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Technology as a Strategic Differentiator

Commoditisation is a big word these days in the Service Provider business. The value of our services is being depreciated as our customers are exposed to growing choices offering comparable products. In this borderless economy, competition can come from the most unexpected sources. How are you using technology to give your customers a better experience? A number of ways technology changes the way we do things we do were showcased in the recent Cisco Live events. How would you put those to good use in your businesses?

Cisco Live Melbourne 2015 _ Khaykid

Every morning when I wake up, the first thing that I touch is my mobile phone. Living in Read More »

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Cisco’s Virtualized, Software-Only 4K Encoding Solution: The Secret Ingredient Winning in Customer “Bake-offs” Around the World

If there’s one common element across the major television/video trade shows this year — the International Consumer Electronics Show (CES), the upcoming National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) Show, and likely those that follow, it’s the focus on “the rest of the ecosystem,” as it relates to 4K, Ultra High-Definition (UHD) TV. Meaning, the televisions are out there. Everything else is still catching up.

With NAB coming up, and video picture quality a hot topic, I wanted to highlight what’s been going on with Cisco’s 4K encoder work, as evidenced by customer wins — some of which we can discuss, some of which we can’t — in a series of recent “encoder bake-offs” around the world.

One that we can discuss is our work with India’s Videocon d2h, Read More »

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Increasing Mobile Network Efficiency with Voice over Wi-Fi (VoWi-Fi)

Have you ever walked into the office or perhaps an area in your home with your mobile phone and tried to make a call, only to have poor LTE/4G/3G signal strength keep your call from connecting? What did you do? Well if you’re like me, you probably wanted to throw your phone and revert back to the reliable, old land line. What if, instead of relying on the signal strength of your mobile service provider, you were to make voice calls over your home or office Wi-Fi network?

Mobile phone

Mobile network traffic is growing exponentially, and service providers must manage their networks efficiently to meet Read More »

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Making sense of Service Provider Virtualization

nehib-1Guest blog by Greg Nehib, SP Product and Solutions Marketing

I like to think of virtualization as an expanded networking toolkit, providing us with additional options to get the job done. It’s almost like when cordless tools entered the consumer tool market. You could take the cordless tools anywhere and use them in new and exciting applications. But there was a key drawback that I’m sure you remember. The early cordless tools had a limited effective power range. Over the next decade or two, battery technology improved and there were fewer power related drawbacks to going cordless.

Evolved Programmable Network_SP

A few similarities exist in the network functions virtualization (NFV) space. I Read More »

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How Important are Physical Routers in the move toward Virtualization?

nehib-1Guest blog by Greg Nehib, SP Product and Solutions Marketing

How important are physical routers in the move toward virtualization?

My one word response would be “very”. But the longer version would start with “it depends”.

Here’s the longer version:

It depends on your perspective. I remember when the Cisco 12000 Series GSR was introduced in the late 90’s. It started an arms race that would last for over a decade. The popular comparison at the time was all about who had the biggest router, or “speeds and feeds” as we used to describe them. 2015 offers us a very different networking discussion. People that design and operate networks are more interested in programmability and virtualization (a.k.a. SDN (Software Defined Networks) and NFV(Network Functions Virtualization). From Frederic Trate’s blog on Application Engineered Routing, you can see why this level of control is such an interesting and important place to start the discussion.

I would argue that in terms of talking points, “speeds and feeds” have taken a back seat in network design. After all, a bunch of static ports and traffic-engineered tunnels don’t lead us to the flexibility and scale that we all seek – or can they? Here are some instances where physical routers are still Read More »

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