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Cisco buys Tropo to bolster collaboration portfolio

Cisco purchased Tropo before anyone else did.
Cisco purchased Tropo before anyone else did.

Cisco has announced that it will acquire Tropo, a relatively unknown company which specializes in Cloud APIs for voice and text applications.

The deal will allow the networking giant to offer communication features without the need to buy and install its hardware, a move that might be seen as counterproductive but it does buy Cisco time as rivals such as Twilio look to snatch market share (and revenue) from it.

Cisco partners and customers will, in the long run, be able to use these features to add to their own services or create new ones with little development effort.

Tropo's big advantage, as Cisco highlighted it, is that its applications integrate into the service provider's existing communications infrastructure, providing the latter with an advantage over OTT (over the top) competitors.

Neither Cisco nor Tropo disclosed details of the deal; Cisco gets access to a platform that has well over 200,000 developers and one that powers thousands of mobile and voice applications.

It also gets an immediate revenue stream as Tropo already counts some large enterprises (Deutsche Telekom AG, IBM and Apcera) as its customers, making money out of calls and texts charged via its PAAS (Platform as a service).