UC Vendor Genband Opens Online App Showcase

Genband, which rapidly grew its UC portfolio by buying Nortel's business, is opening its online GenApps showcase to give customers a look at its portfolio of IP communications software.

Genband is the latest technology company looking to increase business by creating an online presence to show businesses and service providers interested in IP communications its wide array of applications.

The solution areas initially being featured in the GenApps online showcase, which was announced Dec. 7, include UC (unified communications), integrated audio, video and UC collaboration, enterprise mobility and advanced messaging.

App stores have been key drivers-and competitive focal points-for smartphone and mobile OS vendors, including Apple and Google, with its Android operating system. Companies that sell enterprise applications also are pushing online stores, such as Salesforce.com's AppExchange site, which offers cloud computing solutions.

Genband is hoping to generate similar interest among service providers and users around its GenApps showcase.

"Service providers around the globe depend on Genband's industry-leading portfolio of IP solutions to transition to their networks and deliver new tools that enhance the subscriber's communications experience," Mehmet Balos, Genband's chief marketing offier, said in a statement. "Our virtual showcase demonstrates the myriad ways that service providers can increase revenues and subscriber growth by offering new, sophisticated IP communication applications that improve productivity and business communications."

Through the showcase, service providers and businesses can take a look at applications created by Genband, partners and third-party developers, see how they run and then work directly with Genband or any of the other developers to buy the apps, according to Genband officials.

Genband rapidly grew its business profile in the IP communications market earlier this year when it bought bankrupt Nortel Networks' VOIP (voice over IP) business for $182 million. After closing on the deal for Nortel's CVAS (Carrier VOIP and Application Solutions) in May, Genband officials went out to talk to more than 100 customers to give them a roadmap of the product portfolios.

Now the company is looking to give customers at look at the applications it offers. All applications are powered by the vendor's A2 Converged Application Server and Genband Genius platform.

The initial applications featured in the GenApps store will include UC offerings that combined enterprise voice, e-mail, video conferencing, presence and mobility into a converged network. Among the applications will be Genband's Personal Communicator PC client, a PC-based call control solution that lets users perform such communications tasks as handle incoming calls, manage voice mail and send and receive texts from their computers.

Applications around integrated audio, video and UC collaboration conferencing to enable users to more easily conduct online conferences, while a mobility application lets customers transform their smartphones into hosted-IP office extensions.

Another application is for a personal agent Web portal that lets users personalize their communications services, and advanced messaging applications to better manage their messages.

Other applications that will be put in the app showcase over the coming months include Web 2.0 customer service offerings that integrate tasks such as instant messaing and video applications into a company's Website, CRM (customer relationship management) offerings and applications aimed at particular verticals, including health care, government and education.

Developers also will be able to test their applications within a community sandbox, and will be able to upload their offerings into the GenApps showcase.