Monthly Archives: April 2012

What’s next for Jabber?

From my view, it seems like Jabber is starting to really take hold in the hearts and minds of the customers I speak with.

Getting a clear picture of Jabber is the first step in this, so if you are fuzzy on what exactly Jabber is, spend 3 minutes on this post and watch the quick video.


I’ve been spending more time traveling recently, and as I flew to Texas for meetings, I had some time to reflect on what capabilities are most lacking in Jabber.

By the end of the year I expect Cisco to be nearly complete on their vision of the same core capabilities across device platforms.

That begs the question – what should Cisco focus on for their next phase of development on Jabber?

That is the question I would like to to consider with this capabilities request.

It is great that Jabber runs on so many platforms – either natively or using third-party products (like Polycom, Apple, and more).

The biggest downside to that however is, my experience and history doesn’t move between devices.

The Jabber clients need to have a shared MEMORY, and be LOCATION aware.

Let me give you an example of what I mean.



I was at a Cisco office a few weeks ago, and meeting up with a co-worker for lunch following the meetings at Cisco.

Naturally I was logged into Jabber on my Mac, and got the address and name of the restaurant we were going to be meeting at.

After I left Cisco, I realized I wanted to double-check the address as I was unfamiliar with the territory.

Out came my phone, and I logged into Jabber IM on the iPhone.

Unfortunately – all the messages from the Mac…were on the Mac, not on my iPhone’s client.

As we use mobile devices more, it will become more and more intolerable for information to be tied to the device it was created on.

Therefore – my feature request for the Jabber brand is that you add a SHARED MEMORY to the list of capabilities.

Let the products (Jabber for Mac, Jabber for PC, etc.) be aware of each other, let them inform each other of my preferences, behavior, and communications.

Let them sync my messages so that I have access to my communication history across the Jabber brand, not in a single product.

Products that sync across products/devices already exist and are widely available today – Evernote, DropBox, Box, VMware’s Octopus, etc.

Worst case – Cisco should buy Evernote and stuff it inside Jabber! 🙂



For a long time I was reticent to embrace location capabilities in my personal and work apps, however I’m quickly finding new uses for this capability and look forward to it making its way to enterprise applications.

For instance, this morning I met with a co-worker at Starbucks, but was unfamiliar with the area.  I got to the Starbucks I thought we were going to, and checked in on Foursquare.  My coworker texted me to let me know he was running about 10 minutes behind, and I was able to have him verify on Foursquare that the location I was checked in at was the right Starbucks.  Location quickly accessible on a mobile app is very useful.



The real power comes when you can combine both location awareness and a shared memory.  As a simple scenario – I could walk into a conference room, “check in” on a mobile device or my laptop, and have a video call that is scheduled for ME, not for a ROOM, appear on the telepresence unit in the room.  This takes Cisco’s vision around Quad – “collaboration activities should center around people, not documents” and extends it across the overall portfolio.

At this point, we could add one more capability to Jabber’s repertoire – INTELLIGENCE.

What is Cisco Jabber?

I’ve seen (and admittedly spread) some confusion about Cisco Jabber in the past couple of years.

About 6 months ago I built a quick training for my team to try to provide a clear and simple answer to the question – “What is Cisco Jabber”?

Since then we’ve added several people so I wanted to make the pitch clear, concise, and…available on demand.

I captured a recording of me giving the explanation and posted my first draft on YouTube.

Imagine my surprise when the video quickly went “mini-viral” hitting 1,000 views within a few days.

Take 3 minutes to watch the very brief, and hopefully very clear answer to “What is Cisco Jabber?”

The power of open standards – Cisco Jabber and Apple OS X Mountain Lion

As you may or may not have heard, Apple has a new OS on the way – “OS X Mountain Lion“.  In this new OS, they are including an updated application for IM/Presence/Chat called Messages (although it may be changed to iMessage to match the app on IOS devices).

Of course this app focuses on FaceTime and iMessage communication to iPads, iPod Touches, iPhones – however like iChat before it you can use it as a client for IM services that use open standards….like Cisco’s Jabber services!

The power of open standards is this.  Use the application you want to use.  When a new one comes out from your favorite computer maker, use it!  If you want to have a single client that ties FaceTime (an Apple proprietary environment) and IM with customers, partners, and co-workers, go for it!  If you want to use the applications from the manufacturer, go for it.  If the manufacturer doesn’t have an application for your desired OS (yet), go for it!

Don’t box yourself into a corner.  Choose open standards.

If you want to try out the new Messages app you can download a beta of it from here.

Below is a quick video of how to setup the Messages app for use with Cisco’s Jabber Connect service.