The first fruits of the Airespace acquisition produce a tracking device: The Wireless Location Appliance 2700 allows network managers to track anything with a Wi-Fi adapter in it, whether the adapter is part of a Wi-Fi-based RFID tracking system for high-priced assets (like hospital equipment), a laptop, or an employee with a Wi-Fi VoIP phone.
In a briefing earlier this week, Cisco managers explained that assets and individuals can be tracked both over time and in real-time with thousands of devices trackable per location appliance. This would, for instance, allow a company to pinpoint when a device had moved out of a building and disappeared--allowing them to check that date and time with various security cameras.
The appliance works at relatively high protocol layers and has an API that will allow it to be integrated into other systems that already handle the front end of asset management, such as PanGo Locator offered by PanGo Networks. With companies already tracking assets by number in these systems, tying them into a real-time display can allow hospitals--and early and obvious market--to know precisely where equipment is before it's needed.
Cisco acquired Airespace mere weeks ago and this is the first fruit of collaborative labor between existing Cisco product teams and the upstarts with their fancy lightweight access points.