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Avaya's New Mobile Emergency Communication Units Help Close Critical Disaster Gap for Businesses and Public Sector

For Immediate Release: 24-Apr-2006

BASKING RIDGE, N.J. – In the wake of the devastating impact to communications resulting from natural disasters such as Hurricane Katrina, Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chairman Kevin J. Martin has called for communications systems that are capable of rapid deployment and/or restoration and use of multiple, flexible technologies in a truly mobile infrastructure1.

Avaya Inc. (AV: NYSE) has responded to this call with its new Mobile Communication System (MCS), self-contained communications units specifically designed for use in mobile or temporary locations.

"Often the biggest challenge in actual disasters is the lack of available and flexible communication systems," said Steve Hailey, senior consultant, Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery, Avaya. "Governments and businesses can no longer afford to let disaster communication systems be something nice to have - these are a must-have. Avaya's new Mobile Communication System will keep organizations communicating in the worst possible situations."

The Avaya MCS launched today enables businesses and public sector organizations to quickly set up command centers with complete, secure voice and data communications to support business continuity, disaster response and recovery, or short-term events. Avaya is a leading global provider of business communications applications, systems and services.

Arlington County Fire Department
As the primary First Responder to the Pentagon on 9/11, Arlington County Fire Department became acutely aware of the need for a mobile communications system to support remote command center operations. The organization recognized the need for a system that surpassed capabilities available via two-way radio and cell phones. Ideally, a mobile system should have advanced communications to connect people and information in a variety of locations over any type of network and interoperate among a number of devices.

"Our goal is to give our Incident Command Team the same communications support capabilities at the scene of an emergency as they would have in the office," said John White, Assistant Fire Chief, Arlington County Fire Department.

Today, Arlington County Fire Department's Mobile Command Unit is a 40-foot, fully-equipped office-on-wheels that leaves the bay whenever a call reaches three alarms or more, or when the team will be at a site for more than 12 hours. The Avaya Mobile Communication System inside provides full voice and data capabilities, and automatically searches among landline, microwave, three cellular providers, Internet and satellite networks for the best and least cost available network to connect to the public switched telephone network. Avaya IP desktop telephones support each of the 12 inside workstations, with Avaya IP Wireless telephones ready to carry when the Incident Commander needs to be more mobile on the scene.

Ready to roll: fully configured, voice and data in a ruggedized container
The Avaya Mobile Communication System brings together a wide range of voice and data capabilities in a fully configured package that can be up and running in less than an hour. The MCS provides IP telephony via Avaya Communication Manager or Avaya one-X™ Quick Edition, basic voice messaging, data networking, and connectivity to a variety of networks: landline, radio, cellular, satellite2, microwave, WiFi, data, cable modem or DSL. A number of options are also available for pre-configured and custom versions, including wireless IP phones, VPN appliances, wireless access points and satellite uplink equipment to broaden the unit’s capabilities.

For businesses and organizations with robust communications needs, the MCS with Avaya Communication Manager offers full, enterprise functionality. Built-in encryption and optional VPN tunneling enable an organization to securely integrate command center communications with private wide area networks. This allows off-site or field workers access to colleagues, directories and databases, and to input information directly from the remote location as if they were in the office. The MCS with Avaya one-X Quick Edition allows rapid deployment that requires little technical knowledge and allows an organization to quickly adapt to changing circumstances. A customized version of the MCS can also be built by an Avaya Global Services Specialist to meet specific needs.

Each new unit includes 16 hours of Business Continuity Consulting by Avaya Global Services Professional Consultants to help plan and design the solution that best suits their needs. Avaya Professional Service consultants boast varied backgrounds in security and disaster recovery planning.

The MCS is priced between $28,000 and $49,800, including phones, uninterruptible power supply and all components from the rugged case to the staging costs. It is scheduled to be available in North America in early June through Avaya direct and channel sales.

Sidebar: Republican Governors Association
Although the Republican Governors’ Association (RGA) headquarters in Washington, D.C., during campaign season the organization regularly sets up offices in cities around the nation. For the RGA, the Mobile Communication System provides easy-to-deploy, cost-effective voice and data capabilities from a hotel meeting room that enables the organization to connect back to its main offices.

"We do many different meetings in different cities. In some cases, we move our entire operation and virtually no one is in the headquarters," said Chris Adams, IT director, Republican Governors' Association. "The MCS allows us to have all communications functionality we need in the hotel. We link the system into our main offices, so members can still be reached by dialing their Washington desktop extension."

RGA uses the Avaya Communication Manager version of the MCS with built-in media encryption and the VPN tunneling option to enable a secure connectivity back to the home offices. For the well-connected organization, Avaya's Extension to Cellular bridges calls to RGA members to their portable telephony devices

About Avaya, Inc.
Avaya, Inc. designs, builds and manages communications networks for more than one million businesses worldwide, including over 90 percent of the FORTUNE 500®. Focused on businesses large to small, Avaya is a world leader in secure and reliable Internet Protocol telephony systems and communications software applications and services.

Driving the convergence of voice and data communications with business applications - and distinguished by comprehensive worldwide services - Avaya helps customers leverage existing and new networks to achieve superior business results. For more information visit the Avaya Web site:

About the FIFA World Cup and Avaya
As the Official Convergence Communication provider for the 2006 FIFA World Cup™, Avaya is providing a champion communications network for the World’s largest sporting event. The converged network – that combines voice and data on the same infrastructure – will connect the 12 host stadiums, the international media centres in Munich, Berlin and Dortmund and the FIFA headquarters in Berlin. Players, coaches, volunteers and fans alike will benefit from the Avaya network that will be instrumental in player and journalist accreditation, the reporting of results, material tracking, accommodation confirmations, transportation, and ticketing among other critical functions. With an estimated 45,000 network connections, 30,000 network devices and over 15 terabytes (or 15,000,000,000 bytes) of data, it is the largest converged communication network ever built for a sporting event.

1Hearing on Communication in a Disaster; Kevin J. Martin, chairman, FCC. September 22, 2005. Written statement provided to the U.S. Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation.

2Subscriptions to cellular and satellite providers must be purchased separately.

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