50 million Cisco IP phones, and Jabber Instant Messaging (IM) for everyone

In this post PC era, Cisco is taking another important step in advancing the collaborative workspace and making collaboration even more pervasive for customers around the world – regardless of device, application or operating system. Today we’re announcing that we are making presence and instant messaging (IM) capabilities and Cisco Jabber clients available to our Cisco Unified Communications Manager (CUCM) customers globally at no additional cost. Cisco believes that together presence, IM, voice and video call control provide the foundation for real-time communications.

For customers, with this development, Cisco is now providing a way to simply and cost effectively make presence and IM available to all users across a plethora of devices — including Windows, Mac, iPad, Cisco Cius, iPhone, Blackberry, and Android (later in 2012) — while also ensuring they’re deploying a unified communications client  that is BYOD-ready.  And let me emphasize, this isn’t just for those customers who happen to have a Cisco IP phone.  It’s for every employee in an organization.

For partners, this helps simplify and accelerate the deployment of presence, IM and mobile collaboration as part of a holistic, best-in-class, collaboration solution. Hence, presence and IM can easily become ubiquitous in the enterprise!

We feel presence and IM are the starting points of collaboration, not the final destination.

Consequently, once licensed for additional workloads, customers can use Jabber to move beyond IM to more advanced collaboration capabilities that can transform their business – such as enabling employees to easily engage in a TelePresence meeting from their mobile devices.

This development with Jabber increases collaboration choices for customers and expands upon previous Jabber announcements.  And, as Cisco innovates on the software side, we’re also continuing to ensure customers have access to market leading IP telephony solutions.  To that point, Cisco has just reached a milestone in shipping our 50 millionth – yes 50 millionth — IP phone. This 50 millionth phone is up from 30 million just a couple of years ago. What does this growth represent? Well, over the last 18 months our endpoints shipments have grown 40% for IP phones and we’ve seen triple digit growth for soft phones. It’s not surprising to see this type of momentum. Customers use desktop phones because they deliver a great experience in the office, and they’re adding additional soft client capabilities to take that office experience into mobile environments, using devices like smart phones and tablets.

Cisco is committed to extending the reach of unified communications and collaboration, based on standards and for the benefits of everyone in the enterprise. IP phones, converged voice and video call control, ubiquitous presence and instant messaging are just a few examples of the array of offerings that only Cisco can provide to its customers.

I’d love to hear from you if these new capabilities will make a difference in helping your organizations be more productive. Let’s engage in this conversation.

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  1. great idea for service customers and branding,

  2. Lets make all those 50m Cisco IP Phones and hundreds of millions of non-cisco phones controlled by Jabber. Now that Jabber can work with any phones on any PABX with CUCM extend and connect, it is a great value proposition for customers. Here comes the True LINKING via Jabber.

  3. Wow, interesting stuff here!

  4. This is the best thing ever! Can’t wait! Thank you:D

  5. The site offers a fresh look and feel on the issue. Thank you for this!

  6. I don’t understand. That concerns only Jabber IM or also Cisco Jabber (Internet call, voicemail, directory, intégreted desk phone) ?

    • Hi Louis, thanks for the question. This announcement does concern getting Cisco Unified Presence software at no additional cost for current CUCM customers. It does apply to only IM and Presence functionality. Let me know if that clears things up or if you have any additional questions.

      Nadee Gunasena

  7. Wow!. This is huge. I think my AIM days are over. I plan on converting to Jabber now.

  8. Hi!

    Does it means that if I have collaborators worldwide trying to reach me through Skype that I can direct them to download this free software and connect to my Cisco Infrastructure at no cost? Or do I have to pay licenses for them?

    • Hi Pierre,

      Thanks for your question. The Jabber for Everyone offer is for an organization’s employees. The presence and IM server and Jabber IM client are available at no extra license charge for all employees of organizations that have even a small group using Unified Communications Manager. However, this does not apply to third parties outside of your organization that are not using the CUCM infrastructure.

      I hope this clears some things up. Please let me know if you have any additional questions.

      Nadee Gunasena

  9. Hi we have a Presence server, but a temporary licence that is not active anymore, we also have CUWL standard. How can I active the Presence?

    • Hi Josiane, thanks for the comment. Your Cisco account manager and local Cisco partner will be able to get you the specific licenses you need to receive the full IM and presence functionality. Let me know if you need any help getting in touch with the right people. Thanks!

      • Hi Nadee,

        Thanks for you answer, I communicate with them they will see what they can do.


  10. Hey this is really great news! Jabber is pretty amazing,coupled with CISCO Iphone, now that is really smart. What a neat idea to begin with, way to go guys!!!

