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Setting New Wireless Venue Benchmark at the Fira de Barcelona

For many of us, conferences like Mobile World Congress are places where we learn about the latest technology and industry developments, network with our colleagues, and meet with customers and partners.  During that time, Wi-Fi connectivity is imperative to successfully communicate with other attendees and share the latest news with colleagues back home.

The Fira de Barcelona knows how important connectivity is for their conferences.  Since 1932, the Fira de Barcelona has been one of the most important trade fair institutions in Europe. Every year it organizes and hosts events spanning all aspects of the global business and social calendars.   Hosting global technology shows such as the annual Mobile World Congress means that Fira has to always be familiar with the latest advanced technology. That requirement came sharply into focus in September 2013 with the 49th meeting of the European Association for the Study of Diabetes (EASD). One of the four biggest annual medical conferences in Europe, it draws attendees from over 100 countries.

Fira de Barcelona: Setting New Wireless Venue Benchmark from Cisco Service Provider Mobility

Demand for connectivity at Read More »

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São Paulo International Airport (GRU) Gets Ready for Some Fútebol with Wireless Network Upgrades

This is a customer perspective guest blog contributed by Zack Sterngold, Boingo Wireless Vice President, Americas.

The largest airport in South America, Brazil’s São Paulo-Guarulhos International Airport (GRU), is primed to become one of the world’s most popular destinations. Already an international business hub, Brazil will grow in popularity as a tourist mecca, as travelers flock to the country’s beaches and one of the world’s most beloved sporting events: the World Cup.

To keep pace with the needs of savvy international business travelers and prepare for the fútbol fan onslaught this summer, GRU is upgrading terminals, introducing new traveler services, and working to deliver fast, reliable wireless service to connected passengers. GRU has partnered with Boingo to design and launch a new, state-of-the-art Wi-Fi network from Cisco ahead of the World Cup this summer. The new system will better support international passengers and improve connectivity for all travelers, sports fans and employees throughout the airport.

And travelers are projected to be more connected than ever. A recent study from MMGY Global found that a new category of “Digital Elite” travelers – or those carrying at least two mobile devices – has grown by 600% in just two years to become the new normal. Sports fans don’t leave home without their Read More »

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Marching towards Cloud CDN

Why should you put a virtualized content delivery network (CDN) in the cloud?

This is not just a theoretical question. It has come from our customers. At our recent Cisco Live event in Milan, we demonstrated how our continued CDN technical leadership can answer this question.

First, some history, as you can’t just begin with the cloud.

At Cisco, we’ve been working hard over the years to evolve our Videoscape Distribution Suite (VDS) platform. From its roots in hardware-based appliances, to software applications powered by our data center hardware, and more recently to virtual machine implementations which can be powered by our own or third party hardware. Each technological advance to our VDS platform has netted gains for our customers in their CDN deployments; whether through more flexible deployment from greater hardware independence, faster time-to-market implementing VDS software applications, or reduced total cost of ownership thanks to server-based virtualization that optimizes footprint and power/cooling requirements.

Nonetheless, requirements continue to evolve.

Consumers expect to Read More »

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Unleash the Promise of Cloud: A Strategic Perspective – The Landscape

If you are reading this blog hoping to get a universal recipe for your cloud strategy, I believe you will be disappointed. But then, you already know…. there are no ‘universal’ cloud strategies. You have to formulate a cloud strategy that best fits your business objectives and IT priorities (among a number of other factors.)  Our Cisco services team for Cloud Strategy, Management and Operations has various tools including our Cisco DomainTen™ framework that will help you formulate the right cloud strategy for your organization. Parag’s blog is a great source of information in this regard.

This blog series instead will offer a set of perspectives on how I view the evolution of the World of Many Clouds ™ and what steps we are taking to align our cloud strategy to capitalize on it. This first blog will put our strategy in ‘context’ outlining our point of view in light of some important market dynamics.

