back to article Apple muscles in on biz world AGAIN – this time with Cisco pact

Apple has inked a deal with networking giant Cisco, as Cupertino beefs up its efforts to pull in more business customers. Financial details of the agreement were kept secret. But the motivation was clear: to make iOS devices work more smoothly on networks that use Cisco kit. Apple said it planned to integrate its iThings with …

  1. ratfox
    WTF?

    Desk phones?

    What year is it?

    1. Ragarath

      Re: Desk phones?

      2015 where desk phones are still needed obviously not for your business but in a lot of others is still a necessary evil.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Desk phones?

        That assumes you can get decent reception from everywhere in the office. That's often not the case, especially in a modern building constructed using a lot of steel, reinforced concrete and low-e windows.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Desk phones?

          Many of these comments have just backed up what my original post criticising desk phones made: you don't realise the alternatives.

          1) A *proper* mobile phone headset, a comfortable one or a pair of high quality inner-earphones with microphone. I don't mean the supplied junk with the mobile phone

          2) WiFi Handoff means your VOIP calls from your Unified Call Manager, Microsoft Lync or *whatever* mean you get calls through your cellular mobile phone number both through 2G/3G/4G or via WiFi as well as your desk phone via also 2G/3G/4G and/or WiFi. If there is no cell signal there is always WiFi (if deployed properly!)

          What some of you posters really mean is that you haven't ever experienced a proper mobile phone + VOIP + WiFi deployment, which is why you don't realise how amazing it can be.

          Having been in Cisco's various US offices many times I can assure you that most of the account execs are running their desk-phone numbers via their mobile phone using the infamous UCS Cisco App on the iPhone; this routes calls via WiFi where necessary using your desk number.

          I've only seen one other external company do this decently, which I find very sad. Perhaps the costs are still prohibitively high - reality is (as in our office) it really isn't that hard to have this solution work well.

          We have no desk-phones anymore, for which everybody seems very glad :-)

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Desk phones?

      I would actually go along with this comment... in this day and age is there seriously a need for an expensive piece of kit on a desk, with expensive headphone attachments? Small bluetooth headsets, mobile-phone style headphones with integrated microphone and volume control are usually superior to this. Using the functions of the application on the mobile phone or the phone itself are more familiar to the user, as they touch it all day, particularly in the case of smartphones.

      Once this cartel is smashed users can FINALLY enjoy using a reasonably good work mobile phone which handoffs onto the WiFi at their various home VPN and office locations whilst providing the business with reachability of users. I say this as someone who only has a work specific phone and keep my personal life and personal phone private.

      Have you seen Cisco phone kit and accessories? £££/££££ whilst being cheap and nasty looking and not always user friendly; I don't always want a full advanced menu when just attending a conference call. Muting on a mobile phone is easy, on a conference call some desk phones have this function disabled and you have to press a *6 combination - horrible.

      RIP desk phones!

      1. Harry the Bastard

        Re: Desk phones?

        on those awful days when you have to endure 6+ hours of webex, a desk phone with a proper headset is an awful lot more comfy than a mobile, and as our global megacorp is run by bean counters who confused byod with "buy your own phone, pay for company calls yourself and you cannot expense them", i'm buggered if i'm paying for the experience myself

        mine has mute button, can't ever recall using one that didn't, and i have the speed dials set the way i like, much faster than faffing around with a mobile that's had the corporate security policy inflicted on it so that it locks after 30 seconds inactivity

        the only improvement would be ditch the ip telephony and get back to a nice old definity where voice quality starts high and stays that way no matter how many people are on the phone at the same time

      2. A Non e-mouse Silver badge

        Re: Desk phones?

        Muting on a mobile phone is easy, on a conference call some desk phones have this function disabled and you have to press a *6 combination - horrible.

        I wonder if you're confusing mute from your phone and mute in the conference service. Either will work, but generally mute from the handset (which is usually a hard button and definitely exists on all the Cisco phones I've worked with) is often easier.

    3. keep-it-calm-or-more

      Re: Desk phones?

      it's year of the synergy. i don't believe any of this makes any kind of technical sense at all. bosses just want to golf together and the employees are left with "wat?"...

      anyone recalls cisco's plan to take over skype customerbase with callingstations that were priced at several hundred dollars each ? :D

    4. Dr_N Silver badge

      Re: Desk phones?

      Some people seem to forget how dire the audio quality has become on mobile phones.

      Running a conf call from a mobile makes the call sound like amateur hour.

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    But the motivation was clear: to make iOS devices work more smoothly with IOS

    See above

  3. Dan 55 Silver badge
    WTF?

    Seamless experience between iPhone and desk phone

    Ring desk phone from iPhone, desk phone rings.

    In what way do they want it to be more seamless than that?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Seamless experience between iPhone and desk phone

      Outside caller rings desk phone while you are away from your desk, so your iPhone rings instead. That's what they mean.

      1. Dan 55 Silver badge

        Re: Seamless experience between iPhone and desk phone

        Call forwarding? Hardly revolutionary.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Seamless experience between iPhone and desk phone

          Call forwarding isn't revolutionary, but if it knows when you step away from your desk phone so it rings the right one that takes a bit more integration.

          Basically they want the "handoff" functionality they have with OS X / iOS for Cisco IP phones.

          1. Dan 55 Silver badge

            Re: Seamless experience between iPhone and desk phone

            So you might as well set up your iPhone as a SIP client via WiFi onto the corporate net.

      2. Mike Bell

        Re: Seamless experience between iPhone and desk phone

        Outside caller rings desk phone. Desk phone rings the recipient's iPhone. Recipient's iPhone rings his OS X computer (this bit happens already). Lovely! Three rings for the price of one.

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Devil

    Now this is interesting...

    ...because one network that definitely uses a lot of Cisco kit is the internet. So, is this Apple's way of stepping around net neutrality? In Apple's ideal world, it won't be sources that are penalised or uplifted, but devices.

    This ties in very nicely with the imminent new Apple TV and exclusive streaming deals; further more, can we expect Apple iPhones and iPads to gain an eventual, insurmountable advantage over, say, Samsung's similar products, because regardless of how good or fast Samsung devices are (and I use them as an example, not as flame-bait), if data just flows 'better' between Apple devices, guess what products people will buy. And if Apple becomes a content producer, producing content for consumption primarily on Apple devices (new Apple TV again), then that's Net Neutrality well and truly done for.

    I'd thought the villains that would break net neutrality would be the Telcos. But Apple may well have outstepped them entirely, again. And even smarter: unlike the hated Telcos, Apple isn't throttling anything, but just providing a faster lane for data flowing between their own devices, so Apple will probably come out of all of this smelling of roses.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Now this is interesting...

      Top class bonkers paranoid ravings. I doff my tinfoil titfer in respect

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Alien

        Re: Now this is interesting... Doffer...

        And when you doffed your hat and your head was briefly uncovered, they uploaded a virus to your brain.

    2. theblackhand

      Re: Now this is interesting...

      I'm not sure there is any Net Neutrality argument where the manufacturer of network equipment is the cause of the throttling - I believe the two arguments are either it is done via ISP policy (and the network equipment configuration that results from that policy) or bandwidth limitations on interconnects (either via policy based on peering agreements or financiallimitations of not paying for more ports/lines/bandwidth).

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Jabber ....

    Mmmmmmm... lovely.

    Good luck with that, Apple.

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Facepalm

    Productivity...

    "and help employees become even more productive using the devices they already love."

    Omg, stuff people with more iThings, because they will be more ultrasuperubber productive!

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