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1Unified Communications Alternatives for Small Business

Cisco describes its UC 500 for SMBs as office in a box. With its core routing and switching, wireless, VoIP, security and video technologies, Cisco is an all-in-one unified communications provider.

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With its own share of hardware (routers and switches, storage, servers, etc.), HP has partnered with Microsoft to bring the Microsoft unified communications platform to its small business and mid-sized business customers.

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Although it’s now part of the HP family, 3Com’s product portfolios are still separate from its new parent company (for now, anyway). The company provides PB-IPX unified communications products, as well as office-in-a-box solutions.

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Broadcore offers business-class hosted UC services that include telephony, messaging, presence, conferencing, mobility and video.

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BroadSoft provides hosted unified communications solutions for SMBs. The solution integrates telephony, mobility, video, email, IM, office applications and workforce applications.

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Alteva builds hosted unified communications based on the Microsoft UC platform. It includes applications like messaging, voice, video and web conferencing at the desktop and via mobile devices.

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Mitel offers both solutions and managed service options to SMB customers. The company offers the Mitel 3000 Communications System for businesses with up to 52 employees, but it also provides hosted offerings for fixed monthly fees.