Cisco and Apple said this week they have "optimized" how iPhone and Pad devices will communicate with a Cisco wireless network, created a "fast lane" for business critical apps, and made Cisco's Spark collaboration platform a "seamless experience" on the iPhone.
The companies first announced a partnership in August; going forward they will leverage new capabilities and APIs Apple has built into iOS 10, according to Rowan Trollope, senior vice president and general manager of Cisco's Internet of things and collaboration technology group.
"When you're at work and on the go, your iPhone or iPad will simply 'know' what's the best available wireless access point for you—and will select it by default," Trollope wrote in a blog post. "This makes performance of all your apps, especially real-time apps like voice and video, much more reliable, particularly when you are on the move."
That "fast lane," meanwhile, will let IT departments "prioritize the apps most critical to your business," meaning you'll never again have to ask a co-worker to knock it off with the cat videos while you're on a WebEx or Spark call.
Finally, Spark is now "completely optimized" for iPhone and iPad devices, so you can simply tap a contact in your address book to make a VoIP call without having to launch a third-party app. In addition, Spark calls will now ring on the lock screen, just like a regular call, and you will have access to mute and call waiting. You can also ask Siri to use Spark to call contracts.
Meanwhile, Cisco also this week launched a $10 million Global Cybersecurity Scholarship program aimed at increasing "the pool of available talent with critical cybersecurity proficiency." In its announcement, Cisco cited research that indicates there will be a global shortage of two million cybersecurity professionals by 2019, and said it's looking to "help close this security skills gap." Scholarship awards will be available from Aug. 1 until the end of July 2017.