The primary market research study that we conducted in collaboration with INTEL, along with additional secondary market research studies, clearly indicate that Line of Business (LoB) leaders have been playing a more important role in driving requirements for IT solutions and services. The reasons behind this trend are many, including and not limited to increasing market and competitive pressures, an uncertain business climate, variability of macroeconomic factors and a relentless need to innovate at a faster pace to stay ahead of the competition.  What’s more, LOBs now have greater ability to access IT solutions – such as Software as a Service – outside the traditional enterprise IT value chain, creating “shadow IT” initiatives. In response, IT organizations are looking for new ways to retain their leadership, control, and at times, even relevancy. Furthermore, IT organizations are now expected to support strategic business objectives and enable business growth while also harnessing new technology trends, leading to innovation and new customer experiences. To remain relevant to the business, IT must become a “change agent” and be perceived as a true strategic enabler. The question is how?

We envision IT organizations transitioning to new roles as trusted ‘brokers of IT services’. This model enables IT to add value to one or more public or private cloud services on behalf of its users. IT does this by dynamically bringing together, integrating, and tailoring the delivery of cloud services to best meet the needs of the business.

In a wide-ranging study, Cisco, in partnership with Intel®, sought to pinpoint just how these powerful trends are impacting IT. The “Impact of Cloud on IT Consumption Models” study surveyed 4,226 IT leaders in 18 industries across nine key economies, developed as well as emerging: Brazil, Canada, China, Germany, India, Mexico, Russia, United Kingdom, and the United States. The study supports our point of view. Up to 76% of the survey respondents signaled that IT will act as a “broker” of cloud services across internal and external clouds for LoBs.

In other words, when formulating their sourcing strategies, IT organizations repeatedly face service-by-service, “build-versus-buy” decisions. Therefore, IT needs a plan and a set of governance criteria that support the consistent evaluation of their IT services sourcing options (e.g., time to market, value, sustainable differentiation that the service can provide, SLAs, cost, risk profile and the experience the IT department intrinsically has with that particular service etc..)

This “IT services sourcing flexibility” enables greater levels of business agility, transparency, and speed of deployment to help LoB leaders unlock innovation and achieve core business objectives.

However, let’s step back and see how this is all fitting together. If we rewind, we introduced the concept of the World of Many Clouds ™ a couple of years ago. You can view the evolution of this world as the outcome of the intersection and progressive integration between traditional IT environments and IT services offered by public cloud providers. The roads (in our metaphor) are converging. Lines are blurring. In theory, nothing is preventing a company that consumes IT services from becoming a cloud provider itself (public or private.)

I also believe that the debate regarding private versus public cloud is over. It is about having both at the same time. And to be able to bridge and take advantage of both; hybrid cloud is the new ‘normal.’

In turn, the ability to combine and dynamically aggregate cloud services from private and public clouds can truly occur if IT organizations can rely on an open and secure hybrid cloud environment. And for that to take place you should have the ability to move your cloud workloads (and more broadly your IT services) around. Both data and applications.

You can easily envision a scenario in which a workload – based on a set of specifications – ‘automatically discovers’ the best infrastructure to run on.  An exchange could facilitate the allocation process. An XML based standard could emerge along with a set of processes used by exchanges to match demand and supply of IT services based on SLAs, costs, data locality requirements etc… On the supply side you can also envision a scenario in which federation or capacity aggregation among suppliers of cloud services would enable increased economies of scale, consistency and a broader set of choices.

Ok … coming back to earth … our Cloud strategy intends to capitalize on some of these market dynamics and enable IT to retain control, relevance and increase its strategic profile by leveraging the evolution of the World of Many Clouds. In my next blog I will provide an overview of the actual strategy and begin focusing on it in more detail. But first I wanted to share the context.

And as always, to learn more you can begin here.

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Cisco VNI Global Mobile Data Forecast Update (2013 – 2018)

Wireless momentum continues worldwide and mobile data traffic expected to increase nearly 11-fold

Today, Cisco released its latest Visual Networking Index (VNI) Global Mobile Forecast, 2013-2018, projecting future mobile data traffic over cellular networks (2G, 3G, or 4G) and wi-fi off-load traffic. Our detailed research, including region-specific and some country-specific data, can be found in our complete white paper. Highlighted below for your convenience are some of the key takeaways.

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