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Cisco’s Latest Networking Innovations: Bringing Intelligent Networks to Industrial Automation

Today, Cisco announced the Industrial Ethernet (IE) 2000 switch series which will help customers build intelligent networks for industrial automation by delivering highly secure, scalable connectivity from plant floor to enterprise network.

Cisco’s IE2000 switch series provides:
- consistent network services between industrial networks and enterprise business applications
- integrated security
- better manageability
- highly secure remote access and monitoring of automated systems
- intelligent energy management with visibility into machine performance to help customers better manage costs.

The IE2000 industrial switch also interoperates across corporate and manufacturing floor networks in a cost-effective manner to deliver video and corporate applications to manufacturing plant floor.

The IE2000 switch series is key product from our Connected Industries business unit.  According to Maciej Kranz, vice president and general manager of Cisco’s Connected Industries business unit, “Major sectors of the economy are undergoing a transformation driven by new requirements around production and factory automation, traffic management, data analytics and machine-to-machine communication.  Cisco’s Connected Industries business unit was created to help customers realize the benefits of the transition to Ethernet and IP across the operational technology segments including manufacturing plants, transportation infrastructure and vehicles.”

Many of you have highlighted machine-to-machine (M2M) communications as a key consideration for organizations over the next few years.  Cisco’s own Visual Networking Index (VNI) showed that, by 2016, there will be nearly 2 billion machine-to-machine wireless connections.  This includes everything from in-car GPS systems to asset tracking systems in manufacturing and other sectors.

The result is a need to more tightly connect and integrate devices, machines and vehicles with traditional enterprise networks.  This “Industrialization of the Internet,” as Cisco calls it, will accelerate the networking industry beyond the IT and service provider (SP) networks in industries such as manufacturing and transportation.

Any industry analysts interested in more information on Cisco’s innovations for industrial automation, please contact me for details of our upcoming session with Maciej Kranz and the Connected Industries team.  This will include a more detailed overview of this announcement, more background on the Connected Industries business unit and the opportunity for Q&A.

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Cisco IBSG Examines Service Provider Role in Healthcare

In 2011, the amount Americans spent on healthcare equaled nearly 18 percent of the nation’s annual Gross Domestic Product.  This huge amount – more than $2.5 trillion – greatly concerns governments, insurers and medical professionals.  And the pressures on the healthcare system will only grow, as the overall U.S. population ages.

The healthcare debate has spawned many suggestions.  One focus is making the healthcare system more efficient.  Cisco’s Internet Business Solutions Group (IBSG), in a series of projects with key U.S. service providers, explored how they can help enable more efficient delivery of health solutions. 

Details are in an IBSG-produced document titled “Service Providers: A Tourniquet for the Hemorrhaging Healthcare System”.   The paper can be found on the Service Provider Thought Leadership section of the Cisco IBSG website.  At this site, you will find many interesting, provocative papers on various subjects relating to the service provider segment.  

Read More »

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When Mobile and Cloud Collide

The growth of mobility is unprecedented.   Nearly 80 percent of the world’s population now has access to a mobile phone, and new devices are helping enable many more applications and services.

At the same time, cloud has become the new way of delivering—and charging for—IT services and functionality.  Technology services and apps are increasingly being delivered and paid for on demand from remote data centers, accessible through the cloud of interconnected networks that constitute the Internet.

So many applications and services can now be accessed through simple browsers and delivered through the cloud.   Cisco’s Internet Business Solutions Group (IBSG) wanted to know what happens when the hot technology trends—“mobility” and “cloud”— collide.   So IBSG surveyed more than 1,000 U.S. mobile users to understand their current and future needs, and learn how they prefer to pay for mobile cloud services.   The findings help operators understand the size of the opportunity, develop strategies for success, and differentiate their offerings.

For details about this paper and other interesting, provocative papers, go to the Service Provider Thought Leadership page of the IBSG web site.

Check it out . . .

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Cisco Announces Intent to Acquire ClearAccess

Cisco today announced its intent to acquire privately held ClearAccess, a Vancouver, Wash. based company that provides TR-069-based software to service providers for the provisioning and management of residential and mobile devices. This acquisition includes ClearAccess’ software business and talent. The hardware portion of ClearAccess’ business, Smart RG Gateways, will continue forward as SmartRG, Inc. Cisco and ClearAccess’ combined network management and software capabilities will enable service providers to better deliver, manage and monetize their services, while helping to improve operational efficiencies and customer experiences.

For more information, please click here.

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Profiting from the Rise of Wi-Fi

The amount of mobile data generated globally is growing very rapidly and shows no sign of abating. This growth is largely driven by smartphones, tablets and connected devices, as well as mobile applications and content.   The Cisco Visual Networking Index (VNI) has been tracking this for quite some time – the latest update predicts that mobile data traffic will double globally in 2012 and increase by another 78 percent by 2014. 

In addition, there is a corresponding worldwide growth in the popularity of Wi-Fi. The number of Wi-Fi hotspots is expected to reach 2.7 million by 2014, with usage growing 200 percent. This growth is inspired by new enabling devices, recent technology improvements, public and private availability, and tiered mobile data plans from service providers. 

With this in mind, Cisco’s Internet Business Solutions Group (IBSG) has consulted with leading service providers from around the world to develop and evaluate 16 Wi-Fi business models that can provide a reasonable return on investment. Opportunities for monetization fall into four broad categories: (1) business effectiveness, (2) end-user services, (3) inter-carrier wholesale, and (4) value-added services.

For details about this and other interesting, provocative papers, go to the Service Provider Thought Leadership page of the IBSG web site.

Check it out . . .

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