Avaya Flare Flames the iPad
Okay, so that title is way off base. Avaya didn’t release the Flare with the intent of dethroning the iPad. It is not being introduced with that Napoleonic dream in mind. However, it is a really cool device. The Flare begins to include the kinds of features that would finally get me to buy a tablet. With a slim profile it is a phone, video conferencing center, contact management system, presence manager and it can email and provide web access. The user interface is a very contemporary touch screen with sharp colors and images tablet users expect. But, the Flare is not a tablet. It is the next generation in how the desktop phone, video and collaboration tools should be integrated. The only downside for the device is the price. I found a list price of $2,208 on the web. That is a lot!
So, how will the Flare fare? A lot depends on the interest of C-level executives in having this really cool device on their desks or on boardroom conference tables, which is too bad, because a device like this is made to be portable. The size is not issue for me, as it has a Bluetooth interface and can incorporate a headset to place and receive calls. (Wi-Fi would need to be supplemented with 3G/4G to replace my cell phone though.)
Finally, it incorporates Unified Communications features and collaboration better than any other device I have seen to date. As for Napoleonic dreams, it is said that Avaya is already porting the Flare’s functionality to the iPad and I would imagine also Android based tablets. They clearly recognize that their expertise is in business communications not consumer electronics.
Since Broadvox is a member of the Avaya DevConnect program, I wonder if I could get a discount for the purchase of a Flare. Say 90%?