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Cisco Launches New Small-Business Products

Cisco Launches New Small-Business Products
By Barry Levine

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New small-business products from Cisco Systems include switches for creating a small-business network, new IP phones, and video-monitoring equipment and software. Cisco's Small Business 300 Series Managed Switches are optimized for energy efficiency. The new SPA 300 Series of IP phones from Cisco and new video systems are versatile.
 



Cisco Systems is launching new products and services for small businesses. The offerings from the San Jose, Calif.-based company include switches for creating a small-business network, new IP phones, and video-monitoring equipment and software.

In all, eight new products or technologies are being launched, with the Small Business 300 Series Managed Switches being one of the centerpieces. The switches offer network traffic control with such features as quality of service, Layer 3 static routing, and support for IPv6. Browser-based tools are used for setup and management, and the company said the switches are optimized for energy efficiency.

Video, IP Phones

Also being released are the new SPA 300 Series of IP phones, entry-level devices that can be connected directly to an Internet telephone service provider, an IP PBX system, or an IP Centrex system. HD voice, or wide-band audio, is available on all of the phones, and the devices are supported with the Cisco Unified Communications 500 Series and SPA9000 Voice System.

The SPA 525G2 IP Phone is a full-featured, wireless IP device and features Mobile Link. Mobile Link allows calls and contact lists to be transferred back and forth with a mobile phone. The 525G2 is Bluetooth-enabled and has a USB port for charging a mobile phone.

A new desktop administration tool, Office Manager, allows a small-business administrator or an IT person to manage the Cisco Smart Business Communications System.

On the video-monitoring front, the company is offering three new products. The Advanced Video Monitoring System software provides monitoring and control, with analytics, for surveillance departments with up to 64 cameras. The system supports such features as motion detection, alerts if items change, and integration of video cameras with point-of-sale equipment.

The new VC 220 Dome IP Video Camera is designed for both bright and low lighting conditions, and the VC 240 Bullet IP Video Camera is weatherproofed for outdoor installation.

'Three Buckets'

Accompanying the new products is an expansion of the company's Small Business Support Service, which is now available for the new products. The support includes next-business-day hardware replacement, software updates, access to the Cisco Support Center and community, and online chat support.

The new products are the latest in Cisco's efforts to market to the small and midsize business community. David Tucker, vice president and general manager of the Cisco Small Business Technology Group, recently told news media that his company's small-business strategy is geared to "three buckets -- connect, secure and communicate." The first includes switching, routing and wireless; the second covers network security and surveillance; and "communicate" encompasses collaboration technologies.

In June, the company launched its Small Business NSS 300 Series Smart Storage, desktop network-storage solutions with integrated business apps. The products, designed specifically for companies with less than 100 employees, come in two-bay, four-bay and six-bay high-performance storage units, with up to 12 terabytes of capacity.
 

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