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Endpoint Management: The system that allows you to speak everyone’s language

Imagine standing in front of a crowd constituting a random cross-sample of the world population. You want to convey a single message that everyone can understand – but will your audience understand your language? Some might, but certainly not all. Some would pick up your message right away, others would have no idea what you wanted. And would you understand them? What if they had urgent information to transmit? What if they needed help but didn’t know how to convey their needs to you? Read More »

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Policy and Resource Management – The Traffic Police of Video Services

Operators like to provide their subscribers plenty of services. It’s how they win loyalty and differentiate themselves from the competition. They want to offer HD channels and Video on Demand (VOD), they want to optimize delivery by means of Switched Digital Video (SDV) and Adaptive Bitrate (ABR), and of course they want to ensure that all these video services are available on a wide range of devices.

Here’s the problem: each of these services has evolved and rolled out piecemeal over the years. Not only does each service require its own Session and Resource Management (SRM) tool to manage it, but each service is also processed differently per device, thanks to device manufacturers sticking with proprietary protocols. In short, siloed SRMs make scalability unwieldy, driving up Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) and sowing Quality of Service chaos when traffic surges hit. Picture a traffic light out at a busy intersection at rush hour with no policeman to direct traffic: Read More »

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Multi-Device Data Plans: A Distinction without a Difference?

In this continuing series about Mobile Services Monetization, let’s look at so-called Multi-Device Data Plans. Spurred by the adoption of the Apple iPad and Android tablets, many operators have introduced mobile data plans that encourage users to connect these devices to 3G and LTE networks, rather then relying solely on Wi-Fi. These Multi-Device Data plans offer subscribers the ability to have a single contract that allows use of more than one device against a single monthly data usage quota. This provides users convenience, value, and incentives to buy cellular-enabled tablets and other “secondary devices”. Further, these Multi-Device Data Plan have driven higher data use and pushed users to increase to higher-tiered data quotas, according to some operators.

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Trying to stand out among U.S. operators, T-Mobile recently announced that for a fee of $10/month, it will allow subscribers to add a tablet to an existing smartphone subscription *and* get a tablet data quota equal to the quota they have signed up for with their smartphone. So for only $10, this Read More »

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The Agile (r)Evolution – Mobile Heads to the Cloud

Co-Authored by Ian Hood, Senior Manager, Service Provider Architecture & Dan Kurschner, Senior Manager, Service Provider Mobility

Business Challenge:  Everything Goes Mobile

The dynamic state of the business of service providers is quite apparent these days, and perhaps this is most evident for the mobility providers as everyone and everything goes mobile.  All of their consumers, be they individual or business, are clamoring for new capabilities that can automate their business and simplify their lives.  In addition there is a new class (or breed) of consumer – “Things”.  Whether it is the connected car, city, bus, or kitchen appliances, “Things” are increasingly using the mobile network.  Many of these new services and applications are readily available from “Over the Top” (OTT) providers that do not necessarily have any network upon which to deliver them. The OTT business model is designed for service creation agility, leaving it up to the operators to provide network access, quality of experience, and service assurance while managing the exploding demands for bandwidth and spectrum. Read More »

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Cisco SPotlight Series – Connected Devices in the Connected Home

chowj-300x4001By Joe Chow, VP & GM, Connected Devices Business Unit, Cisco

Our home entertainment centers are rapidly changing. For decades, the television has been the center of American living room, but with the advent of cable, video games, streaming services and the cloud, our definitions of TV and set-top boxes have evolved. These days, a cellphone can be remote control and a remote control can be a security system. Consumers can watch movies on-demand or access second-screen content with their tablets or they can check their Facebook over their TV sets. Meanwhile society demands are expanding to include environmental concerns as well greater efficiencies.

To address many of the questions of the changing market, Cisco is launching a new video SPotlight series. Through the course of several videos, key Cisco executives will answer questions and provide commentary on many of the hottest topics in television and video.

In the inaugural video, Read More »

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