Cisco Unveils Business Tablet – Cius


Early this week, Cisco unveiled its first tablet running Google Android operating system  with full video conferencing, email and media access called  The Cius, a 7-inch HD business collaboration device designed with the business user in mind.

Yes, A business collaboration device which is missing in iPad and I’d say in all other tablets to be launched by other vendors sometimes this year.  The device will be part of Cisco’s  Communications package that they sell to business users.

The tablet is a virtual desktop and telecommunication machine, complete with a front facing 720p HD camera and a second, 5-megapixel rear-facing camera. It’s smaller than an iPad, with a 7-inch screen and weighing only 1.15 pounds.

The device is designed to be mobile.  It also comes with 3G capability, along with Wi-Fi, Bluetooth  and Micro-USB support. Cisco claims that the device will go for eight hours “under normal usage.” As a bonus, the battery is detachable.

The other key to this tablet is the suite of Cisco software products that it will run. The list includes Cisco Quad, Show and Share, WebEx, Presence and Cisco TelePresence; it also supports Unified Communications Manager. It looks like these apps will run as modified Android applications.

The Cius has a deep integration with Cisco telecommunication products. The inclusion of two cameras for teleconferencing alone could make it a popular buy with enterprise companies.

Customer trials begin in the third quarter.  However, the device won’t officially launch until early 2011.

As a former networking engineer geek and having them as a client during my Telezoo days in early 2000, I guarantee you all if Cisco creates something… business world takes it seriously.., they are big with great expertise in delivering… networking of course.

Tablet Capabilities:

– 802.11a/b/g/n Wi-Fi, 3G/4G data and Bluetooth 3.0 help employees stay connected on and off-campus

– HD video (720p) with Cisco TelePresence solution interoperability for lifelike video communication with the simplicity of a phone call

– Virtual desktop client enables highly secure access to cloud-based business applications
Android operating system, with access Android marketplace applications
– Collaboration applications including Cisco Quad, Cisco Show and Share, WebEx, Presence, and IM

Tablet Highlights:

– 7” diagonal, high-resolution color screen with contact-based touch targets delivers an elegant, intuitive experience

– HD Soundstation supports Bluetooth and USB peripherals, 10/100/1000 wired connectivity and a handset option

– Detachable and serviceable 8-hour battery for a full day of work

– Highly secure remote connections with Cisco AnyConnect Security

VPN Client
HD audio with wideband support (tablet, HD Soundstation)

Combine the “802.11a/b/g/n Wi-Fi, 3G/4G data and Bluetooth 3.0” with our Google Voice and we have a full phone/sms system for the cost of a data plan per month. It is about time!

In conclusion, To me this is a telepresence solution… its not really marketed to consumers (which is very smart of Cisco)… Plus no consumer will desire to pay the price for these. (probably well over 5k each)

But if you are in a shop that uses Tandberg/Cisco TeleP then this is a game changer….it has everything you need Quad, Webex, integrates with your Border controller, and you can add it to unified communications ie integrated with Active Directory and Microsoft Communicator. So, the main markets that will adopt this in a second are Fed Govt , DOD , intel community when they finally trust adopt wireless/Finance

I wonder about its price tag. Anyone?

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About Elias Shams
I have been a serial entrepreneur in telecom and social media space for past 12 years or so. I hold a M.S. degree in Telecommunication Engineering from the George Washington University and a B.S. degree in Electrical Engineering from the University of Maryland. I’ve lived and worked in many countries and cities including London England, Tehran Iran, Bonn Germany, Paris France, Alicante Spain, Delhi India, and my favorite of all Washington, DC of great US of A. Two of the greatest Washington, DC based companies I worked for and very proud of are Yurie Systems which was sold to Lucent in 1998 for $1.23 B and telezoo.com that I founded in 1999. I am currently the founder and awesomizer @ awesomize.me

8 Responses to Cisco Unveils Business Tablet – Cius

  1. Marc Koller says:

    I have been in the mobile technology arena since the palm pilot gave us hope that a PDA could be a tool to expand learning on a just in time platform. The Cius, like the iPad is another of the devices that can be very useful if the expectations are realistic and it is used in an appropriate way. The cisco sales force is selling this as a better solution for conferencing and mobile connectivity. It will be, if the hype is real, a boon for this marketplace. As a training platform it has lots of potential.

    • Kamran Abdi says:

      I wouldn’t use the phrase “The Cius, like the iPad…” from what I read here and the research I have done, Cisco’s tablet is the only one targeting businesses and it looks like it is going to be a full conferencing solution. The article is well put.

      • Marc Koller says:

        Dont kid yourself,is a consumer product but they know that the holy grail for the iPad is the corporate side. They push the product as a personal item, but know that the execs that buy one will have the IT departments integrate it into the email and other corporate systems. Just the same way the iphone is now becoming as main stream as the blackberry.

  2. jeff says:

    Looks pretty cool. But I wonder how many people would really buy it rather than go with the ipad.

  3. Henry says:

    When Samsung, LG, Sony enter the market, it’s game over for Cisco Cius. The TV manufacturers integrate their devices with their TVs and content. And they know how to design for consumers. Waiting till 2011 in this tech era is a disaster.

  4. Jack312 says:

    Cisco is primary aimed at business what they might do is sell these to businesses as communication tools or bundle them as part of a sale. It’s basically Cisco not wanting put money in Apples pocket. So they will put out there own version to avoid reselling someone else product and dealing with compatibility issues. Maybe they might put out a linksys model you never know with Cisco.

  5. Ramin12 says:

    This is useless..I don’t see the corporate world actually using this thing, not in this form. Has anyone seen what Office Communicator 14 can do? This would be just another thing to carry around with your laptop and mobile phone.

  6. Facebook 2222 says:

    did you know you can integrate Telepresence with office communicator and active directory? By the way you still need a laptop for communicator….. unless you are using office communicator on windows mobile or webmessenger.

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