Cisco Reduces Cost and Complexity of IP Telephony Systems

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Cisco has announced a series of advancements that can give midsize businesses access to “enterprise grade” IP phone systems with integrated collaboration capabilities without taxing already constrained IT and financial resources.

Cisco has introduced innovations to the Cisco Business Edition3000and the Cisco Business Edition 6000 (formerly known as the Cisco Unified Communications Manager Business Edition 3000 and 6000 respectively). Through these innovations, midsize customers can now access collaboration offerings — ranging from rich video to instant messaging (IM) to presence— at price points the company says will be attractive to the cost-sensitive market.

Additionally, Cisco says these solutions are simple to use, configure and support. The Cisco Business Edition family, together with Cisco WebEx and Cisco TelePresence for small and medium-sized businesses announced last week, provide a complete portfolio of capabilities for mid-size organizations.

The vendor notes that most mid-size organizations operate aging public branch exchange (PBX) systems and old telephony applications — even though these systems scale poorly, are increasingly expensive to maintain, and fail to meet today’s business and mobility needs. While IP telephony systems offer distinct performance and efficiency benefits, many have held on to the old technology thinking that IP-based systems are beyond their budget and IT skill level.

With this announcement, Cisco says it is debunking the myth that IP telephony is out of the price range of mid-sized businesses by making available systems for as little as $100 per user for a 100-person organisation while also including functionality that allows smaller shops to harness the power of business-changing unified communications solutions.