Cisco Blogs

Cisco Blog > Internet of Everything

From Connected Devices to Smart Services: The Real Value of IoT

If you follow me on Twitter (@rowantrollope) you might have followed along this past Christmas as, home with the family, I started writing some code and building some hardware devices to connect more of the things around my house. After all, these days anything can be a smart device; from a toaster that delivers perfectly browned slices to a Christmas tree that automatically waters itself, the ideas are endless.

As a hacker at home, writing some simple code or building a connected hardware device is easy with today’s software and hardware platforms. But moving from a side project at home to building a business is quite another matter. How do you collect and analyze data from these connected devices, scale to manage more and more connected devices, and eventually find a way to monetize your connected devices? In other words, how do you turn a good idea into a great IoT business?

That’s why I’m so excited by yesterday’s news about our intent to acquire Jasper. Jasper’s approach is unique because it is so simple – they manage connectivity of IoT services for any device, from connected cars to connected printers, all through the cloud. It’s not just about connecting devices, but helping our customers to collect data, act on that data and deliver services to their end customers based on that data. Read More »

Tags: , , , , ,

Cisco Live Berlin 2016 Pre-Event Perspective

This year’s Cisco Live event in Berlin (Feb 15th – 19th) is the first time visiting the historical city to host our eagerly anticipated customer and partner event. It also happens to be the first time I have traveled to Germany. With the event fast approaching the excitement around the office is suitably building as are my personal nerves for such an important event.

I am fortunate enough to attend Berlin as my second Cisco Live event after attending Milan in 2013 as a Millennial in the IT Management track. I was amazed at the content shared from Cisco and partners as well as the on-going participation from within the room. This year I will be joining a strong Cisco IT team on our booth within the World of Solutions, with an excellent opportunity to engage directly with our customers. These interactions will share how we are leveraging our own technology to support Cisco’s growing business. The floor is very atmospheric with thousands of technology enthusiasts and I cannot wait.

Intelligent Proximity on Collaboration Devices, Connected Lighting, Smart Spaces, Internet of Things, Security and Application Centric Infrastructure are just some of the experiences awaiting for you on the IT booth. These insights supply a handful of the information available at the entire event.

Tags: , , , , ,

Driving Business Outcomes with the Second Wave of Cloud Adoption

Do you remember when cloud services first emerged? Driving operational efficiency was the name of the game – specifically reducing IT costs. Now, as organizations continue to innovate themselves, many are expecting their cloud services to be instrumental in digitization efforts that can improve business growth and drive innovation.

A Cisco-sponsored IDC survey revealed that a second wave of cloud adoption is emerging. Companies now have higher expectations and view cloud as a way to drive innovation and revenue growth. The first wave of cloud was primarily tied to operational efficiency and that is no longer the case. This next wave of Cloud adoption is driving more EFFICIENCY, it is increasing IT SPEED and it is enabling new and DISRUPTIVE applications.

First Image BCA Blog

For those companies which have been able to optimize their cloud strategies the results are extremely positive across a number of key performance indicators (or KPIs.) But there is room for improvement since only 1% of organizations are getting the most out of their cloud strategies (or have in place optimized cloud strategies).

Third Image Cisco BCA Blog

As private and public cloud adoption continue to increase, the opportunities for Cisco to help our customers get the most out of their cloud deployments also will continue to grow. How can companies proceed in developing a cloud strategy that will help them take advantage of this second wave of cloud innovation? And what are the business benefits of doing so?

We worked with IDC to make all this research actionable for our customers and help organizations define their own cloud strategy. The Cisco Business Cloud Advisor (BCA) framework in addition (first and foremost) to our Cloud portfolio will allow us to help you derive more value from your cloud deployments. Cisco offers innovative private/hybrid cloud solutions (build your own or as a service) and with our partner ecosystem we can help organizations embrace the cloud with confidence while accelerating deployment times and business impact.


BCA Blog Second Image

In the quest for efficiency, IT organizations have already invested in consolidation and virtualization. They next area of focus to drive efficiencies now is automation, meaning the ability to simplify and bring consistency to provisioning, improve workflows, and accelerate IT services lifecycles.  And while automation’s sweet spot may start with efficiency, its function and impact needs to continually extend and evolve beyond the data center as we expand our playing field into cloud and to the edge of the network and IoT.

When it comes to speed, it’s a matter of delivering on the needs of stakeholders (such as LOB leaders and developers) in a timely fashion to help them stay ahead of market disruptions and capitalize on new opportunities faster. This requires support for flexible consumption models to deliver new IT and business services, whether sourced internally or externally via the cloud.

And when it comes to digital disruption, the next wave of market disruption is coming from IoT applications and goes well beyond big data and enabling M2M communication. It requires a radically different shift in what we consider the traditional boundaries of IT organizations. With the right IT capabilities, information from the IoT can be turned into actions quickly, creating new and disruptive capabilities, richer and innovative experiences, and unprecedented economic opportunities.

And finally, with the considerable complexity of today’s IT environment, especially when that environment includes public cloud resources, it’s critical to ensure security is pervasive across the extended network.

So at a minimum, you need automation, support for flexible consumption models, edge/IoT applications, and security to make this combination of efficiency, speed, and disruption a reality while extracting the most value out of your cloud services.

So the question now is … where are you in the journey? Take a quick assessment to preview the possibilities and engage with our Cisco Team and our Partners to begin a much deeper conversation during a BCA workshop.

