SMP and the Rochester Triathlon

Saturday, August 23 marked the 5th annual Rochester Triathlon and the 4th year that SMP has served as the title sponsor of this unifying event. We truly enjoy working with the race committee and the Rochester Area Triathletes (RATS) to see the event come together. Triathlon is a unique endurance sport as it is well suited for spectator enjoyment as athletes flow into and out of the transition area for the swim, bike and run legs of the race. Due to the nature of the sport, the triathlon gathers larger crowds than one might expect. This year, many spectators sported their SMP temporary tattoo to receive an SMP t-shirt commemorating the event! In addition, we had a strong SMP turnout this year from both athletes and volunteers; showing the community a unique aspect of our culture. Together we were able to enjoy this exciting event, beautiful weather, great location and fun company!

SMP Volunteers SMP's triathlon team

Introducing the Cisco 8845 and 8865: Affordable HD Video for Every Desk

For those who missed it, Cisco recently released two next generation video phones called the 8845 and 8865.  The phones are richer in features than their 8900 and 9900 predecessors, and while nothing has been officially announced, the writing is on the wall that these new endpoints will phase out both the 8900 and 9900 in the very near future. Combine that with last weeks End of Sale announcement for the legacy 7900 series phones, and Cisco’s personal endpoint portfolio will soon consolidate to only the 7800 and 8800 series phones, along with Cisco’s desktop experience endpoints known as the DX series.

The 8845 and 8865 are orderable now and can be added to any Cisco Unified Communications Manager (CUCM) cluster running v8.6.2 and later.  Their value is superior to anything else in Cisco’s endpoint portfolio, with a street price of approximately $300 and $400 respectively.  Both have 720p cameras and 5 inch screens, support Intelligent Proximity and have Bluetooth.  The 8865 adds the ability to use USB headsets and attach up to three expansion modules (sidecars) as well.  Both will support Mobile and Remote access through Cisco Expressway (VPN’less connectivity no matter where you are), providing a secure, seamless experience whether you are in the office or working out of your home.

The 8845 and 8865 communicate natively with Cisco Jabber, 8900/9900 video phones, DX series endpoints, existing TelePresence and Conferencing infrastructure, and support both Business to Business and Consumer to Business video as well.  With the Video Call Back feature being added to WebEx in the very near future, even deeper integration is right around the corner.

If you already have a Cisco Unified Communications platform and are looking to refresh your phones, choosing the Cisco 8845 / 8865 is an economical way to add HD Video Telephony to workspaces where it doesn’t exist today.  If you are looking to replace your telephony platform with something new, this is just one more reason why you should consider selecting Cisco as your vendor of choice.

List pricing and datasheets for both endpoints are below.

CP-8845-K9= / $575 List pricehttp://www.cisco.com/c/en/us/products/collaboration-endpoints/ip-phone-8845/index.html#

CP-8865-K9= / $795 List pricehttp://www.cisco.com/c/en/us/products/collaboration-endpoints/ip-phone-8865/index.html

8845 Charcoal8845 White

NOTE:  The white model won’t be available for a couple of months, but the grey version is orderable now.

If you would like a demonstration of the 8845 or 8865 IP phone (or any Cisco Collaboration endpoint for that matter) please do not hesitate to reach out to the SMP Collaboration Team.

SMP is a Cisco Master Collaboration and Cisco Gold Partner, and we have a state of the art Solutions Center where we can demonstrate the latest and greatest in Cisco technologies in person or remotely.  Please reach out to us to learn more about how we can help you with your IT challenges.  We pride ourselves on enabling our customers so they can keep up with both the speed of business and IT.

Sean Wilson – swilson {at} smp-corp.com

SMP Cycles for a Cause

This June, SMP recruited both avid cyclists and beginners to ride and fundraise in support of two events that aim to improve health and longevity in our region. The Tour de Cure aims to stop diabetes and raise critical funds for education, advocacy and research through the American Diabetes Association. SMP riders participated in the Rochester tour in both the 40 and 20 mile rides on June 13th. In support of cancer research and patient care programs at Roswell Park Cancer Institute, SMP singed on as a Five Speed sponsor for the 2015 Ride for Roswell. On June 27th, SMP riders rode the 45 and 20 mile routes. At both events riders enjoyed scenic views, cheers from volunteers and the satisfaction of supporting such worthy causes!