The Internet of Things is Here and Now. Looking outside of Cisco you can see this in the many and accelerating IoT companies that have been purchased this year – Google’s acquisition of Nest Labs, Facebook’s acquisition of What’s App, and many more. Internet of things has been around as a term since about 1999, however, its recent popularity is due to a few emerging trends. In the consumer space there’s been wide adoption of connected products such as smart thermostats and intelligent pedometers. In larger organizations, we’ve seen the rise of BYOD and M2M -- both predecessors to IoT.
To further accelerate the transition towards IoT and build the ecosystem, we are once again bringing together the best and brightest who are working on, and using these technologies. That is why, in October 2014, Cisco is hosting the Internet of Things World Forum in Chicago.
Change is accelerating at a speed and scale never seen before, and disruption is constant.
The explosion of network connections among people, process, data, and things, now called the Internet of Everything (IoE), is the driver behind much of this change. It is making innovation more accessible and affordable, while presenting enormous opportunities.
At the same time, IT organizations are contending with significant challenges. Operational costs are rising as budgets fall. Pervasive mobility and an explosion in connected devices are intensifying complexity. Business users are bypassing IT to access cloud-based services while new security threats arise daily. These conditions can stand in the way of greater innovation and agility, and prevent companies from capturing the opportunities in the IoE economy.
The foundational technologies behind IoE — cloud, mobility, collaboration, and analytics — may be disruptive, but they also usher in an era of significant IT improvements. Fully leveraging these opportunities requires an entirely new IT operating model, with new outcomes. IT organizations must become the source of disruptive innovation — and at long last assume the role of transformational business partner. Cisco is calling this new model Fast IT.
Fast IT addresses the following core areas across IT:
Simplifying the infrastructure across silos and driving automation to reduce operational costs
Using strategically automated policy to build agility and intelligence to fuel growth and respond to changing conditions
Connecting the right people to the right information and process at the right time
Evolving security to defend against attacks before and while they happen, and to run analysis after they end
Essentially, Fast IT is an adaptive, policy-driven approach that accommodates today’s and tomorrow’s pace of change. A well-executed strategy will bring together the right resources — which ultimately include infrastructure, applications, data, and people —- at the right time to take advantage of the IoE economy.
One of the key areas in which to create Fast IT is the data center.
In keeping with this approach, Cisco announced today new Unified Computing System (UCS) products and capabilities. UCS is a perfect example of the kind of integrated infrastructure that is eliminating complexity and enabling agility. Its blending of network, compute, and storage provides the foundation for automation and orchestration for physical and virtual systems as one, significantly reducing the management burden on IT.
Greater Automation: UCS Director Express for Big Data enables simplified operations and lower costs
More intelligence at the Edge: the UCS Mini enables computing at the edge, which is essential for leveraging Big Data and data in motion
Improved Agility: UCS is a foundational element of cloud via the Cisco UCS M-Series Modular server. UCS also dovetails seamlessly with Cisco solutions such as ACI and Intercloud, underpinning an overall hybrid-cloud strategy.
In Creating Fast IT, a 20-25 Percent Cost Dividend
Because the pace of change is so dynamic, it is important to examine just where IT stands today. To that end, Cisco Consulting Services (CCS) recently conducted in-depth research.
Cisco surveyed more than 1,400 senior IT leaders in Brazil, Germany, India, the United Kingdom, and the United States. We interviewed leading industry analysts, authors, academics, IT executives, and IT practitioners. We compared this data with conclusions from numerous customer engagements.
A key finding was that implementing the key elements of a Fast IT model could potentially result in a 20 to 25 percent reduction in costs, which can then be reinvested in new capabilities to drive innovation and business outcomes.
Here are key insights from the research. In creating a Fast IT model, organizations will:
simplify operations at a time when complexity is mounting — and IT budgets are flat.
move seamlessly through a “fabric of clouds.” Workloads and infrastructure tasks shift as business (application) conditions warrant.
drive much faster provisioning of enterprise applications. Time to provision and scale can decrease from months to minutes.
build processing capabilities at the edge of the network, capturing “data in motion” for real-time decision-making and contextual insight.
evolve to a more platform-driven security approach in which visibility is improved across all infrastructure domains, devices, applications, and services — enabling protection before, during, and after attacks.
