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Deciding Upon a Collaboration Solution: Do Open Standards Still Matter?

While I was participating in a web conference from my home office, I started thinking about how much and how fast things have changed in the last decade around communications and how we use collaboration tools in the office, at home and on the road and most importantly the number of devices available to me so I CAN collaborate over distance.

One thing that stays constant in this industry is change, especially when it comes to devices. Let’s take a walk down memory lane and see if you can remember any of these once “have to have” mobile devices. The Nokia 9000, The Motorola “Flip phone” and The “Razor”, Palm Pilot, dare I say the Blackberry and of course at the start of 2007 the IPhone came on to the market — and we all know how that is playing out — this being a rarity. More recently, Samsung is challenging Apple with the Galaxy and DROID OS is becoming more prevalent than IOS. Last I checked, there was an estimated 1.3 million Read More »

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Cisco Recognized in Leadership Position in the Gartner Magic Quadrant for Corporate Telephony

Gartner recently released their 2012 Magic Quadrant for Corporate Telephony, and I am incredibly pleased to share that Cisco was placed in the leader’s quadrant.  These results come just after Cisco was recognized as a leader in Gartner’s 2012 Magic Quadrant for Unified Communications.  We believe that, together, these reports signal the momentum that Cisco is experiencing as a leader in Collaboration.

And yes, the momentum has been strong! This past April, Cisco achieved a new milestone by shipping more than 50 million IP phones. We’ve also gained significant traction with Cisco Jabber, which enables instant messaging, conferencing, voice and telepresence video on multiple devices, increasing 55% in license volume year over year.

Our history of success has been validated many times before, not only by sales growth and market share gains, but also acknowledged by technology analysts as an industry leading vendor in this space for more than ten years. Most of you have followed this validation and we believe this year’s Magic Quadrant is just another example.

At Cisco, we understand that our customers don’t make decisions on data, voice or video alone. Instead, they are looking for integrated solutions that deliver the rich media capabilities their users demand, and at the same time, provide the agility, resiliency and high quality experiences the business demands.

According to Gartner analysts Jay Lassman, Geoff Johnson, and Steve Blood in their Corporate Telephony report, “We evaluated vendors for their understanding of how customer needs are changing (both for users and the IT group responsible for managing telephony). It was especially important to see how vendors proposed to complement, or compete with, UC collaboration solutions.” Read More »

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Cisco IP Phone Certificates and Secure Communications

Securing Cisco IP phone communications is important that helps organizations protect trade secrets and facilitate business and compliance requirements. Cisco IP phones support secure communication for both control and data channels. The security that is incorporated into Cisco IP phones includes the encryption and authentication of signaling communications between the Cisco IP phones and the Cisco Unified Communications Manager. Moreover, Cisco Unified Communications Manager supports encryption, authentication, and anti-replay protection of the voice packets that are exchanged between Cisco IP phones.

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Cisco Unified Communications 9.0 – Bridging Systems to Connect Collaboration Experiences

Interoperability. This is a broadly used term in the industry, and at Cisco, we often talk about it in the technical context of the IT stack. However, let’s take a step back and focus on what we want to achieve through interoperability—connecting the right collaboration experiences to the right devices and users.

With Cisco Unified Communications (UC) 9.0 we deliver a series of enhancements that bridge systems, resulting in increased interoperability to enable these critical collaboration experiences.

Many of you are familiar with email-style calling, aka URI (Uniform Resource Identifier) dialing, available if you use our current Cisco TelePresence endpoints. With Cisco UC 9.0, you can now use URI dialing beyond video endpoints. Choose whatever you prefer—an email address or phone number—to Read More »

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How Safe is Your Phone System?

When considering security, make sure you’re protecting the data on your phones, too

In July 2011, the world saw just how vulnerable voicemail systems can be when a phone hacking scandal took down the News of the World newspaper and created a huge public backlash against News Corp. and its CEO Rupert Murdoch. Reporters were illegally intercepting voicemail messages left for the British Royal Family, celebrities, British soldiers, and others in their quest to scoop stories. Public figures’ voicemail messages aren’t likely to reveal product secrets, credit card numbers, or confidential business strategies, but your employees’ voicemails can. Voicemail systems can be configured insecurely and easily hacked—if you don’t take the right precautions.

Whether you have an analog or IP-based phone system, your company’s private voicemails are vulnerable. Most voicemail systems require only a simple four-digit personal identification number (PIN) to protect a user’s voicemail, and hackers have a few different methods for figuring out those numbers and gaining access to voice mailboxes, including caller-ID spoofing, and social engineering.

The good news is that deleted voicemail messages can’t be hacked. Therefore, the easiest and most effective step you can take in securing your voicemail system is encouraging your employees to delete sensitive messages as soon as they’ve listened to them.

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