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Cisco Collaboration Summit: Notes from Day 1

It’s always nice to have your CEO stop by your event’s opening keynote. So it’s safe to say that Cisco’s Rowan Trollope had a pretty good day after CEO Chuck Robbins joined him on stage to say, “I fundamentally believe that you can’t build a digital business without collaboration.” And it’s a good way to kick things into high gear for this year’s Cisco Collaboration Summit.

And apparently the right shoes help, as Rowan pointed out: “I’m not wearing Converse, I’m wearing actual shoes — so something big must be happening today.” The something big is all about Cisco Spark.

2015-1208 spark announce

Spark Services Announcement
The new Cisco Spark Services deliver all the capabilities of the Cisco collaboration portfolio directly from the cloud, bringing together messaging, meetings, and calling – and connecting with our phones and video conferencing systems. Read More »

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Hollywood Got Collaboration Right

If you’ve ever tried to dial in to a conference call from the school’s carpool lane after dropping off your kids and ended up with the other parents honking at you while you tried to join, you won’t recognize Hollywood’s version of collaboration.

On TV shows, no one is ever searching for a conference dial-in and in the movies when the hero rushes out of the conference room her video call instantly transfers to her phone without missing a beat.

Unfortunately the real world isn’t like the movies.  Our daily work lives are filled with the frustrations of trying to get technologies to work well together, as we all deal with the reality of outdated, complex, and difficult to use collaboration tools.

When I took over Cisco’s Collaboration group three years ago, I got to experience the great products and see the great experiences we could deliver.  But I also saw where the sitcoms got their material.

I told my team that we not only have to pay attention to the details, but that we need to let the future inspire us as we drive towards a totally seamless collaboration experience.  One where the right information just appears when it is supposed to, when all the technology just works, and where people pop in and out of virtual spaces like magic: Just like you might see in a futuristic movie.

Imagine a work week when you didn’t need to say “I’ll set up a meeting as soon as I am back at my desk,” because setting up a meeting from your mobile device was actually easy to do. Or one in which you could spontaneously share a document with a colleague who called you, because every call is also a meeting.  Or one when joining a conference call from your car meant was a one-touch experience and didn’t require pulling over so you could write down the meeting number and password.

To get work done, people need to be able to message, meet and call each other without thinking about it and without stopping to consider what device they are using.  Whether they are on a room system, a desktop phone, or a mobile phone, they should all work the same.

When you get a call you should be able to answer on any of your devices–and if you want to change the device you are using, that should be easy too.

Today’s announcements about moving our core collaboration products to the cloud under a single platform, Spark, take us to this reality.

With the new Cisco Spark platform– and the groundbreaking new collaboration technologies built upon it–we can finally start to usher in that futuristic world we’ve all been dreaming of.  We can’t wait to share it with you.

Check out the replay of my keynote at Collaboration Summit where I go into detail about our latest collaboration announcements.

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What Is Rowan Trollope Announcing at Collaboration Summit?

What will Rowan announce at Collaboration Summit? It’s a popular question leading up to Tuesday’s keynote.

If you want to know, then I may be able to share a few things…

The first thing to share is that Cisco Collaboration is hot.  In Cisco’s last quarterly announcement, Collaboration has continued to grow and saw a 17% Y/Y increase. It’s great news for Cisco and great news for the organizations that look to Cisco for the best offerings in collaboration technology.

It’s the tenet of putting forth the “best offering” that, in my opinion, is responsible for our success. And will be responsible for our continued success in collaboration. Rowan has a philosophy of creating products that are delightful to use in all aspects. There is no compromise on quality.

The product designs are simple, clean, and it’s a pleasure to use them. This is evident through the red dot design awards we’ve received. Design is not just how a product looks, but also how it functions. As a frequent user of many Cisco collaboration products, I can tell you the experience is awesome and continues to be more awesome with each iteration.

At the Cisco Collaboration Summit:

  • Will Rowan announce new products?
  • Will Rowan announce new and better experiences?
  • Will Rowan talk about the Apple partnership?

I can only give you a definite maybe on those particular topics. However, you’ll hear announcements of some very cool and exciting things. If you’d like to know what they are, register to watch the live broadcast of the keynote sessions. Don’t miss the opportunity to hear it live and hear it first.

You will hear from:

Register Here
Live Keynote Broadcast
December 8

at 9am Pacific / 12 pm Eastern

Let us know what you think of the news afterward.  There will also be plenty of tweeting going on using the #csummit hashtag.  Watch for it and contribute.  We’d love to hear from you.

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Cisco Partner Weekly Rewind – December 4, 2015

Cisco Partners Weekly Rewind Banner-650

Each week, we’ll highlight the most important Cisco Partner Ecosystem news and stories, as well as point you to important, Cisco-related partner content you may have missed along the way. Here’s what you might have missed this week:

Off the Top

Cisco Collaboration Summit Next Week

The 8th annual Cisco Collaboration Summit kicks off next week in San Francisco.  You can follow live as Rowan Trollope, SVP/GM Cisco Collaboration Technology Group, will be discussing the latest updates to Cisco’s Collaboration strategy.

You can always expect something new to be announced here and I highly advise watching live on Tuesday to catch the latest Collaboration news right when it’s delivered on stage. Also, login to Twitter and join the social conversation using the event hashtag #csummit.

And be sure to check back right here next week on the partner blog for more from Collaboration Summit!

In the Channels News

Good Reads

Read More »

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Building a Developer Ecosystem

This is part of a series on the evolution of the Cisco Collaboration Cloud platform, exploring the technical and design principles behind its unique architecture.

So far in this series my colleagues have talked about various elements of our Cisco Collaboration Cloud platform. Rowan mentioned its origins and the problems we’re trying to solve. Jonathan discussed our approach to architecture for a platform that delivers innovative experiences for companies of all shapes, sizes, and deployments. And Jens hit home on user experience (no surprise from the guy who owns all of our user-facing apps).

My platform is about the platform itself. I believe that simple and open APIs unleash the power of a platform in ways that accelerate workflows and business processes, that result in driving user engagement.

I’m the new GM responsible for the Cisco cloud collaboration API strategy. My team cares most about three things when it comes to evolving our platforms for developers:

A Great Developer Experience: First and foremost, our goal is to make our APIs easy-to-learn and use. Developers want APIs to be comprehensive, yet simple so they can focus on their own applications rather than the complexity of a platform. We’ve gone to extreme lengths to make our APIs elegant, abstracting away the complexities of the underlying platform.

But even the smartest coders need help so our Tropo APIs are surrounded by handy quickstart guides, sample codes, and examples written by our support team, who are developers themselves. Our APIs are hosted on a free, open portal and enhanced by Cisco DevNet training and sandbox resources. Most important, we’re always available to chat. You can easily engage with us through a variety of channels including industry events and social media. Read More »

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