Cisco has announced a range of products designed to improve communications and the use of social networking in enterprises.
The company highlighted a number of areas in which it is making improvements, including new IP phones and a Web 2.0 collaboration platform.
"Collaboration is a mega trend. Companies are more global, and their workers are more mobile, and those in offices are requesting access to the sort of applications that they use at home," said Tim Stone, head of collaboration solutions at Cisco.
Stone explained that mobile workers are presented with a wealth of documents to handle, claiming that Cisco can help to manage this information and allow workers to use it in a collaborative manner, for example by applying real-time messaging to the content.
Cisco's new 8900 and 9900 series of handsets meet low energy standards, and offer wireless connectivity, high-quality video and links to the firm's WebEx conferencing platform.
The firm also announced an enterprise collaboration platform that brings Web 2.0 tools to enterprises, allowing users to share wikis, blogs and other information. Chat tools based on Cisco's acquisition of Jabber provide access to a range of instant messaging applications, including Google Talk and products from IBM and Microsoft.
Cisco Show and Share, meanwhile, will let firms easily share videos and other quickly created content. Stone said that Cisco uses it in-house for company presentations, adding that such tools will soon become the norm in enterprises by replacing internal company email and HR notice boards, for example.
Cisco has also moved into the hosted email market with out-of-the-box support for Outlook on smartphones and browser-based clients. Initially launching in the US and Canada, the application features security capabilities acquired through Cisco's recent purchase of Ironport.
"Businesses require a new environment for people to collaborate within or outside the company," said Stone. "These are the kinds of tools that users want, and we have made them suitable for the enterprise."
A new version of Session Management Edition will let firms build up a SIP network over their legacy telephony systems, which Stone said could act as a bridge as companies move over to newer networks.
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