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Cisco Joins Forces with Wharton School on Classroom of the Future

Wharton school picI am proud to be part of a company that is making innovations in education on a daily basis. You may have already heard how universities around the world are using Cisco to transform the classroom, and today’s news is further evidence of this.

The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania is working with Cisco to provide collaboration solutions that will bridge faculty and students in Philadelphia and San Francisco to deliver the classroom of the future. As one of the country’s most esteemed colleges, the Wharton School is using Cisco’s collaboration technologies, including Cisco TelePresence, to bridge the classrooms across the United States. In the future, they hope to extend these benefits to Wharton’s classrooms around the globe, including Asia, Europe and South America.

Most of Wharton’s star-studded professors are based in Pennsylvania and frequently travel to the San Francisco satellite campus that caters to Silicon Valley executives aiming for an MBA.  Read More »

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ACE Network: How Cisco Jabber for Windows Helps Me Do More with My Laptop

My laptop PC recently took on a new role: As a tool for centrally managing the different phones that I use in my work. The new Cisco Jabber for Windows client allows me to control the Cisco 9971 desk phone that’s in my Cisco office and the Cisco 7961 phone I have in my home office. But I can also use the Jabber client as a soft phone on my laptop, both answering and dialing calls as if I was at my hardware phone.

This flexibility means that I’m easier to reach and I can use the best phone that’s available to me at any given moment. Even better, I can use the Jabber client for more than just phone calls because it integrates features for instant messaging (IM), presence, audio and web conferencing, and visual voicemail.

I find the client’s IM and presence capabilities especially helpful. These features often allow me to answer those “got a second?” information requests from a customer, partner, or member of my team without needing to make a return call or play phone tag. It also means I don’t have to wait until I’m back in my office or at home to take care of it.

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ACE Network: My Calls are now HD Video with the Cisco Jabber Client

It used to be that a video call meant going to a special room for a high-end video conference or putting up with the small webcam image on a laptop. Today, nearly all of the calls I handle at my desk are video calls because of the mid-range but very portable video meeting experience in the Cisco Jabber client.

ACE 5 - Pradeep_Jabber Video blog jpeg

Cisco Jabber Clients use the same video engine from Cisco Jabber Video for TelePresence (Movi). I use Cisco Jabber on our internal ACE network, where Cisco IT has been testing it as a new product before supporting it in production.

Being able to join a high-definition video call instantly, without having to schedule and wait, is more than just a convenience. It is becoming a necessity to conduct business these days and sometimes it’s the only way you can reach some people.

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What’s New with VXI for 2013?

Desktop Virtualization the Cisco Way

Now that 2013 is officially here –  it must be time for the next wave of innovations for the Cisco VXI Smart Solution. The first of these enhancements is Jabber for virtual environments, which we are announcing today.

In 2012 we saw the 1000th customer deploy VXI to meet their desktop virtualization and VDI needs. You can read Phil Sherburne’s blog for a look back on 2012. Granted, these VXI deployments are not all 30,000 seat environments -- they cover a complete spectrum of implementation scale, from small pilots to large production environments with tens of thousands of seats.

We recognized an interesting trend in 2012. Many IT departments were expanding on their initial deployments by simply adding UCS blades to scale the installed pilot VXI infrastructure – one of the great benefits of having a VDI architecture that scales seamlessly from zero to 5000 virtual desktops in just 30 minutes.

It’s rare for an IT department to roll out an enterprise-wide desktop virtualization deployment from day one. There are technology and operational lessons that are often best learned though a pilot production deployment numbering hundreds, rather than thousands of seats. With Cisco VXI we are assisting IT organizations with the initial pilots through attractive bundles that are targeted at pilot deployments, pre-production pilot service offers and the like.

However, once the pilot is successfully deployed, IT needs to consider how best to expand the deployment on three dimensions:

  1. Efficiently scaling the number of virtual desktops
  2. Supporting additional work profiles and use cases and
  3. Operationalizing the provisioning and administration of large deployments.

The VXI roadmap is well aligned with helping customers expand and scale their desktop virtualization deployments across all three dimensions.

diagram for 2.7 DC blog

Phase 1 of the roadmap has been focused on providing the most scalable, efficient and simplified infrastructure for desktop and application virtualization. Together with partners, including Citrix and VMware, we continue to expand on the capabilities of VXI in this area with greater virtual desktop densities, storage optimization, network and security enhancements -- and the like.

In phase 2 of the roadmap we have been focused on expanding the use case support by enabling greater levels of mobility, broader device support and just as importantly greater support of integrated collaboration and voice/video services in a virtual desktop and application environment.

In the 3rd phase we will focus on helping enterprises and service providers enhance the operational efficiencies of large deployments through private, public and hybrid cloud workspace models.

Today’s “Jabber for virtual environments” announcement is squarely focused on enabling support for a broader set of use cases, by evolving our virtual workspace architecture. This important enhancement is part of a strategy for better enabling collaboration services on any device running a virtual desktop. This capability is enabled by software, called the Virtualization Experience Media Engine (VXME) that will initially run on Cisco’s thin clients followed by Windows thin clients and Windows PCs.

To learn more watch the webcast or take part in the conversation here

Also if you are going to be at Cisco Live in London at the end of the month -  don’t miss out on seeing the VXI technologies in action at the World of Solutions Data Center and Unified Workspace booths.

And finally, be on the look out for additional VXI developments as we progress through the rest of 2013.

 

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ACE Network: Experience the Newly Improved Cisco Jabber Universal Client

One client for all communications: That’s the idea behind the new Cisco Jabber and I’m seeing that benefit in my use of this universal communication client. I start the client when I begin my work and use it throughout the day for voice and video calls, to send instant messages to others on my team, and to join WebEx sessions or Cisco TelePresence meetings. In addition to these features, the client also supports Desktop Sharing and Presence, which lets me know the availability status of my teammates at all times.

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