Cisco on Wednesday introduced AppHQ, an application ecosystem built specifically to help enterprise users create, manage and deploy applications for its Cius tablet.
Cius, as you may remember, is a Google Android-based, security-minded device targeted at business professionals who want to collaborate with each other via voice, video and virtualization. It's due to arrive globally on July 31 for less than $750.
AppHQ is the second step in the formula, offering a place for developers to create, test and market applications for Cisco's tablet.
It's also the place where IT managers can control which applications can be used on the devices.
The portal allows companies to create private, custom-branded app storefronts. To underscore the point, Cisco announced CDW, Nervecentre Software, Nottingham University Hospitals, Palomar Pomerado Health, University of Wisconsin-Whitewater and Verizon as launch partners.
Cisco's quick to point out that it's not just a fancy app store; rather, it's a secure platform that offers IT-specific functionality, such as guaranteed Cisco testing and validation, the aforementioned corporate "store-within-a-store" concept and IT-friendly role and device rules to govern app use.
Naturally, AppHQ will launch with select Cisco applications for collaboration, including WebEx, Quad, Jabber and TelePresence. The company is quick to note that IT managers also have 200,000 Android Marketplace applications at their disposal, just in case you feel compelled to roll out "Stupid Zombies" across your company's devices.
Will Cisco make some headway in the business tablet market? It remains to be seen, but out-of-the-box enterprise software functionality certainly doesn't hurt. BlackBerry PlayBook, anyone?