Siemens Enterprise Communications is bringing greater virtualization capabilities, a new hosted model and bundled applications to its OpenScape UC Server 2010 platform, announced at the VoiceCon show. Siemens also announced an expanded partnership with VMware.
Siemens Enterprise Communications is looking to take advantage of
virtualization and other technologies to make it easier for enterprises to
bring unified communications into their data centers.
Siemens, at the VoiceCon show in Orlando,
Fla., on March 23, unveiled OpenScape UC
Server 2010, which offers greater virtualization capabilities and a cloud-based
model for its UC offerings that run in across multiple platforms.
In addition, Siemens
announced a partnership with VMware to create virtualized UC solutions.
Siemens is essentially offering virtualized versions of the
solutions in the OpenScape UC platform, according to Paul McMillan, director of
technical UC vision and strategy in Siemens' office of the CTO.
"It's another medium to deploy our products into the data
center and have them run on a common architecture," McMillan said in an
Virtualization offers businesses a host of advantages, from
greater energy efficiency to a smaller data center footprint, he said. Already
familiar with server and storage virtualization, customers over the past couple
of years had begun asking Siemens for virtualized versions of their UC
offerings, McMillan said.
A key step in OpenScape UC Server 2010 is the offering of
applications in a software-based virtual appliance, a hardware-agnostic virtual
machine packaged with applications that can be managed by an IT administrator's
data center tools. All that leads to easier deployment and management, and no
vendor lock-in, he said.
Being hardware-agnostic is also a key differentiator for
Siemens, McMillan said.
The VMware partnership will extend Siemens' virtualization
"Our companies share a common goal of delivering real-time
communications as a virtual appliance, thereby enabling UC technologies to
leverage the benefits of the VMware platform," Parag Patel, vice president
of alliances at VMware, said in a statement.
Siemens is offering hosted editions of the new UC platform for
service providers, which can bring UC capabilities to their customers on a
pay-as-you-go subscription model. McMillan said the company will lower the
financial barrier for businesses interested in UC by providing the applications
as the businesses need them, and without businesses having to bring them into
their own data centers.
OpenScape UC Server 2010 comes with OpenScape Fusion, an
integration capability that enables the UC server to tie together non-Siemens
UC systems, Web collaboration systems, social media tools like Twitter and
Google Latitude, and Web-based business portals like Salesforce.com.
McMillan said 25 percent of enterprises have adopted UC, but
for that number to grow, vendors need to open up their offerings.