Opinion

Avaya adds a bit of Mojo to its line-up

Interest and, dare I say it, a little excitement, is mounting over the imminent debut of an Avaya tablet device after the firm passed a device referred to as a 'Tablet PC'  through the FCC.

The photo obtained by WirelessGoodness shows what is pretty self-evidently an Avaya-branded iPad-style device that appears to have been built with some assistance from high-end audio kit builder Harman-Kardon.

But a bit of digging on the subject reveals that MicroScope's sister publication ComputerWeekly.com was first to confirm the existence of the long-talked about device  back in March when it landed an exclusive chat with Avaya EMEA heavyweight Michael Bayer.

So, it's called Mojo, and it's a Java-based, touchscreen, wi-fi enabled device that will assume a distinct "personality" based on what applications are loaded.

Mojo is not an executive toy, according to Bayer, but rather a "soft" machine suitable for various working environments.

At the time it already had software clients for voice, video, session management as well as third party apps developed for the hospitality sector.

What it won't do, however, is support mobile telephony, as Avaya wants to remain an open system and mobile capabilities would scupper that aim. But then the iPad isn't a mobile phone either and none of the early adopters seem to be complaining about that...

CW.com suggested that this product would help Avaya gain ground against its biggest rivals, Microsoft on desktop apps and Cisco on network apps.

So, the lines are now being drawn for what now appears to be an incontrovertible enterprise-tablet war among the vendor heavyweights; we know HP is likely ramping up its tablet project having bought Palm, and in April there was even talk that Cisco was sniffing around the concept.

But in this world of cost cuts, hosted services and recurring revenues, it will be interesting to learn how the channel will be able to make the case for investment in such devices.

This was first published in June 2010

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