I have no doubt that implementing the elements of a Fast IT model — including Cisco UCS — will help organizations to be more agile and innovative. By moving to a policy-based IT approach, IT can free resources and people to realize the longtime goal of becoming a true partner in driving business outcomes.
In the IoE economy, Fast IT is the way forward.
Join us in the social conversation on Twitter at #FutureOfIT.
****This article has been updated to remove a factoid discussing IoE and manufacturing job growth.****
We have entered the world of the Internet of Everything (IoE)—a world that brings people, data, processes and things together into a vast web of connectivity. From wearable devices that monitor our vital statistics to household appliances that anticipate our needs to smart cars that detect traffic jams and automatically re-route our journeys, the IoE represents an increasingly digital and mobile world that promises to improve our lives.
Twenty-five billion devices will be connected by next year, and that number will grow to 50 billion by 2020. All of this new data that the IoE generates will change the job landscape forever. These are exciting developments with unprecedented potential, but the rapidly expanding IoE requires specialized skill sets that don’t yet exist, resulting in a critical talent gap. Read More »
The Internet of Things continues to add new things daily to a growing list of already connected things; and these “things” have the opportunity to completely change our world. Capabilities like context awareness, increased processing power and energy independence have all been made possible as more people and new types of information are connected. And each day, society gains and learns from these innovations, all a part of the Internet of Everything – a network of networks where billions of connections create unprecedented opportunities as well as new risks.
When it comes to the actual physical devices that are moving the Internet of Everything forward, most think of traditional conduits such as laptops, phones and “wearables.” But, the connections that are creating the Internet of Everything come in forms many may not even consider, from toothbrushes, trashcans, power tools – even entire cities. And while all of these connections amaze with their technology, the value that they create is the real story, for what it means now and for the future of our society.
Much is at stake when discussing the value that the Internet of Things holds. At this year’s CES Conference, it was estimated that the Internet of Things would become a $19 trillion market over the next several years. The number of mobile-connected devices will exceed the world’s population by the end of this year and by 2018, 96 percent of mobile data traffic will originate from these smart devices. The amount of these connections, coupled with reduced technology costs, has created possibilities for the future of the Internet of Things that are seemingly limitless:
Sensors all along the food supply chain, together with Big Data analytics and the intelligence of the cloud, will help us optimize the delivery of food from “farm to fork.” Sensors in the field will be combined with weather forecasts and other data to trigger irrigation and harvest times for each crop. And sensors on the food itself will alert merchants and consumers about when the “sell by” and “use by” dates are approaching to prevent spoilage. All of this will significantly reduce food waste—which today amounts to about one-third of total world food production.
A blue-tooth connected toothbrush that connects to a smartphone app is just one of the many devices on the market that promote a better quality of life through improved healthcare. Wearable technology like fitness trackers, health monitors, insulin pumps and even “smart” clothing can measure consumed calories, heart rates, the amount of medicine in a person’s body and transmit that data to patients and medical professionals in real-time. And 71% of Americans claim these types of devices have improved their overall health.
The city of the future will be “smarter” as sensors turn street lights, waste receptacles and cameras into tools that will help municipalities operate on more efficient levels. Wim Elfrink outlined how Barcelona has used a network of sensors that transmit real-time data on temperature, noise and other conditions in one of the city’s most popular areas. Kansas City, Missouri has used the network of street lighting and interactive digital kiosks in conjunction with a $114 million streetcar project to promote the city to both residents, and companies potentially looking to relocate their operations.
Serving as a link to the Internet of Everything, all of the connected things that make up the fabric of the Internet of Things are leading to new economic opportunities, increased personalized connections and more importantly, positive intersections of technology and the human experience. Far beyond the monetary values that it can present to society, the Internet of Things is powerfully changing and improving quality of life for people across the globe, with billions of opportunities awaiting us all.
What impact has the Internet of Everything had on your life, professionally or personally? Thinking futuristically, in what ways can you dream of that use the Internet of Things and the Internet of Everything to change our world?
We want to know what examples of the Internet of Everything you see in your own City of Tomorrow – your neighborhood! Join the conversation online by tagging your photo and video examples with #InternetofEverything and #CityofTomorrow. How is the Internet of Everything changing your city?
Last week we kicked off our first #IoTChat! The topic was also the theme for this year’s Internet of Things World Forum, and the overall theme we’ll be embracing for this quarter: IoT is Here, IoT is Now with the implied: (and what does that mean?)
Here are three simple steps to join tomorrow’s #IoTChat: