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WebEx gets shiny Chromebook look

Cisco targets growing platform in otherwise-limp laptop market

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Cisco and Google have agreed to play nice in the enterprise, with the two deciding to collaborate to put the WebEx collaboration service on Chromebook machines.

Cisco's Rowan Trollope, senior veep and general manager for the Collaboration Technology Group, made the announcement along with Google's Rajen Sheth at Enterprise Connect in Orlando, and blogged it here.

The pair demonstrated a prototype of WebEx on Chromebook, calling it a “sign of things to come” – which presumably means a product's going to ship. Google's post discussing the announcement expands somewhat, saying that not only will WebEx be coming to Chromebook.

“We're also integrating Cisco UC technologies into Google Apps, helping our joint customers work better together. Imagine joining a WebEx meeting directly from Calendar, or starting an instant meeting from Contacts or the Gmail People widget. Starting today, if you use Cisco and Google Apps, features you love, like messaging, fax, click-to-call and Cisco presence, are visible alongside Gmail,” Google's Chrome for Business product manager Saswat Panigrahi writes.

Cisco cites Chromebook's “explosive growth” as the attraction, and says the new WebEx version represents a complete redesign of the software for the new environment. In the Cisco / Google promo video, Sheth claims that Chromebook as “21 per cent of the US commercial market”, making it pretty much irresistable for The Borg. ®

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