the standards-based Red Hat Linux Enterprise 3.0 platform, reducing overall server and training costs associated with speech deployments.

Higher availability - which is the continuous, reliable and secure operation of critical applications - is achieved through the unique IP-based architecture of Avaya Voice Portal. The software features license pooling and automatic failover capabilities, delivering greater business continuity of self service at a lower cost by eliminating the need to over-provision, or purchase extra licenses, to help ensure survivability. For instance, if a media server fails in one part of a business, licenses and workload are automatically distributed to other servers, giving customers more consistent 'always-on' access.

The Avaya Voice Portal also contains simplified management and integration capabilities tailored for globally distributed enterprises. Higher scalability now gives IT staff a more flexible way to deploy speech self service from as low as one port (i.e. speech interaction) to thousands of ports. Centralized management capabilities simplify administration by giving IT supervisors a single interface to manage all self service interactions across an entire organization.

For developers, the Avaya Voice Portal includes the new Dialog Designer, an Eclipse-based application development tool that allows designers to more easily and efficiently create new speech applications. Eclipse is a technology framework that enables Dialog Designer to interoperate with a broad range of standards-based development tools, letting designers use their preferred languages to create applications. Dialog Designer also features a common VoiceXML 2.0 browser for use with Avaya Voice Portal and Interactive Response, helping reduce design risks caused by browser incompatibility.

The Avaya Voice Portal and Avaya Dialog Designer are part of the company's Customer Interaction Suite, a core component of Avaya's family of IP-based MultiVantage Communications Applications. These new products will be showcased at SpeechTEK 2005 in New York City, August 1-3 at Booth #603.

New Avaya Solutions Speed Development and Deployment of Speech Applications for Gold Systems, Language Line Services
The market for speech automation is growing at a brisk rate, with research firm Datamonitor estimating that spending in North America and EMEA will grow to roughly $1.6 billion by the end of 2009.

A company participating in early trials of the Avaya Voice Portal and Dialog Designer is Gold Systems, an independent software vendor that creates self service software for Fortune 1000 companies, including the insurance, financial services, retail and utilities industries and for large government agencies. Gold Systems is a member of the Avaya DeveloperConnection program, which promotes development of third-party products compatible with Avaya solutions.

In field trials of Avaya Dialog Designer, Gold Systems developed a trial speech application to automate order status inquiries for a large online bookseller.

"We found that Dialog Designer gave us great flexibility as we worked with the bookseller's Web service," said Herb Morreale, chief technology officer for Gold Systems. "Dialog Designer automatically determines the types of information available through a Web service and enables us to easily write the code needed to get to that information, and share it with a caller via speech."

Another company undergoing trials of Avaya self service is Language Line Services, which provides on-demand over-the-phone language interpretation services 24/7, in over 150 languages, for consumers and businesses. Language Line is trialing Avaya Voice Portal to meet their customer needs around the world.

"Avaya Voice Portal delivers the high-availability and multilingual capabilities that are key to our support of customers and Interpreters located around the globe," said Thomas Sterns, director, Advanced Technology Development for Language Line. "The ability to distribute voice self service support across our contact center infrastructure helps ensure callers successfully and quickly reach our Interpreters anywhere they are located around the world - whether in our contact center or taking calls from home."

"Avaya Voice Portal enables businesses to bring the power of voice to self service solutions-a critical element of customer service in an 'always on' world," said Eileen Rudden, vice president and general manager, Enterprise Communications Applications pision, Avaya. "With advanced levels of open standards support and high availability, the Avaya Voice Portal gives businesses all of the tools required to develop and deploy more intelligent speech self service that makes customers more satisfied and businesses more profitable."

Standards Support and Platforms for Avaya Voice Portal and Dialog Designer
The Avaya Voice Portal and Dialog Designer support many of the most common software standards including Java2, JDBC, Java Servlet, Web Services Description Language (WSDL), SOAP and XML.

The Avaya Voice Portal runs across Session Initiation Protocol (SIP) and H.323 compliant media gateways, as well as traditional TDM architectures. It can be deployed on IBM WebSphere Application Server, Apache Tomcat, and other Java2 based services. Its distributed high-performance VoiceXML 2.0 media-processing software runs on any certified Red Hat Linux Enterprise 3.0 Intel or AMD platform. Also supported are standard speech engines through the MRCP standard. MRCP standard engines include IBM WebSphere Voice Server and the ScanSoft Open Speech Recognizer.

About Avaya
Avaya Inc. designs, builds and manages communications networks for more than one million businesses worldwide, including over 90 percent of the FORTUNE 500 ®. Focused on businesses large to small, Avaya is a world leader in secure and reliable Internet Protocol telephony systems and communications software applications and services.

Driving the convergence of voice and data communications with business applications - and distinguished by comprehensive worldwide services - Avaya helps customers leverage existing and new networks to achieve superior business results. For more information visit the Avaya Web site: http://www.avaya.com

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