X

Cisco's consumer failures (photos)

The networking giant is killing the Flip video business to "realign" its priorities. But Flip isn't the only consumer-oriented venture that hasn't worked out for Cisco.

ericaogg.jpg
ericaogg.jpg
Erica Ogg
Flip-video_610x241.jpg
1 of 6 Cisco

Flip video

The news today that Cisco has decided to kill the Flip video business was sudden, but not altogether shocking considering the competitive landscape for small, mobile HD video cameras. Most smartphones can take HD video and easily upload it to the Web now, something that when Cisco bought Pure Digital for $590 million wasn't as commonplace. But with the growth of smartphones there's less need for a separate portable HD video device.

Cisco purchased Pure Digital, the maker of the popular flash-based camera because it was clearly the leader in its field. The Flip Video set itself apart by making the process of creating, editing, and uploading short videos to sites like YouTube very uncomplicated. In the two years before Cisco bought it, Pure Digital--a nobody in the consumer electronics world--said it sold 2 million devices.

Linksys.jpg
2 of 6 Cisco

Linksys Wireless Home Audio System

The Linksys Wireless Home Audio system, introduced in early 2009, was designed to be a Sonos killer. It bore a remarkable resemblance to the Sonos Multi-Room Music System, offering networked base stations designed to live in several rooms of the house and play digital music from networked PCs or online audio sources.

It ultimately never worked as advertised.

FlipshareTVgrouping_610x423.jpg
3 of 6 Cisco

FlipShare TV

FlipShare TV was a baffling product launched in late 2009 that allowed you to share your Flip videos to your TV via a USB adapter for your PC and the FlipShare base station.

Rather than building the video-sharing capability directly into the already popular Flip camera, it came up with the FlipShare TV, which just seemed like extraneous hardware that served a single purpose.

It was never really heard from again after the initial introduction.

CIT310_210x291.jpg
4 of 6 Linksys

Linksys iPhone

Before the wildly successul Apple iPhone there was the Linksys iPhone, a handset for making Skype and landline calls with no PC connection required.

Cisco ended up settling with Apple after a trademark dispute over the name arose, and the original iPhone went away rather quietly.

LinksysMediaExtender.jpg
5 of 6 CNET

Linksys Media Extender with DVD

The Linksys Media Center Extender w/ DVD was supposed to be Cisco taking advantage of its purchase of Kiss Technology for $60 million in 2005, a company that made DVD players that could connect to the Web.

Ultimately it joined the rest of the failed media extenders that came and went around the same time, all of them meant to let consumers stream audio, video, and photos from a Windows PC. Many consumers just opted for a Microsoft Xbox 360 instead, which was close in price and offered most of the same features for the Windows Media Center experience, plus it was a popular video game console.

CiscoUmi.jpg
6 of 6 Cisco

Cisco Umi

Umi (pronounced YOU-me) is one of Cisco's consumer businesses that will avoid Flip's fate.

The Umi HD telepresence service--which is made up of a Cisco-issued HD camera with an embedded microphone, a set-top box, and a remote, and requires an HDTV connected the Web--allows people to make video conference calls using their TV.

While the product won't live on in its current incarnation, the main elements will be wrapped into Cisco's telepresence offering for business customers.

More Galleries

2022's Best TV Shows You Can't Miss on Netflix, HBO, Disney Plus and More
John Cena attends Warner Bros. premiere of The Suicide Squad, in costume as Peacemaker.

2022's Best TV Shows You Can't Miss on Netflix, HBO, Disney Plus and More

95 Photos
US Air Force at 75: These Are the Aircraft It's Flown
110403-f-ka253-155

US Air Force at 75: These Are the Aircraft It's Flown

45 Photos
The Best Games on Nintendo Switch in 2022
zelda-cnet-2.jpg

The Best Games on Nintendo Switch in 2022

36 Photos
Toyota C-HR Prologue Sharpens Up the Small SUV
Toyota C-HR Prologue

Toyota C-HR Prologue Sharpens Up the Small SUV

11 Photos
The 51 Best VR Games
astro-bot-rescue-mission-screen-02-ps4-us-18may18

The 51 Best VR Games

53 Photos
Movies Coming in 2022 From Marvel, Netflix, DC and More
thor4

Movies Coming in 2022 From Marvel, Netflix, DC and More

85 Photos
2024 Acura Integra Type S Looks Sharp in Camouflage
2024 Acura Integra Type S

2024 Acura Integra Type S Looks Sharp in Camouflage

9 Photos