Cisco Business Edition 3000, 6000 Updated

The Business Edition 3000 server makes available IP telephony for as little as $100 per user for a 100-user organization.

Unified communications and networking specialist Cisco Systems introduced innovations to the company's Business Edition 3000 and the Cisco Business Edition 6000 (formerly known as the Unified Communications Manager Business Edition 3000 and 6000, respectively). The Business Edition 3000 server makes available IP telephony for as little as $100 per user for a 100-user organization, while Business Edition 6000 integrates Cisco's WebEx Meeting Center and Jabber for instant messaging and presence.

Business Edition 3000 includes integration of features such as Session Initiation Protocol (SIP) trunking via the Cisco Unified Border Element. The update allows small and midsize businesses to replace traditional fixed public switched telephone network (PSTN) lines with PSTN connectivity via a SIP trunking service provider on the Internet. Customers also have integration with the company's WebEx Web conferencing solution. With this, employees can plan or initiate ad hoc meetings with other co-workers or third parties while employing full document sharing.

"With 800 employees, Kettle Produce is one of Britain's biggest suppliers of fresh vegetables to major supermarkets and multiple retailers. A single missed phone call can mean a major missed revenue opportunity if we harvest too little or a major problem if we harvest crops that may rot because no one wants to buy them that day," said Alan Berry, IS manager at Kettle Foods. "By replacing our aging PBX system with the Cisco Business Edition 3000, we got all the functionality we need today to maintain and grow our business. In the foreseeable future, we could reap further benefits by replacing regular business trips to our sister company in Spain with video conferences enabled by our new system."

Delivered through the Cisco Collaboration Cloud, Jabber provides a platform allowing business workers to collaborate using their preferred method-be it presence, IM, voice and video, voice messaging, desktop sharing, Web conferencing or audio. Using the company's Unified IP Phones 8941 and 8945, allows workers to video chat by dialing a regular phone number and then the participants can see one another on their respective devices.

Cisco has integrated WebEx Meeting Center and Jabber for IM and presence into Business Edition 6000 as well. In this release, the company further updates the appliance by embedding the virtualization software required to operate those virtualized applications. While the Business Edition 6000 is geared toward companies with 150 to 750 users, the lower limit for the platform is now 50 users (formerly 100).

"As a Cisco channel partner and trusted advisor to our midmarket customers, we look to provide an affordable collaboration solution for customers that delivers robust collaboration capabilities and addresses pressing business needs," said Gary Nordine, president of NetXperts, a Cisco Gold Certified Partner. "We've installed and supported the Cisco Business Edition portfolio for our customers, and the new enhancements plus Cisco's partner programs will help us accelerate and grow our collaboration practice."