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Hard numbers on Cisco Cius sales weren't easy to come by, and partners told CRN as far back as last summer that customer interest was tepid, at best, especially with Apple's second-generation iPad having arrived. When Cisco continued to tout Cius at its Collaboration Summit in November, Cisco executives told CRN as recently as last fall that the Cius would remain a focus of what Cisco called a $42 billion TAM in collaboration for Cisco solution providers.
As late as December, Cisco was telling reporters that Cius sales had "met expectations" and that bigger- and smaller-form factor versions of the Cius were in development for the new year.
But by the time the Cisco Partner Summit kicked off in San Diego in April, the Cius was nearly invisible, and Cisco had shifted much of its key collaboration discussion to Jabber and how to quell the threat from Microsoft's suddenly-scary Lync UC platform.
"When we had Collaboration Summit in November, Cius was everywhere -- you couldn't get away from it," Force 3's Parry said. "Then, by the time we got to Partner Summit, it had basically disappeared."
The O.J. Winge blog on Cius' fate came less than five weeks later.
AOS' Alexander said Cisco's Cius decision is a smart move -- one Cisco had to make.
"The old rule of holes is: when you know you're digging yourself into a hole, stop digging," he said. "It was, 'Yeah, we made this huge commitment to Cius, but it isn't working. So let's stop digging this hole.'"
Alexander said AOS had little, if any, success with Cius, but that AOS chose not to push the tablet too hard because they didn't want it to look bad for customers if and when Cisco decided to de-emphasize it. Other solution providers were in similar situations, including Force 3, which sells primarily to federal government customers.
"We had a lot of conversations about it. We talk a lot about BYOD, and federal is a little behind that trend, so you would have thought that Cius might have been a happy answer to the question," Parry said. "But the answer from CIOs always seemed to come back to iPad. They want to use that, and they wanted things in the display and things around VDI that Cius sort of fell short on. We just had very limited demand for it."