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The Internet of Everything’s Impact on Hospitality

When a person is considered tech-savvy and “always-connected” in their day-to-day life, these expectations don’t change when they stay in a hotel. In fact, this new “connected hotel guest” actually expects the same mobile experience at hotels that they receive at home or work.  Hoteliers across the world are constantly trying to find ways to meet the increasing needs of the mobile-connected guest. Previously, hotel Wi-Fi was used primarily for guests and staff connectivity, but now, it’s becoming much more than that because of these guests’ needs. Read More »

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Deep-Dive Techwise Technical Workshop: Cisco Connected Mobile Experiences

Next Thursday you don’t want to miss a live technical webcast with Q&A on the hot topic of Wi-Fi location-based services. Join Techwise tech legend Jimmy Ray Purser and technical marketing engineer lead Darryl Sladden for a deep technical discussion covering the ins and outs of Cisco’s Mobility Services Engine – the intelligence engine in the Cisco Wi-Fi network that enables Cisco Connected Mobile Experiences functionality.

You’ll get a full, hands-on view of four pieces of the solution and see how it all ties into your Wi-Fi network:

  • Location detection – how Cisco’s Wi-Fi infrastructure detects mobile devices and calculates their location
  • Analytics – how the MSE aggregates and reports Wi-Fi location data and trends to administrators and operations leads so that they can better understand guest behavior
  • APIs – how Cisco’s Mobility Services APIs provide application developers rich, contextual information they can use to create a variety of internally and externally-facing apps
  • Maps – a use case of how Cisco uses it’s own Wi-Fi location-based services inside the organization to increase efficiency and employees get to where they need to go

This is an in-depth session you won’t want to miss. Register now and mark your calendars for December 12!

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Thinking Outside of the Building

You’ve all heard the saying “think outside the box” when encouraging someone to be creative and come up with new ideas, new ways to do things, new ways to…..just about anything.  Well, I’d like to take a small twist on the well-known saying and talk for a moment on how deploying outdoor Wi-Fi access points should be something you should be “thinking” about.

We all know that here in late 2013 almost everywhere you go, you can pull out your laptop, tablet, or smartphone and you will find Wi-Fi coverage, be it at your workplace, at a coffee shop, or in a retail store.  Why is Wi-Fi coverage so pervasive in these areas?  Because connecting to Wi-Fi access points and the data network behind them makes employees more productive, enables the coffee shop to be the new remote office (while selling more coffee and cakes), and provides the retail store the ability to gather analytics to better target offers for their customers.

Now let’s think about expanding this coverage to outdoors….outside the buildings.  The same holds true.  Providing Wi-Fi access in the surrounding outdoor locations frees up employees to take their laptops outside and enjoy a nice, sunny day while still being “online” for secure corporate email and business tools.  It allows the employee to connect to that important WebEx meeting he is running late for as he pulls into the parking lot. It allows the retail store to engage with customers thru Cisco’s Connected Mobile Experiences (CMX) earlier and push offers to them as they walk in from the parking lot, perhaps pulling customers headed to nearby stores who might otherwise not have stopped in.

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Aironet 1530 Series Outdoor Wireless Access Points: Click to see comparison table

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Cisco CMX at Dreamhack Winter 2013 in Jonkoping Sweden

Dreamhack Winter 2013 in the small city of Jonkoping in central Sweden claims to be the world’s largest digital event. I was skeptical at first, but when I arrived for the event, I was completely amazed at the scale of things in this tiny part of the world where its only bright for 5 or 6 hours during day this time of the year.

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Of course, the amount of daylight didn’t impact one bit the large numbers of people streaming into the event venue well before opening time on Thursday afternoon.

dreamhack2 Read More »

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The Next Generation of Wi-Fi Debuts in Beijing

I recently had the honor to speak at the Wi-Fi Global Congress in Beijing. As evident by the more than 400 people in attendance, the importance and relevance of Wi-Fi continues to grow.  The Wireless Broadband Alliance now has over 100 members, a doubling in less than 2 years.  The membership includes a mix of leading Wi-Fi, mobile, and broadband network operators; global service providers and media players; as well as technology providers and partners.

I took away six key messages from this exciting conference:

  1. Next Generation Hotspots is Alive and Well.  One of the most exciting things at the conference was the launch of the live NGH Experience with China Mobile as the host operator and Cisco as the network infrastructure provider.  Attendees with a Samsung Galaxy or iPhone 5 could experience the first ever opportunity to seamlessly and automatically connect to the venue Wi-Fi.  Participants also received valuable conference information and services seamlessly delivered to their mobile device through NGH.  This is just the beginning.  With 15 major carriers (and growing) signed up to deploy NGH, mobile users throughout the world will be able to experience the next generation of Wi-Fi early in 2014.
  2.  Wi-Fi Roaming is Becoming a Reality.  Several speakers described roaming as being where cellular roaming was 15 to 20 years ago.  However, with the successful launch and upcoming deployment of NGH, seamless roaming amongst carriers is now becoming a reality.  Indeed, the GSM Association recently approved a Wi-Fi Roaming Annex that will make it easy for mobile operators to support this.  As such, the WBA expects roaming to be fully automated across more than 80% of public Wi-Fi networks by 2018.
  3.  Wi-Fi is an Important Part of the Mobile Network.  The world’s largest mobile operator, Read More »

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