Cisco has unveiled new purpose-built, multifunctional devices that deliver modernised collaboration experiences to a hybrid workforce.

The company launched the Cisco Board Pro G2, an AI-fueled and touch-enabled collaboration device and Cisco Desk Phone 9800 Series.

While research finds that employees are increasingly open to coming to the office, over 50% of employers and employees do not think the office is equipped with the technology needed to power meaningful collaboration at scale. The Cisco Board Pro G2 and Cisco Desk Phone 9800 series aim to support organisations as they transition into permanent hybrid models and reconfigure workspaces to enable collaboration.

“Cisco is expanding our portfolio of collaboration devices to deliver modern experiences to every corner of the office — from individual workspaces, to meeting rooms of all sizes and configurations,” says Jeetu Patel, executive vice-president and GM of Cisco Security and Collaboration. “With AI built in from the ground up, our voice and video devices are changing what’s possible for hybrid workers, delivering tangible outcomes that matter.”

Cisco Board Pro G2

In the era of hybrid work, people expect workspaces to be equipped with everything needed for rich and engaging collaboration experiences. The new Cisco Board Pro G2 harnesses the collective power of team collaboration with its multifunctional, AI-powered room device designed for a range of small and medium-sized workspaces, including huddle spaces, meeting rooms, classrooms and more.

The all-in-one, touch-enabled meeting and collaboration board provides equitable experiences for everyone joining a meeting — whether they’re sitting around the table in a long meeting room, using the device for ideation or presentations or joining remotely.

The Cisco Board Pro G2 also provides:

* Inclusive and expanded views: The Board Pro G2 is the only collaboration board that features an intelligent 96-megapixel dual-lens camera system. Remote participants get better views of people in the room whether they are working close-up to the board or further away. A new AI virtual zoom capability uses advanced image processing to extend camera reach in longer rooms without compromising video quality. Additionally, new multi-stream layouts in Webex Meetings allow people to see an overview of the entire room plus a close-up of the active speaker at the same time.

* Advanced, AI-powered capabilities: In addition to providing optimised camera views and enhanced audio, an Nvidia chipset and computing engine enable the device with clearer video quality, improved performance and better capacity to run web applications.

* Flexible collaboration: Customers have the flexibility to use this device for a range of collaborative workflows, with the ability to use the device for seamless video conferencing, interactive annotation and digital whiteboarding — including Microsoft Teams Rooms certification for Microsoft, Miro, Mural and Webex visual collaboration applications.

* Simplified deployment and scalability: Unlike other solutions limited to be used as companion devices to video conferencing systems while lacking peripheral connectivity and requiring camera extensions, the Board Pro G2 features an all-in-one design that allows IT and facilities teams to standardize deployments and scale faster. Powered by the RoomOS secure operating system, it natively supports Cisco Rooms and Microsoft Teams Rooms on the same device to provide organizations with the flexibility to select their platform experience.

Cisco Desk Phone 9800 Series

To accommodate the flexible workstyles and schedules of today’s hybrid and transient workforce, offices have evolved from traditional layouts in which employees are assigned cubicle desks to open floorplans with shared desk spaces. The Cisco Desk Phone 9800 Series was designed with this modernised office landscape in mind, with a goal to deliver seamless, personalised collaboration experiences that have the flexibility to run on-prem or on a cloud calling platform.

In addition to bringing enterprise calling features such as premium audio and AI-powered noise removal to every desk, the 9800 series provides:

* Personalised productivity at any desk: With the ability to reserve desks in advance and use wayfinding to locate them, the 9800 series delivers an end-to-end personalised experience. Employees can reserve a desk in Cisco Spaces or scan a QR code to check-in, view contacts and call history and connect to their calendar to seamlessly join any meeting at the touch of a button. The phones are also equipped with a quick-access action button that can be customised for evolving organization needs spanning IT support, emergency calls and more.

* Enterprise-grade security: Customers benefit from secure log-in protections as well as end-to-end encryption for meetings and calls with the help of Trusted Platform Module 2.0 hardware for secure encryption, an industry first for enterprise phones.

* Simplified and seamless user experiences: With Cisco’s newly released PhoneOS software, customers can seamlessly transition between desks and RoomOS-powered meeting spaces without compromising the quality of their experience.

* Simplified manageability: The 9800 series reduces deployment and manageability complexities by providing IT admins and facilities with a single device for desk reservation and enterprise calling – delivering a more connected, manageable and affordable solution. The series also has zero touch provisioning and increased visibility to easily identify and troubleshoot issues with ThousandEyes.

* Product sustainability: Cisco Desk Phone 9800 Series comprise more than 74% post-consumer recycled (PCR) plastics. They are also equipped with new low power modes to ensure optimal energy efficiency, as well as energy usage and carbon emission insights available in Control Hub. In addition, two phones in this series have received EnergyStar certification, with complete certification of the series expected this year.