Cisco Blogs

Cisco Blog > Enterprise Networks

Your Right to Choose Your WAN Connectivity and Your Right to Security

Still too often, nowadays, I look at my phone and my stomach drops.

I see: “3G”…

Even worse, I see: “1x”…

I think to myself: It’s the year 2015 and the world is becoming increasingly digitized. IDC’s Internet of Things Forecast states that there will be 4 billion people using 50 billion devices all in one hyper-connected world. I (along with 3,999,999,999 other people) believe it is my right to always have a consistent and high-performing 4G-LTE connection.

For the enterprise, Cisco’s SD-WAN Bill of Rights talks about what customers should expect and demand as they prepare their WAN for tomorrow. Among these rights are two that are very important to branch security in particular: Read More »

Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Connecting Schools and Students Via Smart Policy

Around the world, over 57 million children of primary school age do not have access to quality education and over 250 million children cannot read or write by the time they reach grade four. In addition, the International Telecommunications Union (ITU) of the United Nations estimates that over 4 billion people have yet to connect to the Internet and the positive economic and social benefits that it enables. With dedicated effort, national policy programs can tackle these twin social challenges simultaneously.

Highlighting a path forward, today Cisco is launching a new report, School Connectivity for the 21st Century, which explores the various national initiatives of five countries that have achieved near universal school Internet connectivity. The report assesses the different government policies and programs that have been successful in extending Internet connectivity to primary and secondary schools in Ireland, New Zealand, Portugal, Uruguay, and the United States. Collectively, the case studies demonstrate that broadband Internet connectivity, as a complement to educational programs, improves outcomes and equips students with the skills necessary to live, work, and thrive in our increasingly digital world.

Most countries around the world have some sort of school connectivity program. Unfortunately, though, connection speeds are often slow and connectivity rarely extends past the front office and into classrooms. While some countries may be connecting schools, they may not be connecting teachers and students to the global learning community.

Effective implementation of public policy not only connects more students to the Internet, but also facilitates real improvements to educational outcomes. The report finds that:

  • Broadband technology is an essential component in the iterative process of enhancing student achievement;
  • Dedicated national school connectivity programs can successfully extend Internet access to the majority of a country’s schools within only four or five years;
  • A range of funding mechanisms can be utilized to support school connectivity, from universal service funds to public-private partnership models; and
  • The amount of connectivity within a school (i.e., the local area networks, LAN) is just as important as the amount of connectivity provided to the school.

Given these findings, we recommend that policy leaders focus on broadband Internet and ICT adoption within schools to accelerate the positive impact of technology on education. The report highlights ‘good practices’ in comprehensive national school connectivity programs. These include: a high level vision; a detailed plan with targets; secure and recurring funding; a comprehensive focus on technology requirements; an emphasis on the development and integration of relevant educational content tailored to the learning environment; concurrent training for educators; and regular monitoring and evaluation of the program.


Several technological aspects of school connectivity programs work in concert to ensure that a
robust system is available for students and educators, namely: bandwidth to the school, within-school connectivity, district-wide access, and complementary hardware and software. The experience of the programs reviewed here demonstrates that, over time, per-student bandwidth needs are regularly updated and
that local area networks (LANs), which provide connectivity within schools, are essential not only to extend connectivity throughout the campus, but also to achieve real outcomes by supporting collaboration and access to resources for every student and educator.

As Horace Mann, a pioneer in education reform in the 19th century, once said, “education, beyond all other devices of human origin, is a great equalizer of the conditions of men – the balance wheel of the social machinery.” Today, nearly two centuries later, let us apply the lessons of history to lingering global challenges by extending educational opportunities – as well as Internet access – to all.

Tags: , , , , ,

Creating A Scalable WiFi Experience Across the Country

Julia SlocombeGuest blog written by, Julia Slocombe, Vice President of Operations, Western Region at Smart City Networks

Providing dependable wireless communication in the convention industry requires a combination of artful networking design, hardware strength from top-of-the-line equipment, and execution from skilled technicians and administrators. With the partnership of Cisco, the Smart City Networks team has been able to do just that for the more than 35 convention and meeting facilities we service across the country.

Over the past two years, the Santa Clara Convention Center (SCCC) has played host to over one thousand events, with each event seeking seamless connectivity and robust Wi-Fi bandwidth to support a myriad of mobile devices. By relying on the vast industry knowledge of our on-site Smart City Networks leads and the hardware reliability of Cisco, the SCCC can satisfy the WiFi demands of their attendees. Through Smart City’s implementation of a dynamic, scalable wireless network, the SCCC is capable of meeting the needs of all attendees, from 10 to 100,000.

Smart City manages hundreds of access points at the SCCC facility Read More »

Tags: , , , , , , , ,

APAC leads Global mobile trends

The annual Cisco® Visual Networking Index (VNI) Global Mobile Data Forecast, just out, once again shows the phenomenal growth expected in the mobile industry, e.g. more than 5.2 billion global mobile users by 2019 and 10-fold mobile traffic growth over the next five years. See Thomas Barnett’s blog to learn more.

For me the interest is to look into the APAC specific trends and the unique characteristics of this very diverse region. APAC averages show trends similar to the Global view, but let’s compare super developed Japan with the developing markets in Indonesia and India also:

Cisco VNI Mobile Data APAC Statistics for 2014

Cisco VNI Mobile Data APAC Statistics for 2014

Some observations on demand; Developed markets are already dominated by smart devices and their large data consumption, but driven by new connections (multiple devices per user and M2M(machine 2 machine)) demand still grows. Developing markets are still migrating Read More »

Tags: , , , , , , , ,

RST Fiber’s High-speed Network powered by Cisco’s Evolved Programmable Network

ginaBy Gina Nienaber, Marketing Manager

We’ve been discussing the Evolved Programmable Network for some time now, knowing the transition from an IP NGN to an EPN is not something that will happen overnight (See EPN Blogs 1 , 2, 3). The Cisco® Evolved Programmable Network (EPN), represents an idea, an end-to-end unification of network, storage, and compute elements, and a lofty concept for existing multivendor networks to aspire to. New entrants into the communications industry are capitalizing on this period of evolution by building homogeneous end-to-end networks purpose built for SDN and NFV innovation.

One recent entrant is RST Fiber, based in North Carolina. Earlier in the year, Cisco and RST announced their 100 Gbps network deployment covering over 3000 miles throughout North Carolina with plans to Read More »

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , ,