Cisco announces new SMB products and services

Cisco Systems Inc. (NASDAQ: CSCO) has announced new products and enhanced services offerings to help small and mid-size businesses (SMBs) communicate, stay secure and connect with one another.

Todd Madgett, director of small and medium enterprise at Cisco Canada, said businesses around the world, and small businesses in particular, are working hard to create efficiencies and drive productivity on a daily basis.

“The words communicate, secure and connect, are terminologies that really resonate well with SMB customers,” Madgett said. “At Cisco, we try to bring enterprise-class collaboration models down to the SMB to offer simplified solutions to make customers more productive.”

Cisco has introduced enhanced services and support for its partner and end-user base so that its Small Business Support Service is now available across the complete Cisco Small Business solution portfolio, Madgett said. The subscription-based offering includes three years of support which also includes next-business day advanced hardware replacement, software updates, call and online chat support and more.

Madgett said the new enhancements were made based on partner survey results from North America, which are conducted by Cisco every six months.

“What’s important to partners and what resonates with them is the need for simplicity, profitability and the ease of use of our portfolio,” he said.

Over the summer, Cisco moved its inside call centre for its Canadian partner organization to Toronto. Previously, the centre used to be in Salt Lake City, Madgett said. With a centre now based in Canada, the company can now provide real-time proactive reach to partners across the country. Having the centre here also enables “better turnaround time for things like quotes and pricing,” he added.

Among its new product offerings include new Cisco Series 300 Managed Switches, which Cisco said can help businesses save up to 74 per cent on power. The switches are also IPv6-enabled to help meet the new Internet protocol standard.

The vendor also announced new cameras including the VC 220 Dome IP Camera, which provides 360 degree movement and the VC 240 Bullet IP Camera, which is optimized for use in outdoor environments. To complement the cameras, Cisco also has its Advanced Video Monitoring system software, which helps businesses monitor and control up to 64 video surveillance cameras. The software can detect motion and sends out alerts if objects move or disappear, Madgett explained.

Cisco also has its SPA 300 Series of phones which include the SPA 301, for one line and SPA 303 for three lines, for entry-level use, Madgett said. The SPA 525G2 is a full-featured, wireless IP phone that’s designed for the executive or management level

Lastly, Cisco also announced a more simplified My Cisco Partner Portal, Madgett said.

“We now have our customizable My Cisco Partner Portal which combines the whole SMB experience into a central location,” Madgett said. “Here, partners can view promotions, take part in the chat community, track service requests, get deals and quotes, view event calendars, etc.”

All of the new products and services are available now, with the exception of the Cisco 300 Series Managed Switches, which only have some availability at the moment.

Follow Maxine Cheung on Twitter: @MaxineCheungCDN.

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Maxine Cheung
Maxine Cheung
Staff Writer, Computer Dealer News

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