2017 has seen notable anniversaries of iconic products that revolutionized industries. It’s interesting to consider the relationship between these examples. These products are surviving and thriving in the modern, digital economy.

First iPhone, Sgt Pepper Cover, first Cartier Tank
Beatles album cover fair use https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?curid=142096
  • Ten years ago, Apple’s iPhone completely changed the way we live, work, and play. Along with iTunes and the iPod, it helped transform the way we consume music.
  • The Beatles’ Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band was itself considered revolutionary. Yet, at 50 years old, it is still selling well and reaching both new and old fans through digital media. And vinyl is making a comeback, appealing to people who prefer the experience it offers.
  • Despite the advent of wearable technology, desire for high-end watches continues to be strong. The Cartier Tank was designed in 1917, inspired by the first military tanks. One hundred years later, the Tank is still in production. With new models periodically added to the collection, it remains a favorite timepiece among royalty, politicians, celebrities, and business leaders.

These are great examples of products that anticipate how peoples’ needs evolve and adapt to changing preferences

Cisco has been leading IP-based communication and collaboration for almost 20 years. We continue to focus on creating new collaboration experiences, with Cisco Spark and the Cisco Spark Board. At the same time, our established solutions for corporate telephony and Unified Communications remain in high demand, and we continue to enhance their end-user and admin experiences.

It’s challenging for organizations to continue to maintain and evolve their existing communications investments. You need to keep things running smoothly while plotting a path toward future collaboration requirements. Our latest on-premises infrastructure and endpoint releases allow you to do exactly that.

Collaboration System Release (CSR) 12.0

Cisco Collaboration Systems Releases (CSRs) provide a comprehensive set of infrastructure, applications, and endpoints that have been integrated, designed, and tested to deliver a superior user experience. Generally available in September, the latest release 12.0 features the following highlights:

Enhanced mobile experience: Now you can enable an enhanced method for receiving push notifications on Apple iOS devices with Cisco Jabber 11.9. Plan to upgrade your UC environment by June 2018 to take advantage and to ensure continued operation. Additional benefits for iOS include improved battery performance, faster login, and offline login support. Cisco Jabber 11.9 also supports a broader range of Android mobile devices. It provides presence integration for Office for Mac 2016 and has a host of new emojis to help you get your message across.

Stronger security and compliance: Security continues a top-of mind issue for business leaders. With Release12.0, you can choose the minimum version of Transport Layer Security (TLS) allowed across your key Unified Communications interfaces. This will help keep your PCI compliance assessor happy, ahead of new guidelines that come into effect in June 2018.

Improved IPv6 support: Adopting IPv6 as standard? Running out of IPv4 address space? Release 12.0 can help you save tens of thousands of IPv4 addresses by deploying 7800/8800 Series IP phones using IPv6 addressing.

Updated Cisco Spark Hybrid Services: Connect your UC environment to Cisco Spark meeting and messaging services. New hybrid call routing and consolidated virtual machine requirements reduce complexity and use your resources more efficiently.

Simplified administration: A new, centralized instant messaging and presence (IM&P) architecture, new tools for managing IM&P databases, and a “device last seen” report streamline management operations to help you get the most from your UC assets.

Cisco Spark 55

Updates to Collaboration Endpoints

Meanwhile, we’re continuing to invest in our on-premises registered endpoint portfolio to improve user experiences and simplify maintenance.

Collaboration Endpoint Software 9.1: Now available, the latest software release for our video conferencing endpoints supports the MX, SX, and DX Series as well as the Cisco Spark Room Series (Room 55, Room Kit, and Room Kit Plus).

Enhancements include a new wake-up experience: Endpoints automatically detect when someone enters the room, wake up, say “hello”, and provide guided instructions. This simple update helps make it effortless to start a meeting.

This release also includes a new user experience for our dual-screen systems. Both screens can now receive video streams in Cisco Meeting Server-based meetings.

IP Conference Phone 8832 and 7832: For meeting spaces that need the room coverage of a dedicated audio conference phone, we have two options. The new Cisco IP Conference Phone 8832 is ideal for midsize to large conference rooms with up to 26 people. It has a new ergonomic design and delvers excellent audio performance. For small rooms and huddle spaces for up to six people, we recently introduced the IP Conference Phone 7832. Starting in September 2017, you will be able to register it to Unified Communications Manager.

8800 Series Key Expansion Modules (KEM): Designed for receptionists, administrative staff, and executives, two new expansion modules simplify call management with the touch of a button. The IP Phone 8851/8861 Key Expansion Module and the IP Phone 8865 Key Expansion Module support up to 28 programmable line/feature keys per module. They support more characters per line label to display contact names. Two user modes are available and you can tailor a user’s experience based on preference or familiarity with previous generation KEMs.

Keep Your Communications Fresh

To ensure that you have the best options for your business, we continue to develop compelling user experiences for on-premises, cloud, and hybrid unified communications and collaboration. The easier it is to communicate with employees, partners, and customers, the easier it is to innovate, connect, and compete.

How will your teams communicate and collaborate in the digital workplace? Talk to your account manager or a partner about plans for refreshing your UC investments.


Andy Johnston

Solutions Marketing Manager