As part of my gig at a Boston-area research firm, I get to meet interesting people and listen to their technology positionings and hear more about what's cookin' in their market and their company. Earlier in March, several executives from AVST (Denny Michael, VP Marketing and Tom Minifie, VP PLM) visited and shared their view of the market and several innovations they planned to announce at VoiceCon. It was my first introduction to AVST, which of course, is some 25 years old and has thousands of customers.

Since most of my experiences have been in the 'platform' space, I'm only beginning to appreciate the opportunity and role of a class of market participant that I've called the 'Best-of-Breed.' AVST is one of these. The company positions itself as a leader in voicemail, voicemail as email, and call routing/screening/filtering capabilities. Customers are most often those enterprises with more than one brand of platforms (IP PBX) in their infrastructures. This way messaging can be an enterprise-wide application without having to homogenize the telephony platform.

AVST describes multiple architectures to address multiple segment needs through four options: server-based, client-based, simplified and now secure. The secure implementation is a web browser driven control for voice mail including download to play. Ideal for 'discovery-conscious' law firms or those in highly regulated industries such as pharmaceuticals, tobacco or securities where voicemails should not be mixed in with email but instead left on a separate server or appliance. In this way a user with a browser can retrieve voicemail and initiate voicemails for others.

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