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Cisco TelePresence-as-a-Service Makes In-Person Collaboration Even More Accessible for All

In this global economy, the people you deal with are more dispersed than ever. Yet at the same time 75% of business executives consider in-person collaboration an imperative. The survey that revealed that figure is an interesting read, and validates experiences that we’ve all encountered first-hand. How many times have you experienced communications that were misinterpreted or failed to engage participants effectively, negatively impacting relationships, projects, and business outcomes? As the pace of business gets faster and more complex, how do you: get everyone on the same page; scale resources to be in more places at once; and maintain face-to-face relationships with widely dispersed colleagues, customers, agencies, partners and advisors?

Visual collaboration is the next stage for many businesses as they put in place collaboration strategies to drive even higher levels of productivity for their business. However, for some organizations the up-front costs — to deploy the technology, train or acquire the right IT skill set, and provide the needed consistent level of inter-connectivity — can be barriers preventing them from accelerating business impact through video.

With our October 16 announcement, customers now have more choice in how they consume visual collaboration with Cisco TelePresence-as-a-Service (TPaaS). Cisco TPaaS places the Cisco TelePresence infrastructure in the cloud, powered by Cisco’s best-in-class architecture and network and managed by trusted Cisco certified partners. With this as-a-Service offering, there are even more flexible options for the deployment of telepresence and the acceleration of business impact through video. With Cisco TPaaS delivered from the cloud, organizations experience a predictable OpEx model, simplify operations (including interoperability with legacy video solutions), reduce risk of technology obsolescence, free IT resources to focus on core and strategic initiatives, and gain capabilities to scale based on business demand.

Expanded Cisco TPaaS service options help users:

Meet any time with an in-person experience. New “rendezvous” meeting options provide a personal conference bridge which can be used to meet securely with your colleagues, customers and partners — no scheduling required.

Work the way they want/need to work. With cloud-based Cisco TPaaS, it is simpler and quicker for businesses to scale video and telepresence to those specific people who can create the greatest impact using video. Companies simply provide or lease the video and telepresence endpoints needed to meet users’ varying needs — from immersive in-room solutions to desktop to employees’ personal mobile devices. A qualified Cisco partner handles the rest.

Customize and control their meeting environment. New active meeting management options enable real-time meeting controls to help users create the appropriate atmosphere for the topic and attendee profile. For example, hosts can quickly and easily manage participant add or drops, creating personalized messages, changing the layout, muting background conversations, securing meeting access, extending a scheduled meeting or capturing a meeting roster.

In our November 14 webcast, our Cisco product experts will provide more detail on Cisco TPaaS and other cloud collaboration announcements, and also provide some guidance on finding the right deployment model for your business. Hope you can join us.

Mark

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Four Initiatives to Bridge the Collaboration Adoption Gap

November 2, 2012 at 8:33 am PST

In my previous post, I mentioned that I’d briefly describe four initiatives Cisco promotes to help customers bridge the adoption gap. Most of all, adoption needs to be factored in at all phases of the plan-manage-build collaboration investment lifecycle. The biggest mistake organizations can make is to treat adoption as an afterthought or process that naturally occurs without prompting when a collaboration solution goes live.

Bridging the adoption gap begins with lowering the barriers to customer investment in collaboration-focused IT services by expanding the role of “as-a-Service” collaboration consumption models. Here, cloud computing is the enabling technology, but beyond that, Read More »

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Cisco CIO Summit 2012: Starting with the customer, and ending with IT in mind

We’ve all heard the sayings “put the customer first” and “the customer is always right.”  According to Forrester Research, the days of manufacturing, distribution, and information being the primary ways successful companies dominate their industries are gone, and the new “age of the customer” is here. Newly empowered, informed, and demanding buyers are radically redefining the conversations, strategies, and planning of top IT leaders around the world. This year at the CIO Summit hosted by Cisco, I had the privilege to engage with seventy-eight Chief Information Officers from large enterprises and organizations who shared similar sentiments. 

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Witches, Ghosts and Ghouls…Oh My! Cisco Celebrates Halloween with Legendary Costume Contest

It’s the day after Halloween and people across the country are hanging up their costumes, sorting through their candy and recovering from sugar highs. At Cisco, we’ve once again been reminded of the power of telepresence—especially during the holidays.

In some cultures Halloween is seen as a time where the door between the physical world and the metaphysical is opened, creating a connection between the two. For me, Cisco TelePresence opened up doors to communication I otherwise wouldn’t have experienced.

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Manufacturing Robotics: Automation with Emotion

I enjoy Halloween.  I particularly enjoy passing out candy and treats to the children and being amused by their costumes.  Some are very creative, and cute.   A young girl no older than 3 years was dressed as a duck and instead of saying, “Trick or Treat” she just quacked. It was Hilarious!! So what does my Halloween experience this year have to do with manufacturing.  Well, a young man came to my home dressed in a very elaborate and cleverly designed C-3PO costume.  You know the clever robot in the Star Wars series that translated for R2D2.

I began to think about how robots in manufacturing are evolving and becoming more intuitive and cerebral, but an interesting phenomenon is also starting to evolve in the world of robotics.  They’re becoming more emotional.

Say Hello to Mr. Baxter.  Rethink Robotics has designed a friendly and compassionate robot with ‘common sense’.  Baxter is a worker robot with a touchscreen face that’s as much about communicating its intent as giving humans something more to experience.  It’s safe to work around, courteous and follows instructions very well.  The ideal teenage son. Baxter also cost about $22,000. Less than a 1/3 of some college tuitions.

Can you envision yourself treating your fellow robot much like you treat your trusted Golden Retriever, Fido?  Do you remember Rosie from the Jetsons and B9, the robot from the late 1960′s sitcom, Lost In Space (Boy am I dating myself)?  These robots expressed emotions like love and fear, were treated like family and were trusted to help make critical decisions that effected the safety and well being of their owners.

Baxter is being touted as the catalyst to help restore US and European manufacturing prowess.  Do you think Baxter robots will achieve this objective?  I’m not sure, but I would like to know how President Obama and Mr. Romney plan to tax Mr. Baxter.  I would hate for Baxter to become emotionally upset and stage a strike.

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