By Mark Hilton, Product Line Manager LAN Edge Solutions, HP Networking
Last week, I read a CRN article by Chad Berndtson that may have caused some confusion over the direction of HP’s VoIP telephony product line. It takes some time to adapt to any shift in direction. Misunderstandings can occur. This said, I want to offer up some clarifying points.
At HP, we see VoIP as just one of the components in an overall UC&C solution. Our strategy in this space is to be the preferred networking infrastructure provider by providing market leading, integrated solutions with industry leading UC&C application providers.
Commitment to VCX and resellers
I want emphasize that we are fully committed to our reseller base that are key to our success in the market. This includes the segment of our resellers who have been successfully selling VCX.
VCX is a great product—and we believe it can continue to have a successful impact on its targeted market. The VCX is a solid IP telephony offering that is most successful in the SMB space.
So far, we have been doing joint UC&C development with Microsoft, Avaya and Aastra as part of our AllianceONE program. In the case of Microsoft and Avaya, we’ve developed unique products based on our zl services module. You can find more information on these products here.
We leave it to our resellers to chart the best course for their business. We then support them through interoperability, open standards and migration guides if that course takes them away from VCX over time. Our networking programs are currently deployed worldwide supporting VoIP & UC&C solutions from Mitel, Shortel, Aastra, Microsoft, Avaya, Alcatel Lucent and Cisco, to mention just a few.
We will continue to sell the full VCX portfolio and will provide any updates necessary to keep its quality high and ensure its continued availability as long as we see demand for the product. We believe this demand can continue on for years into the future. The term” maintenance” mode as used in the CRN article does not mean we are shutting down the product line.
After the upcoming spring release, we will have completed the features that we originally set out to provide for the target market. This will allow us to divert some of our R&D resources to other areas of our business to help us to drive further growth. We strongly believe this shift is not only in the best interest of HP but also our resellers and end customers as the market trends toward UC&C and cloud solutions.
As with all products, the VCX will eventually reach the end of its useful life just as the NBX did. At that time we will announce our intention to end the sale of VCX. That time is not now. Even after an eventual end of sale, we will offer continued hardware and software maintenance to support the installed base as well as support for migration to other market leading solutions.
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