Equipped with a 5-megapixel rear facing camera and a 720p HD camera on the front, the 7-inch tablet is being touted as potent collaboration and communications platform by the company: “Cisco Cius offers HD video streaming and real-time video, multi-party conferencing, email, messaging, browsing, and the ability to produce, edit and share content stored locally or centrally in the cloud.”
As for connectivity, only 802.11 a/b/g/n and 3G will be supported at launch (first quarter of 2011), with a 4G variant set to follow later. Cisco has promised that the Cius would be priced below $1000.
If you dropped Facebook out of protest last month (which you probably didn't), and find yourself on the market for another social networking site (which you probably aren't), than you might be excited to hear Cisco is preparing to launch a new professional social networking site later in the year.
Cisco's General Manager of enterprise collaboration Murali Sitaram describes the service currently dubbed "Quad" as a place where professionals can take advantage of existing voice and video conferencing technologies offered by the company. He claims it is a "natural transition" to help fuel future technologies that will revolve around collaboration and communication.
It looks like the overall goal of the service is to marry together popular concepts like micro blogging with more immediate communication tools like live video for professional environments. For example, "if you find someone available in the network with knowledge that's useful for your project, you can start a video chat or web conference with them right away, rather than sending a message and waiting for a response".
Quad also hopes to include the ability to create personalized home pages, and host company specific content with ties into SharePoint and Documentern. Clearly Cisco is hoping this service will be adopted by firms to help replace aging intranet's that host mostly static, and outdated information.
Quad appears to be taking a unique approach, but does anyone out there think it will actually catch on?
According to a Bloomberg report, networking specialist Cisco plans to hire about 3,000 workers globally. Cisco CEO John Chambers said the hiring will be divided into two periods.
If Cisco goes through with this, it means the company will be making good on Chamber's comments last month, in which the CEO said he plans to accelerate hiring, particularly in sales and new markets. Cisco already added 1,000 new employees in its third quarter, which ended at the beginning of May.
This also represents somewhat of a worker-rebound for Cisco, which slashed about 2,000 jobs at the end of fiscal 2009. At the time, Cisco also halted hiring, closed some offices, and cut back on travel expenses.
Networking specialist Cisco this week reported its third quarter earnings for the period ended May 1, 2010, noting third quarter net sales of $10.4 billion. Net income (GAAP) came out to $2.2 billion, or $0.37 per share, while non-GAAP net income reached $2.5 billion, or $0.42 per share.
"Our financial results were outstanding, achieving record level revenue and earnings per share results. We witnessed a return to strong balanced growth across geographies, products and customer segments that we haven't seen since before the global economic challenges began. We emerge from this downturn gaining market share, a larger share of the total wallet spend of our customers, dramatically improved customer relations as a trusted technology and business partner, and having next-generation products in almost every product category. It is clear that our game plan for how to handle economic downturns is hitting on all cylinders," said John Chambers, chairman and CEO of Cisco.
Chambers went on to say that Cisco's operations exceeded expectations in every measurement perspective, including revenues, earnings per share, new products, successful acquisitions, and internal startups. In other words, it was a heck of a quarter for Cisco.
Pretty soon, it might be easier to take inventory of who isn't planning to release a tablet, though we're not quite there yet. In the meantime, you can add Cisco to the list of potential tablet makers, however unlikely that may seem.
The rumor comes courtesy of an email response to CNET's Buzz Out Loud podcast. According to the email, Cisco is working on a business-oriented 7-inch tablet built around Google's Android platform. Little other details were offered up, such as what kind of processor it might come with, a targeted release date, or what price point Cisco would shoot for. But if it is geared towards businesses, it's probably a safe bet that it would come preloaded with the company's WebEX software.
Cisco hasn't commented on the rumor, probably because there's nothing in the pipeline. With the spate of tablets on the horizon, Cisco would be jumping into crowded waters, and it's not yet clear if the whole tablet craze is a viable market or a passing fad.
This has been a long while in the making, but networking specialist Cisco over the weekend announced it has completed its "voluntary offer" for Tangberg, a video communications company.
