A belated Happy New Year from Cisco Live London 2013! This is our last year in London, and it was an excellent sendoff bringing the latest for medianet to our great partners and customers in the European market. With the greater adoption of medianet technologies, we saw the incorporation of medianet features within the general design sessions related to Jabber deployment, to Access Switching, WAN Network Designs  and even a few Management  sessions. (Some of the session links provide a video capture of the session as well as a download of the content)
Meanwhile, the event brought an introduction to Medianet Flow Metadata  as well as Media Services Proxy , which allows the sharing of attributes of flows with the network. The network can then use these attributes for advanced classification, for example, to match the audio leg of a Jabber for Windows session. We had a demo station setup where we showed the quality of metadata-based classification of Jabber video compared to other forms of video that did not benefit from advanced classification. Of course, there were a number of other demo stations showing the network management utilization of medianet features for monitoring and reporting on network performance, namely Performance Monitor  and Mediatrace .
As we start the year, Cisco’s CTO for Australia & New Zealand, Kevin Bloch, shares his thoughts on the trends that are going to shape the networking industry in 2013.
1. “Mobile .. for business” – New directly connected customer channel
Organisations will make significant investments to directly connect and interact with external and internal customers via their mobile devices, as nearly everyone has at least one.
2. “Cloud .. for business” – Big hit on ICT industry
Organisations ‘get’ cloud in 2013 and reorganise (transform) around “as-a-service”. As this happens, IT becomes an operational expense and risk shifts to the provider. This will be a journey and ‘hybrid clouds’ will dominate in 2013. Everyone in the ICT industry will need to adjust.
3. “Analytics .. for (big) business” -- Big Data gets bigger
Businesses actually don’t want IT -- they want to achieve their business goals! However, in order to do so, they need to be able to make fast, smart decisions. The data is available (actually exploding, particularly from smart mobile devices) and technology is now able to make that data useful (“data is the new oil”).
4. “Security .. for business” – IT’s risky
With increased mobile adoption, proliferation of intelligent devices, connectivity and clouds, organisations will increase attention on the means to address vulnerability and business risk. Attacks will focus on the most popular clients – mobile Android devices.
5. “Video .. for business” – More places to see
Video is increasingly permeating business. As mobile devices now exceed desktops, video becomes more accessible, from more places, from more devices.
Video calling is changing the world we live in. Healthcare is using video conferencing to provide services by doctors to patients in rural areas or those too ill to travel. Schools use video calling to enable their students to interact with experts and professionals across the country without having to leave the classroom. And courts are increasingly using video communications for specialized skills, such as language interpretation.
All of these rapid advancements will make a greater impact if our technologies work together. In a recent Cisco study, two-thirds of respondents believe that innovation is what keeps companies growing, that innovation is fostered through interoperable devices, and that it’s better if companies agree to common standards without government intervention. As new technologies are formed, these innovations are the fuel for economic growth and community well-being. It’s important to understand the role that interoperability plays in forming our technological foundation.
Aamer Ahkter, Technical Marketing Engineer from the Cisco Medianet team, recently led an hour-long webinar presentation hosted by ActionPacked! Networks, a Cisco Developer Network (CDN) registered partner. The title of the webinar presentation is “Optimizing Networks for Video, Voice, and Data.”
ActionPacked! Networks has posted the entire one-hour recording of the webinar on YouTube. Those wanting a more detailed overview of Cisco Medianet technologies from a leading Cisco SME should be sure to check out this excellent and insightful presentation.
Increasingly over the past several months, I have been working with more and more retail banking clients. A common theme has emerged during these discussions that centers on video and collaboration in the branch. The top of mind question is, “how are banks using video in the branch to grow top line revenue in a very tightly regulated environment and with ever increasing downward pressure on fee revenues?”
As retail banks have slowly emerged from the global financial crisis of 2008, they are increasingly looking for ways to differentiate themselves with their products and services. Studies show that the branch is still relevant in the eyes of the retail bank consumer, but the role the branch will play in the future is beginning to change.
Cisco’s IBSG team published a white paper on this topic, which covers the transformation that banks are currently going through. Retail banks are wrestling with moving from a multichannel environment to an omnichannel environment. The difference is, instead of offering a different experience and set of products and services across various delivery channels, they offer a more integrated and consistent experience across delivery channels. These traditional delivery channels include: branch, Internet and contact center to name a few. Currently, the mobile channel is growing in popularity and use, especially with new applications like remote deposit capture right from a mobile phone or tablet. Read More »