On Thursday July 21, Cisco held an analyst event to provide more information on their new tablet, the Cius. The tablet is Cisco's entry into the rapidly growing tablet market. It is based on the Android operating system and has been designed to work with Cisco wireless LAN infrastructure. The table will be released on July 31st and is expected to retail for approximately 750USD. Finally, the device will not be available through traditional consumer retailers as the device has been designed for commercial enterprises.
With the introduction of this device, Cisco is not trying to design and develop a consumer tablet to rival the Galaxy Tab, Motorola Xoom or the iPAD. Rather they are trying to pursue the enterprise market. Over the long term, I believe that while the consumer tablets have their place, there is also plenty of space in the market for a dedicated business tablet. Designing the device to work within the corporate infrastructure can help to address some of the IT manager's traditional concerns, namely security and interoperability with existing solutions. I addition to the introduction of the tablet, Cisco provided more information on the introduction of the AppHQ, the Cisco created app store that provides IT managers the ability to control the apps deployed on this tablet.
IDC believes that the initial use cases for this device will be more around unified communications. Most early adopters will be using the tablet to join WebEx meetings, Telepresence sessions, or other communications needs. Further IDC believes that it will be used for organizations that need to deploy a mobile solution, but do not have the time or desire to have to integrate a new platform with existing communications infrastructure. Finally, IDC would recommend that end users that need an enterprise grade solution for their mobile employees, but do not want to embrace the bring your own device model, investigate the Cisco solution as it may provide the needed security and IT control that these users desire while satisfying the business needs.