Avaya will make it possible to turn an iPhone into a node on the corporate PBX (Private Branch Exchange) network, something iPhone users (if not corporate phone executives) want.

Avaya has announced an iPhone version of its one-X Mobile client software that communicates with corporate Avaya VoIP PBXs, giving the phones quick access to PBX phone-extension functions, such as conferencing, three-digit dialling and voice mail. The software will be available early next year.

Users of an iPhone equipped with the one-X client can dial through an Avaya Communication Manager server, and the caller ID on the receiving phone will display the desktop phone number of the caller. Similarly, calls to the desktop phone number can be made to ring on the iPhone, Avaya says. The iPhone also can access work voice-mail.

Avaya iPhone support could solve a problem faced by IT executives worried about employees using unauthorized devices on the corporate network. With the one-X client, iPhones and their corporate use would be managed. A recent survey by IDC says 70 per cent of current or likely iPhone users would want to use the devices at least in part for work.

"The reality is that many enterprises out there have mobile workforces using a variety of devices from a variety of vendors. Enterprise solutions that support multiple mobile operating systems and reference designs for both smartphones and features phones have a distinct advantage in becoming pervasive productivity tools," says Sean Ryan, research analyst, mobile enterprise device solutions at IDC.

Also this week, Avaya is announcing one-X Mobile support for RIM, Palm, Java and WAP mobile devices.
In addition to the client software, Avaya one-X Mobile requires server software, which supports Avaya Communication Manager and Cisco CallManager IP PBXs.