News Release

Cisco Enables New Wireless Business Applications and Enhanced Security through Real-Time Device Tracking

Cisco 2700 Series Wireless Location Appliance Brings Accurate and Scalable Location Services to the Wireless Enterprise
May 04, 2005

LAS VEGAS, NV, May 4, 2005 - Cisco Systems today announced the Cisco 2700 Series Wireless Location Appliance, the industry's first easy to deploy solution for simultaneously tracking thousands of IEEE 802.11 enabled wireless clients from directly within a customer's existing wireless local area network (LAN) infrastructure. The Cisco 2700 Series Wireless Location Appliance brings the power of a cost-effective, high resolution location solution that optimizes the performance of the wireless LAN for support of voice, data and now location, while rapidly locating security threats. By providing the ability to integrate tightly with a spectrum of technology and application partners, this innovative appliance facilitates the development of new and important business applications that improve asset utilization and streamline business processes.

"Lee Memorial Hospital is dedicated to providing state-of-the-art healthcare in South Florida while meeting tremendous demand to increase operational efficiencies at the same time," said Michael Smith, CIO of Lee Memorial Hospital. "With the Cisco Wireless Location Appliance, doctors nurses, and support staff can spend less time searching for equipment and more time providing patient care. High-end medical equipment scheduled for routine maintenance can now also be located in minutes not days."

The Cisco 2700 Series Wireless Location Appliance uses the radio frequency (RF) fingerprinting capabilities of the Cisco Wireless Control System (WCS) to accurately locate authorized or unauthorized 802.11-enabled devices to within a few meters. This includes wireless laptops, PDAs, Voice over wireless LAN (VoWLAN) handsets, rogue access points and clients, and devices equipped with active 802.11 Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) tags. The location of each device is graphically displayed on floor plans within Cisco WCS, enabling network administrators to rapidly and easily determine each device's physical location.

Building a single wireless LAN infrastructure capable of supporting multiple services also enables Cisco global strategy alliance partner IBM to target a broad range of industry segments with new wireless applications, such as location based services.

"Location services enable enterprises to deploy new business applications that harness the unique attributes of wireless mobility," said Don Lopes, Director, Global Wireless Business Development, IBM Global Services. "When location services are integrated within a wireless LAN system, they become an important component of network operations, security, and management."

Together, Cisco and IBM are partnering to advance the use of active RFID tagging on a wireless LAN network to help customers such as Westchester Medical Center track and manage high-value portable equipment and 802.11 devices.

"At Westchester Medical Center customer care is paramount," said Tom Toscano, Director of Telecommunications, Westchester Medical. "The location appliance from Cisco and IBM will provide pinpoint accuracy for everything from wheelchairs to EKG equipment, so our staff can provide the best -- and most immediate -- care possible."

The Cisco 2700 Series Wireless Location Appliance enables a variety of business applications that take specific advantage of the benefits of wireless mobility. These include:

  • Asset Tracking - Prevent loss or theft of valuable mobile assets, such as high-end medical equipment. Rapidly locate key people and resources anywhere in a wireless enterprise.
  • Inventory Management and Workflow Automation - Optimize inventory utilization and streamline workflow and dispatch processes.
  • Security - Locate the source of wireless LAN security threats, such as rogue access points and devices for rapid problem resolution.
  • Voice over Wireless LAN - Accurate location capabilities help enterprises comply with device tracking requirements for solutions like enhanced 911 (e911) services.

"The Cisco Wireless Location Appliance brings the power of high-resolution location to business-critical applications," said Alan Cohen, Senior Director of Product Management for Cisco's Wireless Networking Business Unit. "Working with a broad spectrum of technology and application partners, Cisco intends on making location a critical must-have for all wireless LAN networks."

To facilitate the adoption of location-based services in the enterprise, the Cisco Wireless Location Appliance comes equipped with a rich and open Application Programming Interface (API). This API is used for tight integration with external software applications, including 802.11-based wireless asset tracking applications from PanGo Networks. PanGo is a leading provider of location-aware applications that has integrated PanGo LocatorTM, its Wi-Fi-based RFID solution with the Cisco Wireless Location Appliance. The seamless integration of the PanGo Locator application brings real time asset visibility into the wireless LAN environment. This significantly improves the utilization of critical resources such as wheelchairs and infusion pumps in a healthcare environment or forklifts and pallets in a manufacturing environment, lowering capital and leasing costs — all while reducing search time and improving caregiver response times.

"Today's announcement is great news for any customer that wants to extend the power and intelligence of the network," said Mike McGuinness, President and CEO of PanGo Networks. "Cisco has made it possible for seamless integration between the network and location-aware applications, like PanGo Locator. The resulting solutions are a significant leap forward and unlike anything available in the market today."

With its commitment to protect and grow customers' investments in wireless LANs, Cisco will make more location-based services available through additional external software applications.

"We are very pleased with Cisco's introduction of this innovative and comprehensive Wireless Location Appliance. It is the industry's first solution that makes the wireless LAN infrastructure itself 'location aware', laying a strong foundation for a host of location based applications, and lowering the total cost of ownership for customers," said Yuval Bar-Gil, CEO of AeroScout. "We are working with Cisco to ensure tight integration between its Cisco Wireless Location Appliance and the AeroScout MobileView enterprise visibility application to ensure a total customer solution."

Pricing and Availability

The Cisco 2700 Series Wireless Location Appliance has a U.S. list price of $14,995 and is scheduled to ship in June 2005.