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Connected Shoppers: Cisco CTO Bob Friday at NRF

Mobile devices have gone mainstream, and shoppers have become to rely on smart phones for their primary source of information while making a purchase decision. Bob Friday, Cisco CTO in the Wireless Networking Group, presents on connecting shoppers through mobility and shares highlights from his Big Ideas session at the National Retail Conference in January.

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Geeking out with Techwise TV: Cisco Unified Access

It’s been revealed: Best-in-class wired and wireless networks are now married into One Network. 

The last component of our Unified Access platform, one network joins one policy and one management to create a strong, intelligent platform to help IT and the business meet the challenges of a connected world. Tech megatrends such as BYOD and the Internet of Everything aren’t so scary when you have unified policy to mitigate risks, unified management to handle network administration, and unified network to support all those devices pouring into the workplace.

Join our favorite geeks Robb Boyd and Jimmy Rae Purser as they take us on a comprehensive overview of what Unified Access offers by dissecting the unified solution into one policy, one management, one network.

How to get the most out of CiscoLive! London

Just a few more hours until CiscoLive! London kicks off! We’ve got some great talks, challenges (competition where you can win a variety of prizes), and new solutions being launched.  In Lauren’s Borderless blog, she highlights a few of the activities and events that will be the most fun/cool/educational/tasty.

<SIDENOTE:> If you’re skipping CiscoLive then you’ll want to head right over to register for our live webcast, “Get Your Network Ready for BYOD with Cisco Unified Access” on January 29.  You’ll also want to start hanging out at the Cisco Borderless Networks community where we’ll have a Q&A and we have a bunch of upcoming events and fun. </SIDENOTE>

Here’re a few of the main bullets from the Borderless Blog that you don’t want to miss:

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If You Got A Controller DownTime Problem Yo I’ll Solve It…with Stateful SwitchOver

Do you have to deal with re-authentication when your wireless internet connection drops? Isn’t it annoying when you have to deal with minutes seconds of failover?

You may be suffering from downtime resulting from your primary controller going down.

Symptoms include: network downtime, poor quality of experience for users, and major headache for IT. This is because when the controller goes down, the access point has to rebuild the CAPWAP tunnel completely from scratch, rebuild all channel and power settings on the Access Points, resulting in the users having to reauthenticate and lose all data from the previous connection. This can be annoying for users, which in turn puts pressure on IT.

Luckily for you, Cisco has Stateful SwitchOver for Wireless!

Cisco Stateful SwitchOver solves all the problems of controller fail-over downtime with its innovative setup of a secondary stand-by controller that holds a replica copy of all the data being exchanged between the access point and the controller. This means that when the primary controller fails, there is a sub-second (yes, less than one-second) switchover for hundreds of Access Points to the secondary controller AND a seamless user experience! Sound too good to be true? It’s not.

Check out this short 2 minute video on the basics of SSO:

For more information, check out Cisco Stateful SwitchOver

Reflections from the Floor at NRF 2013

panoramaAfter a long day of showing the Cisco BYOD Smart Solution and Cisco Connected Mobile Experiences solutions at the 2013 National Retail Federation (NRF) trade show, I am waiting for a colleague to meet me for a well-deserved dinner. I had many, and yes there were MANY, conversations with Retail IT professionals,  and nearly every conversation I had seemed to revolve around the same two problems:

  1. How do I allow employees and / or customers to access the network when I don’t have dedicated local IT support?
  2. How do I give up the control and make sure my security and compliance requirements are met?

We know almost all organizations are struggling with BYOD, but it’s now clear that the lack of local IT support adds a new dimension to the problem. With the increased adoption of mobility, there’s also the added complexity of security and compliance, and with all the connected consumers walking around, it’s becoming a growing concern in the retail space. Retail organizations want to take advantage of the promise that leveraging Wi-Fi access to engage with employees and customers, but fear the management and security of such services.

Fortunately, Cisco is addressing both these issues with its mobility solutions.

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