Smile. You're on camera. With your work colleagues. Harrowing, right, in this work-from-home, don't-care-about-my-hair environment today?

But Cisco is all about enterprise collaboration through video and today released a series of video systems that offer HD quality. It wants enterprises to make video the de facto meeting-room collaboration tool.

The systems are called Cisco TelePresence MX200, MX700 and MX800, the first geared toward smaller conference rooms and the latter two for medium- to large-sized ones. They come with technologies associated with the video platforms from Cisco.

'Controlled Crowdsourcing'

"Collaboration, video communications and cloud are three powerful technologies to help grow a mid-market enterprise," analyst Steve Hilton, managing director of MachNation, told CMSWire. "Innovation is spurred by stakeholders in a firm using their collective brainpower -- think of it as 'controlled crowdsourcing.' Innovation drives new revenues and new solutions for enterprises."

Other big fishes are deploying video technologies. Less than a year ago, Adobe revealed Adobe Anywhere for video, a collaborative video editor in the cloud. 

Zeus Kerravala, of ZK Research, said Cisco addresses with the new technology the challenge companies face in making video a ubiquitous resource.

"Legacy systems are typically difficult to use, can be challenging to deploy and are made primarily for scheduled meetings," he said. "The new Cisco portfolio is a big step in making video collaboration a resource that organizations can give to everyone enabling higher quality scheduled meetings as well as using video for more 'ad hoc' conversations. Lastly, the new Cisco products are designed to allow even remote workers to have that high quality video experience, not just in office workers."

Wow Factor?

So what makes this video technology different from other enterprise collaboration platforms like it?

Future-proofing the technology, said Jim de Poortere of Viju, a Cisco partner. Cisco's integrated systems come equipped with premium HD resolution and support video-coding H.265.

"H.265 is in place with the larger scaled solutions," de Poortere said. "It has a proper camera tracking solution that make the collaboration experience far better in most larger multi-purpose conference/training rooms."

Learning Opportunities

Hilton said it's a game-changer because the technology (particularly Cisco's SX10, which builds upon flat panel displays, and MX200) has small profiles and easy set-up. They are "great entry products for mid-market enterprises that are just starting to dabble with video."

Kerravala cited Cisco's news as its biggest video product release.

"Cisco's new portfolio can address video on all devices including mobile, desk, room-based and immersive systems," he said, adding he's impressed with the speed at which the new solutions can be deployed.

"Typically," he continued, "video solutions can take days to be deployed but these new solutions are designed to be deployed in minutes. From what I understand, these products can be out of the box and in use in under 10 minutes. I'm not sure there's another solution even close to this." 

Cisco also announced today its enhanced Cisco Hosted Collaboration Solution. It said the video platforms will be available this spring.

As for pricing, the MX200 starts at $17,900. The MX700 and MX800 start at $49,900.

Title image from Cisco.