Cisco Aims For Corporate Video

Cisco plans to bring the camera into the
boardroom with Cisco Digital Media System, a collection of hardware and software for companies to broadcast business-quality audio and
video to customers, clients and employees.

The $130,000 system includes a digital encoder, media manager and
portal with guide, play lists and search.

Windows Media Player,
RealPlayer and Flash will be supported first, with QuickTime and
MPEG4 compatibility added later this year, according to the company.

The system can broadcast live or deliver on-demand content via
Internet connections either wired or wireless.

“While the digital media explosion has taken off in the consumer
world, businesses are just beginning to realize the potential of
video,” Marthin De Beer, vice president of Cisco’s Emerging Markets
Technology Group, said in a statement.

This is the second project announced by the group looking to expand
Cisco’s focus beyond traditional networking. In March, Cisco paid $51
million for video surveillance company SyPixx.

Last month, Cisco bought privately held video-on-demand company Arroyo Video Solutions.

In 2005, Cisco entered the video market with the $6.9 billion purchase of set-top maker Scientific-Atlanta.

Cisco sees business-class video as a multi-billion dollar
opportunity, Tom Wyatt, general manager of digital media for the
company, told internetnews.com.

Cisco’s entry provides muscle to a market populated by privately held
companies, such as Sonic Foundation and Reflect Systems, Ira
Weinstein of Wainhouse Research said.

While sales have fallen beneath the radar, business-class video is
expected to see 30 percent growth, said Weinstein.

Cisco, already a leader in networking, brings name recognition to the
market, making it easier to convince companies to purchase $100,000
systems, according to the analyst.

“Over time this should validate the space,” Weinstein said.

Since video is a resource hog, company networks could be brought to
their knees without the experience Cisco could bring, he said.

Wyatt said Cisco’s third video announcement will be made in the next few
months.

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