Additional Resources:





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

IoT: Using Technology for the Developing World

As we enter 2016, I can’t help but reflect on the staggering success and take up of the Internet of Things (IoT), which refers to any device able to connect to the Internet. Mobile penetration is booming, broadband access continues to soar, more and more devices are being developed with sensors and wireless capability built in, while the cost of the technology and connectivity continues to plummet.

All of these factors are driving the vast appetite for the IoT, translating into new business models, increased productivity, growing prosperity and new opportunities.

The IoT after all is one of the defining and transformative technologies of our time. Yet, while it is already making huge efficiency and productivity gains in the industrialized world, we cannot overlook the potential for even greater and more significant impact in the developing world.

With over 700 million people or 9.6% of the world’s population living in extreme poverty (below USD $ 1.90 per day) it’s hard not to see the imperative. The ability to impact millions, if not billions, of lives for the better is within our grasp and is an opportunity we can’t afford to miss. This is why Cisco and the ITU have contributed to a discussion and new joint report, Harnessing the Internet of Things for Global Development for the UN Broadband Commission for Sustainable Development.

Simple sensors save lives.

For example, IoT devices are improving sanitation for local communities and increasing efficiency and ensuring greater operating up time by monitoring critical water, sanitation and health equipment. And in Kenya, connected sensors monitor and automatically report faulty refrigerators in medical centers to ensure medicines do not go off and that replacement parts are directed to needy facilities in the shortest possible time – saving lives and resources while reducing cost for those combating life threatening diseases.

So how do we grasp one of the most important technological evolutions of our time for the developing world, and ensure we do not create a new digital divide?

It’s easier than we may think: there is no vast mountain to climb, no great chasm to cross, no global money pot to tap and no great unknown infrastructure to invent and build. The elements required mostly already exist.

The developed world’s demand for IoT technologies and connectivity means that IoT devices are now readily available, affordable and scalable for the developing world: providing the perfect platform to kick start emerging economies and provide much improved quality of life.

IoT R&D costs have been, and continue to be, borne by a hungry developed world market and there is little effort in “tweaking” IoT devices for the developing world. In fact, IoT devices are increasingly common, affordable and easy replaceable making them a de facto new commodity. And, complex new infrastructure is not immediately required or necessary for developing markets as a core infrastructure is readily available and provides a digital backbone to build upon – 95% of the world’s population has 2G coverage and 65% 3G coverage.

Interconnectedness is ultimately the key to increased usage and benefits. Fortunately, interoperability between devices is increasing, making operating and synchronizing a variety of “incompatible” devices possible and practical.

As for scalability, IoT devices are designed to be scalable. Many devices are now simple Plug & Play, making them easy to install and maintain. Reduced and alternate power supplies, like solar, wind and even changes in environmental factors such as moisture, can maintain sensors and networks where there is no consistent electricity supply, making them ideal for locations with irregular or unavailable grid power.

So the elements for a hyper connected IoT environment are here to be built upon – but without the proper foundation they may be unable to take hold and thrive. That’s where forward thinking governments can help. The markets have developed the technology and absorbed initial device costs; it’s now time for government policies supporting private sector initiatives, innovation and investment for the developing world.

In this regard, there are three key elements to achieving global success and delivering on the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) mandate of a world without poverty.

First, we must act now. As was the case with voice telephony and the Internet, we run the risk of creating a new digital divide with IoT. This is avoidable if we move quickly. The elements are in place for us to create an environment where all economies and societies benefit from a truly IoT interconnected world. We cannot take this for granted. Let’s embrace it. I urge leaders in the developing world to seize the opportunity and, working with the private sector, prioritize a digital future for their nations and ensure the IoT takes root and thrives.

Second, invest early. Make necessary spectrum available to connect the wide range of diverse IoT devices. Encourage industry to develop, adopt, and use global standards that will enable interoperable and lower cost devices. Support the investment in the infrastructure necessary for local data centers such as reliable and quality electricity, skilled labor and, where necessary, incentives for investment.   And, support and foster global data flow among data centers to take advantage of scale, reliability and lower costs. By increasing the spectrum available to accommodate the increased traffic and connectivity and encouraging next generation data centers, countries can position themselves to take full advantage, both now and in the future, of the exponential growth in devices and data.

Finally, create, build and maintain trust. Without the belief that data is secure and will benefit all users, citizens, companies and the public sector, adoption and use of IoT will be slowed. Governments can mitigate this risk by engaging early with the private sector to foster the development and implementation of robust security technologies to keep data safe, networks secure and users reassured.

The world has a unique opportunity to raise the quality of life for millions, if not billions of people across the developing world and short circuit a new digital divide. The key is to accelerate the development and deployment of IoT across the developing world.

Tags: , , ,

Enabling IoT Analytics

Last month, at Cisco’s Internet of Things (IoT) World Forum in Dubai, I had the opportunity to lead a panel discussion on IoT Analytics with a group of my industry peers – each who play a different role within the space. Together, we discussed the unique opportunities and challenges of doing analytics in an IoT environment, as well as what the future holds.

During our panel, a key theme really stood out. The IoT is an area in which there is an impressive amount of industry collaboration among customers and vendors. There isn’t one vendor who can address all IoT challenges with one solution. This is exactly why events like IoT World Forum are so valuable. It brings together collective thinkers in an effort to address collective challenges.

IoT is a great example of a hyper-distributed data environment, meaning that massive amounts of data are being created and in very distributed way. In these types of environments, challenges arise with collecting, storing and analyzing data that can’t be solved with traditional solutions that rely on data to be in a central location before it can be used to derive meaningful insight. To do this in an IoT environment the strategy needs to be reverse engineered; it requires a new approach and the capability to capture, store and analyze data in the place where it is actively created.

Read More »

Tags: , ,