cisco_logo_2010.JPGMaybe it’s a rule that in order to market a tablet device, the name must be unimaginative or elusive. First it was the Apple iPad, then it was the Sony Dash and the Dell Streak. Now, meet the Cisco Cius.

Cius Now

Cisco recently unveiled the Cius, a business-oriented mobile tablet device running the Android operating system. Capable of HD-quality video it was demoed at the Cisco Live conference in Las Vegas at the end of June.

The Cius (pronounced “see us”), though a wee bit smaller than Apple's iPad, was designed as a collaboration device for business users interested in wireless virtual desktop integration and will be interoperable with Cisco's telepresence system.

PC World called its cloud apps, docking station and dual cameras:

one forward-facing, with integrated HD at 720p that films at 30 fps (frames per second) with zoom functions; and one high resolution, 5MP rear-facing camera for 640x480 video and still image captures

among the Five Reasons to Consider the Cius for Your Business.

cisco cius.jpg
Fig. 1 The Cisco Cius

Dave Bailey of drew attention to some qualities that may affect companies buying decisions, including the lack of client apps and server integration. As well, he points out that the Cius runs Android OS version 2.2, which has "only has basic enterprise support".

Certainly, adding one more tablet device into the mix (with several more on the way) will make things complicated for technology departments within the enterprise. For those already using Cisco Telepresence and its unified communications software, Cius might make the most sense.

Cius Later

Slated for official release in the first quarter of 2011, Cisco said it will retail for less than US$ 1,000, though it failed to name a specific price. Below are the Cius specs. For more details, consult the official data sheet.

Applications Capabilities:

  • 802.11a/b/g/n Wi-Fi, 3G/4G data and Bluetooth 3.0
  • HD video (720p) with Cisco TelePresence solution interoperability
  • Virtual desktop client enables highly secure access to cloud-based business applications
  • Android operating system, with access Android marketplace applications
  • Collaboration applications including Cisco Quad, Cisco Show and Share, WebEx, Presence, and IM

Tablet Highlights:

  • 7” diagonal, high-resolution color screen with contact-based touch targets
  • HD Soundstation supports Bluetooth and USB peripherals, 10/100/1000 wired connectivity and a handset option
  • Detachable and serviceable 8-hour battery for a full day of work
  • Highly secure remote connections with Cisco AnyConnect Security VPN Client
  • HD audio with wideband support (tablet, HD Soundstation)