Sunday, November 29, 2009

* Cisco Unified Communications Release 8.0 announced

At its recent Cisco Collaboration Summit, Cisco announced the release of its Unified Communications 8.0 Product. Why it interests me ? I have been working on Unified Communication platforms of Microsoft & Cisco since last one year. image

I started building a business application on Unified Communications platform which acted as a SIP endpoint. The versions on which i started where Microsoft OCS 2007 R1 & Cisco UC 6.0. My business application could easily integrate with OCS 2007 with help of UC client api sdk but there was no way to support such kind of applications on Cisco UC 6.0 as there was no client sdk available.

With Cisco UC 7.0, Cisco released a set of web services which help in creating such kind of application but still they are not true SIP end points. Hope to see better custom client support as part of 8.0 release.


As part of this release, Cisco has announced improvement in following areas :

  1. Enabling business to business collaboration : Cisco Intercompany Media Engine allows seamless integration of UC infrastructures of two organization. Something similar to this on Microsoft platform is federation but i have not heard of scenario about B2B on MS platform. This will make lot of sense in case of partners, suppliers and sub entities.image
  2. Choice of clients : IP phone, Soft clients and mobile clients. Third party clients like IBM Lotus Sametime and Microsoft Office Communicator also supported. OCS 2007 already supports these types of clients.
  3. Choice of Deployment models : on-premises, hosted & hybrid. OCS too supports these.

The adoption of UC platform is continuously with enterprises because of dollar saving they bring to communication cost. But the value these platforms can deliver by integrating them into Line of Business applications is yet to be realized.

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