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No Jitter Roll: TADHack-mini Winners & Latest Integrations

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In this week’s No Jitter Roll, we share the latest on UC management, an AI and automation bundle, two headsets, a managed network solution, and the winning hacks from the TADHack-mini that took place in Phoenix, coincident with Avaya Engage.
 
VOSS, Nectar Release Integrations
At Avaya Engage this week, UC management provider VOSS Solutions announced that UC administrators can now get a single view into Avaya UC and Microsoft Teams solutions through the Voss-4-UC management platform. With the existing Avaya UC VOSS-4-UC management portal extended to Teams, administrators will be able to see and control all users, numbers, devices, and associates services for both solutions, according to VOSS. It utilizes Microsoft Direct Routing to connect the two platforms.
 
VOSS touts this as a solution allowing companies to continue their use of Avaya’s voice calling capabilities while bringing on Teams for collaboration.
 
In other integration news, UC and contact center monitoring and management software provider Nectar Services announced an integration between its Customer Experience (CX) Assurance platform and Nectar Diagnostics, its UC network diagnostic network monitoring tool. By integrating UC network diagnostics into CX Assurance, Nectar is enabling enterprises to perform real-time media monitoring, signaling analysis, and network path and event correlations for their contact center operations. This adds to CX Assurance’s suite of contact center testing capabilities, including auto-discovery, voice recognition and simulation, dynamic call automation, and load testing.
 
Unlimited Bots With NICE
Enterprise automation software provider NICE unveiled a robotic process automation (RPA) package for users of its NICE Employee Virtual Attendants (NEVA). The NEVA Unlimited program provides unlimited automation bots for enterprises that meet certain terms and conditions, including the purchase of over 200 NEVA licenses for a subscription term of at least one year but no more than five years. NEVA Unlimited includes NICE's Automation Studio, design tools, optical character recognition, and a range of modules designed to boost automation deployment, according to NICE.
 
Logitech Gets Wired
This week, Logitech revealed two wired USB headsets, the Zone Wired Unified Communications (UC) and a Microsoft Teams-certified version.
 
Both headsets will be compatible with Microsoft Teams, as well as Zoom, Cisco Jabber, BlueJeans, GoToMeeting, and other calling applications, and come with a tangle-free cable and USB Type-A or Type-C connectivity, according to Logitech. Via the Logi Tune app, users will be able to adjust volume settings and toggle active noise cancellation on and off. Additionally, the Teams version will include unique Teams UI and control buttons to launch Teams meetings or calls directly from the headset, Logitech said.
 
The headsets will be available in spring 2020 starting at $130, and personal collaboration kits with a Logitech webcam will be available late spring and cost $250-$300, according to Logitech.
 
TPx Communications Adds Managed Network Solution
Managed service provider TPx Communications expanded its portfolio with MSx Networks, a managed network solution for Wi-Fi, security, SD-WAN, and switching. Created with Cisco Meraki technology, the new service includes hardware, software and hardware licensing, 24/7 monitoring, deployment and management services, configuration backups, and firmware upgrades, according to TPx.
Winners of the 2020 TADHack-mini Phoenix
This week, Avaya announced the winners of the 2020 TADHack-mini Phoenix, sponsored by Google and GitHub. Using Avaya OneCloud CPaaS, Google Dialogflow, and other technologies, hackers created software that addressed unique challenges for the education and healthcare sectors and the Phoenix-based charity St. Mary’s Food Bank, Avaya said. Roughly 100 teams from universities, businesses, channel partners, and private programming groups participated in the hackathon either in-person or remotely, according to Avaya.
 
The categories and winners for each include:
  • Education - Stephen Drew won $4,000 for his "Middle School Parent Line" hack, which allowed parents to report absences, get student GPAs and homework, and initiate conversations with teachers via SMS. Drew created the program with Avaya CPaaS for voice and SMS, Google Dialogflow, MongoDB Cloud, Apache NiFi, and Apache Tomcat.
  • Healthcare - Michigan State University student Nick Kwiatkowski won $4,000 for his cellular-connected EKG unit, which communicated results to remote healthcare workers for diagnosing, triage, and possible escalation, based on a patient’s cardiovascular health. The IoT device signaled a mediation server, with patient/healthcare communications conducted through voice calls, MMS, and other methods.
  • St. Mary's Food Bank - Vlastik Walker, John Zechlin, and David Anderson took home $4,000 for their "GooVaya" hack, a text bot for use in texting donations or notices about volunteering at St. Mary's Food Bank. The team also created a connector between Avaya CPaaS and Google Dialogflow.
In addition, Darryl Jackman and Jambu Atchison for their unified voice and SMS cloud IVR, and Mike Cairn for a chatbot that matched food surplus from food waste to food demand. As it happens, Jackman, a business automation developer with Marine Rescue Technologies, participated at Enterprise Connect 2019 on a mainstage panel appropriately titled, “Empowering Your Organization for a Developer-Focused Future.”
 
To see more hackers in action, make sure to check out TADHack-mini Orlando, taking place March 28 and 29, the weekend before Enterprise Connect. Can't make the hackathon? Then, join us Monday, March 30, for a hackathon report session, where Alan Quayle, hackathon host, and winners will be on hand to discuss how they solved problems using programmable communications.

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