3 Helpful Tips About the Cisco 7900 Series

Sometimes when looking at the Cisco 7900 Series IP phone line, things seem to be about as clear as mud. Now we’re all smart people, but even smart people get a little confused about things that should be obvious, but just aren’t. So here are a few helpful tips about the Cisco 7900 Series phones to hopefully help clear up some questions you might have.

Katie, CXtec's Cisco Voice Product Manager, breaks down the Cisco 7900 Series in this short video.

1. What does that “G” mean?

First came the Cisco 7940’s and Cisco 7960’s. These were straightforward, just 2- and 4-line phones with nothing tricky about them. But shortly after came the 7940G’s and 7960G’s. Lots of folks assumed that “G” stood for Gig, just like it did on the Cisco switch lines.

But we were fooled! That “G” has nothing to do with Gig on the Cisco phones. It actually stands for “Global Icon.” The buttons on those phones don’t have words on them, instead they have symbols. So for example, the Messages button has a picture of an envelope on it instead of the word “Messages.” Ok, guess that makes sense.

2. “GE” means what you think it means.

Cisco next released the 7941G-GE and the 7961G-GE. Now in these instances, the “GE” actually does stand for “Gig Ethernet,” so those phones really do have a Gig port on the back of them. And that would be all well and good, if they didn’t go getting all tricky on us once again!

3. We have color phones. We have a “G.” But we have no “GE?” Gee whiz!

So you’re looking for a color phone with a Gig port on the back? Cool. The Cisco 7945G and 7965G fit that bill. Wait, say what…?!?

You’re probably asking how can that be possible since they don’t have the “GE” at the end of their part number? Yeah, lots of us thought that same thing. But Cisco put the Gig ports on the 7945G and 7965G even though they dropped the “GE” from their numbers. Crazy!

Clearer than mud at least, right?

Hopefully seeing it laid out like this helped you understand the Cisco 7900 Series a little bit better. It’s not quite so confusing when it’s arranged in a bit of a timeline. Yes, it still seems silly to break your own rules when naming part numbers, but when you break it down in a simple way those silly broken rules don’t seem quite so bad.

Remember if you have any Cisco IP phone questions, or any Cisco phone questions at all, feel free to give our experts a call.


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