News Release

Cisco Systems and Mirapoint Team Up to Deliver Flexible, Cost-Effective Unified Communications Solution

CESCOM First Customer to Deploy Joint Solution Worldwide; Spanlink Communications First Integrator
May 08, 2001

SAN JOSE, Calif. and SUNNYVALE, Calif. - January 8, 2001 - Cisco Systems, Inc., the worldwide leader in networking for the Internet, and Mirapoint Inc., a leading provider of Internet messaging infrastructure products, today announced a new unified communications (UC) solution enabling a more flexible, cost-effective and less complex installation, reducing time-to-market for service provider customers. Teaming their technologies, the two companies are enabling service providers such as CESCOM and Nhancement Technologies (doing business as Appiant Technologies) to gain a significant competitive advantage by deploying enhanced UC services faster and more cost effectively than ever before.

The joint solution brings together the Cisco uOne unified communications software platform with Mirapoint's Internet messaging server appliances, and has been designed to address the business models of the service provider marketplace. Based on open IP standards, the solution enables service providers to "pay as they grow" by allowing them to make incremental investments in hardware and software as their businesses expand.

Unified communications moves beyond unified messaging to provide users with IP-based real-time, two-way call and notification services combined with voicemail, e-mail and fax in a single message store. International Data Corporation (IDC), predicts that by the year 2004 there will be an estimated 28 million users of UC technology, creating $5.8 billion in revenue for unified communications service providers.

"As voice and IP networks converge, service providers are looking to quickly and cost effectively deploy value-added communications services," said Bill Wolfe, general manager, Unified Communications Software Business Unit, Cisco Systems, Inc. "By bringing together Cisco's IP standards-based uOne unified communications software platform with Mirapoint's messaging appliance approach, we are providing substantial total cost of ownership advantages and delivering sustainable competitive time and revenue benefits to service providers worldwide."

The Cisco uOne software platform enables service providers to provide enhanced IP-based unified communications services that allow users to interact with their messages regardless of location, access device or media type. Mirapoint's Internet Message Server takes the complexity out of deploying these UC services by offering a messaging product that is secure, easy to manage and simple to maintain. Combining the two technologies through standards-based IP messaging protocols eliminates the need for specialized communications protocols -- thereby reducing the time and expense of integration. As part of the integration efforts for the joint solution, Mirapoint's server appliances have been tested for interoperability with Cisco's uOne software platform.

"Until now, it has been relatively complex and costly for service providers to offer unified communications services," said Satish Ramachandran, Mirapoint's chairman and CEO. "With our announcement today, Cisco and Mirapoint enable customers to overcome the barriers associated with deploying unified communications-- making it extremely easy and painless to offer these services. Together, we are making unified communications viable."

Components of the Cisco-Mirapoint Joint UC Solution

The Cisco-Mirapoint UC solution integrates software and hardware components from each company including:

  • Cisco Access Server Products - the Cisco AS5x00/Voice Gateway Family including the award-winning Cisco dial-up remote access server and voice-over-IP (VoIP) gateway.

  • Cisco's uOne unified communications software platform - an open, scalable IP-based solution that provides advanced unified multimedia messaging and communications, including voice mail, e-mail, and fax across multiple types of networks and devices layered with real-time call management capabilities.

  • Mirapoint Internet messaging server appliances - comprised of integrated hardware and software, these application-specific products provide standards-based message delivery, storage and access functions. With Mirapoint products, end users can access the same inbox from traditional e-mail clients, Wireless Application Protocol (WAP)-enabled devices or the Web. The products also provide anti-virus and anti-spam capabilities and supports VeriSign digital certificates.

Customers Deploying Cisco-Mirapoint UC Solution

The Cisco-Mirapoint joint UC solution enables service providers to more rapidly begin offering communications services including unified access to voice mail, fax and e-mail, VoIP (Voice over IP) call management and routing, intelligent agent applications, automated speech recognition capabilities, and wireless applications.

CESCOM, an international telecommunications service provider that specializes in IP-based communications solutions, is offering a new class of UC service based on the joint Cisco-Mirapoint solution. "We are very proud to be the first next-generation service provider to deploy an advanced hosted service that is based on the highly-reliable UC platform from Cisco and Mirapoint, and which natively supports all key Internet standards," said Samir Talhami, president and CEO, CESCOM. "The open IP-based architecture of our service enables development, rapid deployment and seamless integration of rich applications and enhanced features. All this translates into superior performance and minimum up-front investment for the operators and ISPs that we serve."

In addition, Nhancement Technologies (now doing business as Appiant Technologies, Inc.), a software application and infrastructure company specializing in hosted end-to-end unified communications and unified information (UC/UI) applications for service providers, is working closely with Cisco and Mirapoint to integrate these new services into their inUnison UC/UI product suite. Appiant will deploy the inUnison product with expanded features and functionality in the first quarter of 2001.


To deliver the joint solution to market, Cisco and Mirapoint are working with best-in-class consultants and systems integrators. Spanlink Communications, a leading provider of unified communications services for Internet communications service providers, is the first integrator to support the joint Cisco-Mirapoint solution. Spanlink, a certified systems integrator for both Cisco and Mirapoint product lines, specializes in products and services that facilitate rapid deployment of IP-based solutions. Spanlink will work with service providers to ensure rapid deployment of Cisco-Mirapoint UC solutions.