A Momentous Week for 4 Tech Vendors

I’d typically argue that having a significant event or announcement anywhere near an election is foolish. Well, four vendors decided to prove me wrong by having events and making announcements that have a material impact that, at times, goes well beyond the technology market and the U.S.

Even though this was unintentional, each vendor’s announcement appeared designed to cut through the noise, and some could directly impact future elections.

Let’s talk about how Cisco, Lenovo, Microsoft, and Qualcomm disrupted the world last week, and we’ll close with my new favorite digital assistant, the new Amazon Echo 4th Generation, which may be one of the best holiday gifts under $100.


Cisco had its partner event last week, and while much of that event focused on Cisco’s channel efforts, there was a ton of additional content. Due to the election, there were two things they announced that particularly caught my attention. Those were Connected Justice Solution for Courts and Webex Legislate.

Connected Justice Solution for Courts is a program that allows judicial systems both in the U.S. and abroad to carry out court hearings better virtually. But it goes beyond that because, much like education-focused systems, it takes the overhead away from the judge, allowing them to do their jobs more efficiently.

Also, even after the pandemic, it addresses several pre-existing problems with court systems, particularly in the U.S. I’ve been in several courtrooms over the last few years. Invariably there are technological messes with unreliable and mismatched solutions, a lack of connectivity for attorneys and their clients, and an unsustainable workload that detracts significantly from a judge’s ability to understand a case — let alone consistently rule on the law.

This is on top of the problems associated with getting juries seated on time, travel to and from the court for attorneys and their clients, and the increased security threats, both physical and electronic, that revolve around court appearances.

Cisco’s solution virtualizes the process by allowing people to join safely and securely remotely, and removes the aggravation of all the mismatched technology that clutters up courtrooms. The result should be an increase in the effectiveness of judges, greater personal safety and security, and far higher productivity which should materially improve the court process and make it far more convenient.

Even more powerful is Webex Legislate. This tool was designed to help governments function remotely. Since legislatures like ours tend to allow lawmakers to work from home, they are better able to be informed on the issues they are to vote on, better able to vote when they are remote due to illness or campaign requirements, and more protected against illnesses — from the common cold to pandemics.

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