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Cisco Bridges Gap With Microsoft in Collaboration

August 15, 2016 | Telepresence Options


Story and images by Jeffrey Burt / eWeek

The Cisco Meeting Server makes it easier for Microsoft's Skype for Business to interoperate with platforms from Cisco, Polycom, Avaya and others.

Cisco Systems and Microsoft have for a while been the dominant players in the competitive and rapidly evolving enterprise collaboration space. Now, Cisco officials are offering new technology that will make it easier for Microsoft's Skype for Business to interoperate with other platforms.

The giant networking vendor on Aug. 15 unveiled the Cisco Meeting Server, a product that enables Skype for Business users to connect with others who are using systems from other vendors--not only Cisco, but also those like Polycom and Avaya--mobile clients or WebRTC-enabled browsers, all by simply clicking a link.

Video is becoming an increasingly important part of an enterprise's unified communications (UC) strategy, according to Snorre Kjesbu, vice president and general manager of Cisco's Collaboration Group. There has been a 97 percent increase in the number of enterprise users of video over the past two years, and 85 percent of large meeting rooms now have video conferencing capabilities, Kjesbu told eWEEK.

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