Cisco expands tech offerings for SMBs with focus on mobility, cloud


Over the past several months, Cisco has refocused its business back to its core products: networking gear. It has been a gut check, of sorts, for the company aimed at assuring service providers and large enterprise customers that its products remained the gold standard for the industry.

Cisco Access Point

Cisco's Small Business Wireless Access Point WAP321 (pictured) and WAP121 are 802.11n and support 2.4GHz Wi-Fi.

Now, it has also tuned up its offerings for the small business market as well, today releasing a pair of routers, two wireless access points and a unified communications product.

The "new" small business networking line is available immediately, and it's clear that Cisco wants to take SMBs off the consumer gear they often settle for, and move them into more robust, commercial-grade products.

The routers, Cisco's RV 180 and RV 180W, include 4 gigabit Ethernet LAN ports, 10 VPN tunnels, gigabit WAN connectivity and VoIP support. The RV 180W, with support for 2.4GHz 802.11n Wi-Fi, also can be used as a wireless bridge, access point or repeater. They cost $180 and $246 respectively.

The two access points--WAP121 and WAP321--also are 802.11n and support 2.4GHz Wi-Fi (The WAP321 also offers 5GHz Wi-Fi.) and four and eight SSIDs respectively. Both connect over a 10/100 Ethernet port, and use power over Ethernet.

Of course, the increasing popularity of VoIP among small businesses, as well as the accelerating uptake of unified communications products, has prompted a flurry of vendor activity in the space.

Cisco, as part of its updated product line, is offering its own take on UC with the UC320W, which gives users networking support and PBX-style telephone as well. The gear supports up to 24 phones and includes a 2.4GHz 802.11n router. It also rolled out two VoIP phones and a Wi-Fi bridge that can make them wireless. The phones, the SPA512G and SPA514G, include built-in two-port gigabit Ethernet switches, so you can use them to connect other network devices.

Cisco also is offering a new line of switches that range from 24 to 52 ports, include VRRP and are IPv6 compatible. The 500 series of stackable, managed switches list for $590 to $5500.

For more:
- see this release
- see this PC World article

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