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Cisco Unveils Mobile Visual Collaboration Tech
Posted March 27, 2012
Cisco Unveils Mobile Visual Collaboration Tech
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By Jennifer LeClaire. Updated March 27, 2012 11:38AM

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Cisco on Tuesday introduced innovations that aim to streamline collaboration in a post-PC era. From new Jabber options to an enhanced TelePresence system, Cisco is moving to optimize collaboration for the mobile world.

Cisco is extending its Jabber software to the iPad and Windows. Jabber is already available for Android, iOS, Mac, BlackBerry and Cisco Cius tablets. By adding Windows and iPad to the mix, consumers can tap into HD video, voice, presence, instant messaging, desktop sharing, conferencing and visual voicemail from almost any device.

Cisco is also expanding native integration between Jabber and TelePresence to give mobile users a way to initiate and connect to a TelePresence session no matter where they are. Meanwhile, Cisco launched TX9000, a three-screen immersive version of its TelePresence software with advanced collaboration capabilities that integrates with WebEx and is also interoperable with other vendors.

Cisco's Mobile-Video Play

"In a world that is increasingly mobile, social, visual and virtual, individuals are dictating how, when and where they communicate and collaborate inside and outside of the workplace," said OJ Winge, senior vice president and general manager, Collaboration Endpoints Technology Group at Cisco. Winge said Cisco is pushing the "any device to any device" reality.

Cisco is announcing all of these innovations against the backdrop of the rise of mobile video. According to Cisco's latest Visual Networking Index, globally, 3 trillion minutes or 6 million years of video content will cross the Internet each month in 2015. Global mobile data traffic will reach 10.8 exabytes per month, growing 18-fold from 2011 to 2016. By 2016, mobile video will represent 71 percent of all mobile data traffic.

Cisco Jabber releases for Windows and iPad can be used with on-premises and cloud-based deployment options. Cisco expects to make the solution available in the second quarter. The TX9000 will also begin shipping in the second quarter, with the advanced collaboration and content-sharing features targeted for availability later this year. List pricing starts at $299,000 in the U.S.

The Evolution of TelePresence

Zeus Kerravala, an analyst at ZK Research, said Cisco has a vested interest in moving toward the post-PC world as fast as possible because it hurts rival Microsoft. The faster clients are built for iPad and Android devices, he said, the better Cisco's competitive position.

"I think Microsoft Lync is a better presence system in an all-Windows shop," Kerravala said. "If you are going to a multi-device, multi-OS world, I think Jabber is a better solution."

On the TelePresence front, Kerravala believes Cisco's first stab was a good effort to bring people together. But he has long argued that the ability to collaborate is limited because the system determined what the viewer sees. The new TX9000 untethers all the viewing windows from the screen.

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