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Reflections on Mobile World Congress 2015: Transformation Through Innovation

As I reflected on a very memorable Mobile World Congress 2015 during the plane ride home from Barcelona a few days ago, it became clear that the transformation Cisco has been seeing in the telecommunications service provider industry is now a global movement.

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It’s not just happening in Europe, or Latin America, or Asia. It’s quite literally everywhere.

“Transformation through Innovation” was Cisco’s theme for this year’s Mobile World Congress, and at heart of our service provider strategy. It’s quite clear we’re onto something.

In countless conversations last week with leaders of forward-thinking global service providers in Barcelona, I heard two familiar themes over and over again –“Transformation and Innovation.” They’re all seeking to transform their architectures and businesses – and ultimately their customers’ experiences – to capture new opportunities in the Internet of Everything (IoE) era. In fact, the IoE – the networked connection of people, processes, data and things – is expected to create a $1.7 trillion market opportunity for service providers over the next decade.

With large networks that deliver mobile, video, collaboration, and other offerings to individual subscribers and businesses of all sizes, service providers are in an enviable position, sitting at the center of the IoE. They alone have the unique opportunity to take advantage of all kinds of new IoE connection types, and integrating them to deliver rich new applications, services and experiences.

What a truly exciting time to be in this industry!

That said, existing operational complexity can stifle service providers’ abilities to reduce costs and become more agile in bringing new capabilities to market. The reality is, today most new applications and services take months to roll out. If this pace does not rapidly accelerate, the entire industry will be left behind.

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What Users Want

For most users, the network is as mysterious as what’s under the hood of their car.  When the engine starts to sputter, the average driver has no idea of whether there’s a problem with the carburetor or injection system.  They just want their car to work.

It’s the same with networks for many organizations.  Users don’t want to get bogged down in the details of network performance and efficiency.  What they care about is reliability, performance, and responsiveness at the level they work at: the application level.

This trend is leading to changes in how service providers guarantee service.  Today, Service Level Agreements (SLAs) offer assurance of network availability and reliability.  As more organizations move to cloud, these SLAs will evolve towards application-level guarantees.  Uptime will be defined not just in terms of network access but also how consistently applications are delivered.

The beginning of this trend can be seen through cloud providers like Vodafone.  In “Optimizing Your Network and Applications” Vodafone describes how it is leading the industry by offering its Cisco Powered iWANaaS with integrated Application Visibility and Control (AVC) technology. Read More »

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Cisco Partner Weekly Rewind – February 13, 2015

Partner-Weekly-Rewind-v2Each week, we’ll highlight the most important Cisco Partner Ecosystem news and stories, as well as point you to important, Cisco-related partner content you may have missed along the way. Here’s what you might have missed this week:

Off the Top

Value Incentive Program (VIP) 25 has launched and Robb Berger stopped by the Partner Blog this week for an update. Interested in the latest changes to VIP’s structure? Check out Robb’s blog for an overview, and then head over to Partner Central on for a deep dive. (Please note: All partner links to VIP information require a partner login.)

Innovating Beyond Technology

Xander Uyleman blogged this week on how Cisco partner Vodafone has added value to its Cisco Powered Unified Communications service with its unique pricing model. It is an interesting look at innovation in the cloud, and it’s a short, easy read. Check it out and let us know what you think!

Internet of Everything (IoE) Campaign

There is a $19 trillion opportunity in IoE. Claim your share by connecting the unconnected! Check out this campaign in order to share your story and access marketing resources to start conversations about IoE. Read More »

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Innovating Beyond Technology

When people talk about innovation, they typically refer to the underlying technology and its benefits to users.  For example, articles on innovation in the cloud often describe the new features and applications organizations can now access and the ways these will transform how they do they business.

Innovation, however, can go far beyond technology.  Sometimes, how technology is delivered is as important as the technology itself.  There can even be innovation in how a customer pays for services.

In their blog “How Predictable is the Cost of Your Cloud?” Cisco partner Vodafone describes how it has added value to its Cisco Powered Unified Communications service offering through their unique pricing model.

According to Vodafone, one of the benefits of unifying an organization’s communications is the ability for users to work where they want.  For many users, this means they can stay connected even when traveling in other countries. Read More »

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What’s In Your Network? And What Are You Going to DO About it? Call Vodafone!

Network customers have always bought networks for one and only one reason: to run their applications over them.  Yet for most of that time, those networks have been largely oblivious to the composition of the network traffic they carried.  Traditional network tools could tell you whether your network was having a lot of errors, or whether a given link or interface was congested, but they couldn’t tell you what was congesting your network, beyond the limited granularity of a few well-known ports.  Finding out that you’ve got a lot of HTTP or HTTPS is not very helpful in finding out whether you’re swamped by personal traffic that needs to be controlled, or by legitimate business traffic that requires an increase in effective bandwidth.

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