Cisco plans to buy ExtendMedia

Cisco has today announced its intention to acquire ExtendMedia, a software firm specialising in content management systems (CMS) for multi-screen video.

Cisco plans to integrate the majority of the ExtendMedia team into its Service Provider Video Technology Group, while ExtendMedia’s Sales and Professional Services staff will move to Cisco’s Sales and Advances Services.

Cisco revealed its intent to utilise ExtendMedia’s software to help service providers deliver multi-screen offerings as the market transitions to IP video. It will probably sell ExtendMedia’s CMS to multi-screen video vendors, most likely with a services and management fee for continued Cisco support.

Multi-screen media is set to be the next big thing, with users experiencing the same content through multiple different devices, be it TV, computer, or through a smartphone. Motorola and Samsung are planning to offer multi-screen experiences and may potentially become some of Cisco’s customers as part of that process.

It’s like that Cisco is going to put its gaze firmly on video conferencing as part of this deal. It plans to offer a “next-generation, end-to-end video architecture” that will allow access to any content “over any network, on any device.” That’s a pretty big market, which is destined to grow over the coming years as the barriers between technology mediums dissipate.

The acquisition is expected to complete in the first half of Cisco’s fiscal year 2011. Financial terms of the deal were not revealed.