Cisco Intros New Spark Devices
March 29, 2017
has continued to roll out new innovations for Cisco Spark, including new
video conferencing solutions that are built to register to both Cisco
Spark and on-premises deployments, advanced security options, the
ability for any standards-based SIP endpoint (hardware or soft client)
to join a Cisco Spark Meeting and new customer care capabilities.
“Cisco Spark is already a powerful platform, but we are constantly
innovating to add more advanced capabilities,” said Jens Meggers, Senior
Vice President and General Manager for Cisco’s Cloud Collaboration
Technology Group. “Our goal is to create powerful, well-designed
end-to-end experiences -- for the user, IT and the Enterprise. Cisco
Spark delivers on this vision and is quickly becoming the center of the
New Video Collaboration Hardware
Designed to work with Cisco Spark, the new Cisco Spark Room Kit Series
gives integrators what they need to extend powerful, intelligent meeting
experiences to small, medium and large conference rooms. The two new
products – Cisco Spark Room Kit and Room Kit Plus – attach to standard
HD screens and convert them into powerful video collaboration systems.
The Room Kits enable smarter
meetings, smarter presentation capabilities and smarter room/device
integrations to enhance the meeting experience and bring innovations
once exclusive to higher-end, more expensive systems to every room and
•Smarter meetings: Integrated 5K Ultra HD camera delivers intelligent
view capabilities, such as automatic framing and speaker tracking.
•Smarter presentations: Dual
screens, dual content sources, wireless sharing, and 4K content make for
•Smarter integrations: Cisco Spark
enabled Room Kits can count and track the number of people in the
conference room during and between calls, allowing facilities managers
to get a better understanding of how well the spaces are utilized.
•Registration flexibility: Built
for both Cisco Spark and on-premises deployments, protecting your
The Room Kit is designed for small/medium rooms of up to seven people,
while the Room Kit Plus can accommodate medium/large rooms of up to 14
people. The Room Kit is an all-in-one device with camera, speakers and
microphones built in. The Room Kit Plus has a separate quad camera bar
with four individual cameras to accommodate larger and deeper rooms.
Because Room Kit and Room Kit Plus are fully cloud managed, they can be
set up in minutes. Both systems are designed to connect natively with
Cisco Spark but can also register on-premises.
Available this month, the MSRP for the Cisco Spark Room Kit is U.S.
$3,990 plus U.S. $99/month subscription. The Room Kit Plus will be
available in May for U.S. $7,990 plus U.S. $99/month subscription.
Companion Mode, which will be used to combine a Cisco Spark Board and
Spark Room Kit for larger rooms, will be available later this year.
Enhanced Cisco Spark Content Security Options
Cisco Spark is designed with security and information protection as a
priority, so we have built it as an enterprise grade platform with
end-to-end encryption for data in transit, at rest, and in use. We
encrypt and decrypt all content using dynamic keys from a Cisco Spark
Key Management Server (KMS). This server creates, stores, authorizes,
and provides access to the encryption keys that Cisco Spark applications
use to encrypt and decrypt content locally.
For customers who require additional information protection options and
controls, such as those in regulated industries with specific security
requirements, we are announcing the ability to own and manage their
encryption keys by installing Cisco Spark Key Management Server
on-premises. Customers managing their own keys will enjoy the full
functionality of Spark, including the ability to search encrypted data.
This option will be available in early June.
Cisco Spark Meetings – now easy to join from any device
Now anyone can join a Cisco Spark meeting. All Cisco Spark spaces will
have a persistent SIP URI, allowing people to join meetings in those
spaces from any standards-based SIP hardware or software client such as
third-party softphones to installed base Cisco video conferencing
products and even to competitive video conferencing endpoints.
We have also extended this capability to Cisco Spark Hybrid Media
Services. The service lets Cisco Spark customers place a Hybrid Media
Node onto their network, to provide local media processing for
on-premises attendees in Cisco Spark meetings, enabling them to get the
quality video that they would expect from an on-premises video meeting
solution and save on bandwidth costs. Customers get the quality,
reliability, and economic benefits of premise video, yet also get the
infinite capacity, global reach, ease of use, and simple provisioning of
a cloud service.
This allows customers to transition to or try Cisco Spark meetings with
virtually no risk, retaining all of their existing investment in
infrastructure, endpoints, and conferencing solutions.
No additional licensing required for Cisco Spark Hybrid Media Service.
The capability is included with M3/C3 Cisco Spark meeting and WebEx
Cisco Spark Adds Customer Care Capabilities
Spark now enables help desks and small teams to provide customer care to
both external and internal customers, using web chat and callback
designed by a world leader in contact center solutions. Cisco Spark
care, designed for companies using or considering Cisco Spark, can help
businesses give their customers faster, more focused service because
they have the necessary history and context from previous interactions.
This service includes a customer care user workspace and integrated
reporting with customer feedback. With Cisco Spark care, small teams now
have a simple, powerful, and cost-effective way to care for their
Cisco Spark care is an optional license on the Cisco Spark collaboration
platform, with integrated administration and enterprise class security.
Available in April, Cisco Spark care is priced at $17 per named user per
month, with an annual subscription.