VOICECON: Cisco TelePresence Goes Downmarket

Cisco Systems Inc. announced a slew of TelePresence products and applications at VoiceCon this week, but the one that’s getting the headlines is a “low-end” system. At a reported $89,000, it’s not exactly slumming it, but in comparison to Cisco’s flagship TelePresence 3000 at more than three times that, it’s considered a bargain.

The first in the new Cisco TelePresence System 1300-65 is the first in a series of new systems that are designed to be used with existing multipurpose conference rooms and tables to provide more flexible deployment options for business that just can’t justify dedicating space to full-blown system or for branch offices of a company using the larger system at headquarters.

Unlike the Cisco TelePresence System 3000 which has an integrated table, the Cisco TelePresence System 1300 Series uses a regular conference room table that seats six people in front of Cisco TelePresence system. The table can be used for regular meetings when not in a Cisco TelePresence session.

The 1300-65 is designed for up to six people in a shared-use meeting room and uses one 65-inch plasma screen and three cameras. It looks similar to a Cisco TelePresence 1000, but it sits flush against the wall. Participants in a Cisco TelePresence System 1300 Series endpoint room see the active speaker segment of the call just as a participant in a Cisco TelePresence System 1000 meeting. Voice-activated switching within the call determines the active speaker segment.

Because the Cisco TelePresence System 1300 Series is based on a single-screen design, it can be easily used for intimate meetings such as interviews or one-on-one meetings as well.

Cisco TelePresence System 1300 Series endpoints are built on the same technology as all Cisco TelePresence endpoints. The system uses the same codec and camera cluster, and features the same data collaboration, one-button-to-push, impromptu calling and multipoint capabilities.

Cisco TelePresence System endpoints can be used for audio-only conferencing as well as TelePresence meetings. The endpoint systems support audio conferencing so no extra speaker phone is needed in the conference room. The Cisco IP Phone works with the system microphones and speakers to provide a complete solution.

Still concerned about the price tag? Cisco Capital is offering special financial to allow customers to acquire Cisco TelePresence with no payments and no interest up to 120 days, during solution deployment in the United States and Canada.

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