As the worldwide leader in networking for the Internet and creator of such innovative products as the Telepresence system, Cisco was developing the industry’s first Evolved Converged Cable Access Platform (CCAP), designed to increase Internet speed up to 10 Gbps. Speck Design’s team of researchers, designers, and engineers stepped in to create Cisco’s next generation CCAP platform, cBR-8, that would transform the Internet as we know it.
To create an appealing product, we conducted in-depth ethnographic interviews with field service technicians, field application engineers, and other potential users to understand their needs, pain points, and overall perceptions of the ease of installation and usability. The results indicated a need for an intuitive equipment design with straightforward cabling, easy access to critical components, clear labeling, and a user-friendly interface. More importantly, the aesthetic needed to make the cBR-8 stand out from Cisco’s other products.
Incorporating the research findings, our industrial designers created a bold, robust, and clean design that resulted in an iconic look with enviable usability. In addressing concerns around installation, maintenance, and accessibility, our team of engineers focused on enabling modular power, simple cabling, intuitive labeling, open rack design and layout, and increased airflow without compromising system mechanics.
Used by major cable operators including Comcast and Altice, the cBR-8 “integrates the previously stand-alone functions required in a cable hub, delivering the industry's first ‘hub-in-a-box’ solution, helping to enable cable operators to achieve savings that could exceed 40 percent of capital and operating expenses over five years,” according to Cisco.
The compact, long-lasting, future-oriented platform not only helps support rapidly increasing bandwidth deployment, but also includes features that give cBR-8 users pride of ownership. Visually, the product is unlike anything Cisco has released, set apart from the crowd of CCAP platforms.