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Cisco Live 2024 Amsterdam Announcements — Delivering on Promises Made in 2023

Cisco’s announcements from the recent Cisco Live 2024 Amsterdam are significant and show a focus on consolidation and simplification. As Cisco’s Jeetu Patel remarked during the event, 2023 was the year of making promises, 2024 is the year of delivering on them.

In this inaugural episode of our series, This Week in Tech, I’m joined by Zeus Kerravala, principal analyst at ZK Research and member of theCUBE Collective Community to unpack the announcements from Cisco Live 2024 Amsterdam including Cisco security announcements, Webex updates, and good news on the sustainability and circularity front.

Watch the full episode here and stream it wherever you get your podcasts —

Here’s a brief overview of some of the announcements we covered.

Cisco Security Announcements 

As expected, Cisco made some significant security-related announcements at Cisco Live 2024 Amsterdam, including the announcement of Cisco Identity Intelligence, a move to infuse identity into Cisco Security Cloud and help customers utilize zero trust decisioning capabilities to defend against identity attacks. Cisco Identity Intelligence is designed to bring together networking, security, and identity and will enhance Cisco Duo, Cisco’s Extended Detection and Response (XDR) solution and Cisco Secure Access. Cisco Identity Intelligence is currently in private preview, and Cisco Duo Advantage and Premium customers can request access to the Duo Advanced Identity Protection Platform with Cisco Identity Intelligence here.

Cisco also announced the launch of the AI Assistant for Security in Secure Access, designed to help spur productivity and reduce complexity — both high on customer wish lists.

Webex Suite Updates and the Expected GA of AI Assistant for Webex 

Cisco’s AI Assistant for Webex was announced last year at WebexOne, and this is something that I’ve been looking forward to. The AI Assistant for Webex includes features like AI-powered meeting summaries and Vidcast summaries, which are expected to be generally available this month. These are the capabilities we’re hearing a lot about in the collaboration ecosystem, such as catching up on things missed in a meeting and/or video message, which are rapidly becoming table stakes.

Cisco Live 2024 Amsterdam, visual of Cisco AI Assistant
Image source: Cisco

Other Webex Suite updates announced at Cisco Live 2024 Amsterdam include:

  • Space Summaries and the capability to rewrite messages, adapting for tone, rephrasing, and/or translation, which should be available sometime in the first quarter
  • Cisco’s Vidcast is now available inside the Webex app.
  • HD Voice for Webex Calling, which removes background noises and converts narrowband audio to wideband, is coming in March for Webex Suite and Webex Calling customers.
  • Webex Go, the mobile solution that brings Webex Calling to the native dialer on mobile devices is now available in France.

Webex also announced that some of the features for Webex Contact Center, like Webex Contact Center with AI Assistant and the ability to generate automatic CSAT scores and topic analytics, as well as the ability to detect agent burnout as part of agent wellness capabilities, should soon be available in beta in the Webex Contact Center. We saw these features demoed at CiscoLive this past October, and it will be exciting to see them in the wild and get some customer feedback.

Webex for Apple Vision Pro

Also announced at Cisco Live 2024 Amsterdam was the availability of Webex for Apple Vision Pro. As Zeus and I discussed, Webex’s partnership with Apple goes back several years and the announcement of Webex for Apple Vision Pro is intended to be about powering the future of hybrid work. The new Webex App, designed exclusively for the Apple Vision Pro, is now available on the App Store for visionOS.

Webex also announced a spatial computing collaboration with Apple for the Apple Vision Pro, touting the ability to blend the physical world with the digital one and bringing intuitiveness into these experiences.

This “new dimension in productivity” is expected to be attractive to Apple Vision Pro users. I will note, however, that I’m seeing much feedback about the early purchasers of the Apple Vision Pro taking advantage of Apple’s two-week return policy. The feedback thus far from Apple loyalists — the only people shelling out $3500 for the device at this point —  includes comments that the device is too heavy, uncomfortable, and induces headaches. There is a reported glare problem, and reports of the device causing vision problems and eyestrain. Another reported troublesome factor is the expensive devices cannot be shared between users, as a specific, individual fit is required. The feedback most applicable to the partnership with Webex is that some users report they feel that using the Apple Vision Pro doesn’t make them any more productive and that a lack of ‘meaningful experiences’ can make them feel isolated. So, yeah, it doesn’t seem like we’re there yet regarding any kind of mass adoption.

If you decide to try it, here’s a look at what you can expect. When joining a Webex meeting, users can use the drag-and-drop functionality that they are so accustomed to from Apple to rearrange participants in the meeting, resize those windows, create and open shared content windows that are intuitive, and also drag-and-drop. This, combined with the availability of Webex for Apple TV 4k, which is now generally available, means that users can access Webex from home or office and collaborate in that way.

Image source: Cisco

Cisco Sustainability Announcements from Cisco Live 2024 Amsterdam

On the sustainability front, Zeus and I touched on Cisco’s announcements around low carbon mode, which are particularly attractive in the EMEA market, where sustainability is a much bigger issue than it is (yet) here in the States. Control Hub already has a sustainability dashboard, but the new carbon mode is a bit like the “power save” mode on your iPhone or in some newer model automobiles. When you put the Webex app in low carbon mode, it shuts off updates and runs a lot more efficiently. We vote to make this feature a default setting, as chances are good customers won’t notice and create some energy savings along the way.

ThousandEyes Integration into Cisco’s Security Toolset

In our view, ThousandEyes is an amazing product. It does a great job of monitoring experiences and is pretty much the only internet monitoring platform out there. The integration of ThousandEyes into Cisco’s SSE stack means customers can get a level of digital experience that the competition can’t. For example, if you’re working from home and your apps aren’t performing correctly, IT has a limited ability to help because they can only see the part of the network that they own. The visibility spectrum is limited, but ThousandEyes provides a view that other products don’t have. Seeing more ThousandEyes integrated into other products gets a big thumbs up from us — more, please!

That’s a wrap of our updates from Cisco Live 2024 Amsterdam.

About This Week in Tech: In this series, you can expect interesting, insightful, and timely discussions on a variety of topics, including technology news coverage of major vendors. Be sure to hit that “subscribe” button either here on the blog, on YouTube, or on your streaming platform so that you’ll never miss an episode. As always, let us know if you’ve got something you’d like us to cover. You can find us on the interwebs here:

Shelly Kramer on LinkedIn | Twitter/X

Zeus Kerravala on LinkedIn | Twitter/X

Disclosure: theCUBE Research is a research and advisory services firm that engages or has engaged in research, analysis, and advisory services with many technology companies, which can include those mentioned in this article. The author holds no equity positions with any company mentioned in this article. Analysis and opinions expressed herein are specific to the analyst individually, and data and other information that might have been provided for validation, not those of theCUBE Research or SiliconANGLE Media as a whole.


Other relevant reads:

Cisco Announces Cisco Identity Intelligence, Infusing Identity into Cisco Security Cloud

Breaking Analysis: Cloud Optimization Wanes as AI Slowly Takes Off

Ai Reskilling and The Intersection of Society and Tech

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