Cisco, Apple on Collision Course Again
Hold the iPhone. Cisco Systems and Apple may wind up fighting for the remote control in your living room. Here’s why.
Less than two months after Apple and Cisco settled a lawsuit involving the iPhone name, Cisco has pumped some money into Avega Systems. The startup focuses on “whole-home” connectivity and digital content management.
Hmmm. Not exactly another Apple TV. But there will be some overlap here, folks. Apple TV specializes in simplicity: Choose a movie from iTunes, download it to a PC and move it wirelessly to Apple TV for display on your big screen. Avega seeks to do a whole lot more than that. The company’s technology ties together Internet radio, media center PCs, portable media players, cell phones, legacy AV components, networked storage and set top boxes.
Sounds complicated. And futuristic. But Cisco thinks Avega will be ready for prime time real soon. Charles Carmel, Cisco’s director of corporate business development, told Reuters that Avega’s technology will be embedded into Cisco products. Hmmm. Bet they wind up in Cisco’s Linksys gear. “We clearly are working closely with Avega and I would categorize it as a near-term opportunity,” Carmel told Reuters.
The VAR Guy is still getting up the nerve to ask his wife for $300 for Apple TV. Looks like he may need to sneak in some Avega gear through the back door.
UPDATE (4/18, 11:22am): One side note, Folks. The VAR Guy reported a couple of weeks ago that Cisco and Apple were still exploring possible ways to make the iPhone work with Cisco’s Unified Communications software. The discussions are ongoing even now, according to Apple Insider.