"Today we are celebrating a very important step for our customers in the journey to put people at the center of collaboration and change the way we work," said Marthin De Beer, senior vice president, Emerging Technologies Business Group, Cisco. "We strongly believe that telepresence – the next generation of videoconferencing – along with Cisco's entire rich collaboration portfolio, powers this new way of working where everyone, everywhere, can be more productive throughthe pervasive use of video and face-to-face collaboration."
Cisco has shoved the entire Tandberg product line into its TelePresence portfolio, which the company says now provides customers with access to a fully integrated architecture, a comprehensive network-based endpoint, and a suite of customizable apps and deployment models.
When you're finished viewing Netflix movies and reading Marvel comics on your iPad, you can get some work done by downloading Cisco's WebEx Meeting Center app. WebEx is a free business application that allows users to put their heads together online and collaborate with a series of finger taps.
"This latest innovation continues to showcase Cisco's ongoing commitment to bringing the value of collaboration to users on their device of choice," said Debra Chrapaty, senior vice president and general manager, Cisco Collaboration Software Group. "When a powerful collaboration solution like Cisco WebEx Meeting Center for the iPad is combined with an intuitive and WiFi enabled user experience, businesses and users both win."
The WebEx app gives iPad users access to the all the features available in the collaboration product, including the ability to view shared presentations, participate in meetings, see who's talking, converse privately, and more. VoIP communication through WebEx is also included.
Keeping the Linksys name alive, parent company Cisco on Wednesday unveiled a new line of wireless routers, the Linksys E-Series. The sleek looking lineup is part of Cisco's effort to streamline its Linksys routers, as well as showcase the company's new Cisco Connect software.
"Linksys pioneered the first home router 10 years ago, and 50 million units later is the world's leading provider of home wireless routers," said Jonathan Kaplan, senior vice president and general manager of Cisco Consumer Products. "The new E-Series caters to Linksys' core technology-minded consumer base, with a simplified product lineup that is ideal for today's sophisticated home network user."
There are five new routers in all, including the E1000 Wireless-N, E2000 Advanced Wireless-N, E2100L Advanced Wireless-N with Linux, E3000 High-Performance Wireless-N (dual-band), and AE1000 High-Performance Wireless-N USB Adapter. Each one comes with Cisco's Connect Software designed to simplify the process of setting up and configuring settings, such as auto-assigning the WPA security passkey and SSID.
Pricing has been set to $70 (AE1000), $80 (E1000), $120 (E2000 and E2100L), and $180 (E3000).
According to Cisco, IT departments are crying out for more collaboration tools, even though many employees feel constrained by corporate policies.
Be that as it may, a recent global study by Cisco suggests that 77 percent of IT decision makers plan to increase spending on collaboration tools this year. Left to their own devices, more than a quarter of those surveyed who work at organizations that prohibit the use of social media applications admitted altering the settings on their corporate gadgets in order to gain access, saying they "need the tools to get the job done."
Of those who said they expect spending to increase on collaboration tools, 56 percent said such spending would likely increase by at least 10 percent, and probably more. India and China seem to be the most progressive in adopting the technology, Cisco said, though the majority of IDTMs recognize the importance of collaboration tools, specifically the need for better video conferencing equipment, Web conferencing, and Internet Protocol telephony.
Oh, Cisco. What a tease you are! The company's been pumping up the general Internet crowd for a game-changing announcement, one that would--and I quote--"forever change the Internet." I was honestly hoping that said unveiled device would be like, a super-crazy consumer router that would... well. I'm not really sure what it would do. Gigabit speeds are more than sufficient for anyone's home networking needs right now (when I'm looking for this column on a terabit connection in five years, I'll have a hearty laugh.) And it's not like we have a new wireless draft on the way any time soon.
It would have been nice and revolutionary for Cisco to embrace--you guessed it--a more open-source platform for its hardware devices. One, it's what I write about and, two, we're kind of in a hardware lull, don't you think? When it comes to consumer routing and switching devices, there's only so much one can do. Aside from adding on new antennas, shifting antennas around in new ways, or adding more ports to the back of a device, what's really propelling router technology forward nowadays?