  11. This is a great idea. I believe the “Cisco IP phones and Jabber Instant Messaging (IM) for everyone” will be successful. You may have other solutions to bring convenient and useful for your company using the free submission to Google. You try. Thanks cisco!

  12. Thanks for post. CISCO is the best…

  13. Cisco is truly making presence work. The importance of presence being available across various desktop and mobile device is key to giving users choice and yet being effective with communication. Thanks Cisco!

  14. Free Jabber tops the Fremium offers and is a great foundational block for collab.

    Easy Jabber integration for application providers will give clients the best of both worlds- meaning the client’s critical app and the competitive advantage of embedded collaboration.

    Exciting announcement!

  15. Can I clarify – we would still need cuwl pro licencing for voice on Jabber mobile devices – correct?

    • Hi Jerry, thanks for the question. Since voice on Jabber Mobile Devices requires call control and client licensing, A customers could get this with CUWL or by purchasing the call control and client licensing separately. Let me know if you need any additional detail.

  16. It’s a great news about Jabber. But where or when can be downloaded? And how to receive a license?

    • Hi Petr – thanks for your question. The offer will be available in June and orderable in May. For more information, I would reach out to your local Cisco account team.

  17. This has the potential to increase our workeffenciency, with no extra cost and at the same mature the users for further collaboration development.
    Thank you!

  18. this is great. … Cisco is always leading UC world

  19. Will employees that have this IM client be able to use the one-to-one video conferences without a webbed license? Thanks

    • Hi Seth. No, voice and video capabilities will require separate licensing.

      • The ‘free jabber for all’ provides IM and presence. To confirm, if Jabber clients want to be able to dial a video call they have to have a backend user license off the CUCM or TMS/VCS. Right?

  20. Congrats Joe, Tom, Steve, Barry and all those who have been working on this for along year… this is exciting to see.

  21. This is great news. Whoever owns presence will end up owning the entire Unified Communications / Collaboration architecture for any organization. This is certainly a shot across the bow of competitors.

    As existing CUPC customers, we’re excited about the Jabber roadmap and have the support of management regarding which Enterprise IM solution to pursue (though it was quite a fight between internal departments representing Cisco’s solution and a rather large competitor’s solution).

    Keep a focus on presence and the Enterprise IM clients. There are many ways to enhance the client including adding management for Single Number Reach, guides for integrating Cisco Unified Presence with other XMPP enabled applications such as IBM’s Maximo software and PeopleSoft’s software. These types of integration solutions will only add value to Cisco solution.

  22. Huge leap for unified communications and collaboration. Thank you.

  23. Lets push for 50M Jabber downloads! No reason this great partner org cannot make it happen.

  24. But don’t you still have to buy the presence server?

    • Herman – thanks for the question. For current Unified Communications Manager customers, with this announcement Cisco Unified Presence server software is available at no additional license.cost

  25. Will this work the other way around. For Jabber users – CUCM account will be available? Will this allow Phone+Video+ telepresence integration for all Jabber users in Corporation?

    That would be huge – and would help to decide what vendor to standardize on

    • Pawel – thanks for the comment. Phone + video+TelePresence is available today, however, you do not get Cisco Unified Communications Manager voice and video call control and Jabber voice and video capabilities for all users by purchasing Cisco Unified Presence and Jabber IM clients for a limited group of employees. Cisco Unified Workspace licensing is probably a good offer for what you describe. Let us know if you have additional questions.

  26. Thanks Barry , Mobile UC just took a big step forward!

  27. Barry – this is FANTASTIC. Jabber is a fantastic brand and it is thrilling to start planning for discussions with my customers around this news. For years we’ve been fighting the “but the competition is free” battle and although the competitive products are absolutely NOT free, being forced to go through the discussion causes confusion and slows down sales and adoption.

    Unlocking Jabber from licensing allows us to focus on VALUE vs Cost. We can be more creative with the capabilities of Jabber to drive true business transformation with our customers.

    THANK YOU for equipping all Cisco Partners with as you stated it best – “a platform for future profit”.

  28. Does this mean that Cisco are giving all CUCM customers FREE software, licenses and hardware for IM and Presence functionality?
    It sounds like thats what is being said but the words are vague.

    • Doug, thanks for the comment. To clarify, Jabber IM client applications and Cisco® Unified Presence (on-premises) licenses will be available to Unified Communications Manager customers at no additional license cost. Hardware is not included in the offer.

    • This is an Excellent News.
      Meanwhile I was trying to setup Jabber on my iPad and came to know that CUCM program is not yet opened for India.

      Can we have this opened to the employees so that we can leverage the potential.