It’s no secret that users demand more in the digital age. This means going beyond brands and proprietary technologies to ensure things work together seamlessly and make people’s lives simpler, faster and easier.

When we announced our partnership with Google Cloud in 2017, we talked about our shared vision of building a truly “open” hybrid cloud. As one of the key areas of our partnership, we’re working on an architecture to bring “the best of both cloud worlds” to enterprise users when it comes to on-premises environments and public cloud.

This April at Google Next in San Francisco, we announced the next phase of our partnership, building on the progress we’ve made so far. Not just in hybrid cloud, but spanning multiple areas, and with ‘open’ being the universal thread.

…but what does open really mean anyway? And why?

Open means choice and freedom for the user, who’s the common denominator in everything we do. In the digital age, everyone is a demanding consumer that wants to move at the speed of light with great user experience:

  • End-customers
  • Internal employees
  • IT operations managers
  • Developers that build the experience

A new open multicloud world

A great example of this is our progress with hybrid cloud and our investments in containerization and Kubernetes. Now, with the Cisco Hybrid Cloud Architecture for Google Cloud’s Anthos, we are expanding our partnership to integrate Google Cloud’s Anthos with Cisco cross-portfolio multicloud technologies such as Cisco HyperFlex, Cisco ACI, Cisco SD-WAN, Cisco Stealthwatch Cloud, Cisco CloudCenter Suite and AppDynamics.

Our mission is to make the modular pieces work together, however without locking users into technology standards or products they don’t need and are not going to use.

The end result is to make the lives of developers and IT infrastructure and operations teams (add security and networking teams to that) simpler. By offering users a consistent experience whether on-premises or in the public cloud when deploying and managing containerized infrastructure based on native Kubernetes and applications.

Finally, we’ve added some of the individual Cisco components that are key ingredients in the solution to the Google Cloud Platform Marketplace, making it easier for users to use.

AI and ML in the mix

We are also working together on Kubeflow, optimizing our on-premises data center portfolio to support the next generation of Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML) applications. This way, IT operations teams can provide a single, powerful infrastructure stack to developers to run AI/ML applications and move them where it makes sense.

Transforming and securing the workplace experience

But what about all the other users, the …non-developer ones, across any vertical, that use Cisco and Google products?

The ones that the brands “Cisco” and “Google” will probably remind them of in their day-to-day office tools. We have arguably two of the most widely-used collaboration software portfolios, so partnering to make them work together makes perfect sense!

To this end, we’ve recently announced native integrations between Cisco Webex and G Suite, such as Webex Meetings with Google Calendar, plus Jabber and Webex Meetings support for Chrome OS and Android, and more. We’ve even introduced voice commands for Google Assistant in Android. Note that Webex is also now available in the G Suite Marketplace.

Google technology is at the heart of a new Contact Center capability, Cisco Answers, a cloud-based “intelligent agent” that’s powered by Google’s Contact Center AI. That’s part of our Contact Center solutions, providing real-time, contextual assistant to agents, empowering them with context, and minimizing the need for manual information searches while assisting customers. We’re also enhancing the current AI capabilities in our Customer Journey Platform with Google AI tools, with the introduction of the Customer Virtual Assistant, an integrated BOT self-service capability to handle simple and specific requests.

Crucially, Cisco is committed to working with Google to make users, applications and data safer than ever before: from end-to-end visibility and threat detection for Google Cloud Platform with Stealthwatch Cloud, to application security with Cloudlock for G Suite domains and integration of Umbrella with Chromebook.

In addition, the free Cisco Duo CRXcavator extension for Chrome means security teams can analyze risks that other 3rd-party Chrome extensions can pose to users and devices.

All these portfolio integrations are aiming to break down industry barriers and make the life of users simpler and more consistent when using their favorite tools.

Connecting the unconnected

At the same time, we’re working with Google to solve bigger problems, such as connecting the world’s unconnected. Google Station, which enables service providers, venues, and governments to provide fast and reliable public Wi-Fi is powered (among others) by Cisco technology.

We’re committed to positively impacting 1 billion lives by 2025. Our work with Google will play a major role in helping us to get there. To find out more about this partnership, visit us at https://www.cisco.com/c/en/us/solutions/global-partners/google-cloud.html.


Kostas Roungeris

Marketing Manager

Cloud Solutions, EMEAR