Application Centric Infrastructure Special Edition
Application Centric Infrastructure Special Edition

It has been just a few short weeks since the Cisco Application Policy Infrastructure Controller (APIC) began shipping, building upon the availability of the Nexus 9000 series and laying the foundation for Application Centric Infrastructure (ACI).  The feedback from early adopters has been quite positive. As of August 13th, 2014 we had over 580 Nexus 9000/ACI customers and over 60 have bought the APIC within just two weeks.  We are highly encouraged by the momentum and are looking to build upon this over the course of our next fiscal year.

Recently, IT leaders have been talking about how software-defined networking (SDN) will usher new levels of business agility into their IT organizations, and it’s clear based on our early results that ACI not only delivers on these expectations but takes a leadership stance in delivering the industry’s best SDN solution.It is therefore a great time for us to take a look at these early adopters, explore and share their motivations for choosing the ACI approach.  Customers are genuinely excited with the open architecture and the flexibility and cost savings they get with a true systems approach and it is pertinent to understand their business challenges, architectural expectations and benefits they hope to receive over time.

To create a forum for these stories, we’ve produced a special edition of Unleashing IT — a publication I’m very excited to share with you as it sheds light on what I truly believe is a transformative innovation.

You’ll learn about early adopters for Nexus 9000 and ACI such as:

  • Marketing analytics firm Acxiom, which got “exactly what we needed” (reduced costs and improved data security) from ACI when bringing public cloud capabilities to its own data center;
  • Computer storage and data management vendor NetApp, which is employing ACI to accelerate productivity at its new global research and development lab; and
  • Information protection software vendor Symantec Corp., which is reducing complexity and increasing security through ACI’s automation features

You’ll also hear from Cisco executives such as Soni Jiandani, SVP of Marketing with the Insieme Networks Business Unit  as she talks about the vision behind the ACI approach.

Industry analyst Zeus Kerravala explains how ACI helps enable the burgeoning DevOps movement, allowing software development and infrastructure operations teams to seamlessly join forces, while Analyst Brad Casemore of IDC assesses Cisco’s own internal ACI implementation.

You’ll learn about how Cisco partners like Puppet Labs (CEO Luke Kanies hit the nail on the head with his description of abstraction and how automation is the key) and Intel were instrumental in helping to create innovative solutions for ACI.

We expect to hear more about the 33 technology ecosystem partners (such as Citrix, F5 and Embrane) that helped deliver ACI and are a big part of this broad architecture. All these vendors are working together with Cisco to deliver on this policy-based framework, and we’ll be sharing their stories going forward.

On behalf of Cisco, I would also like to thank Intel for their ongoing partnership in producing Unleashing IT and for their collaboration on open innovations. Thanks also to several members of the Unleashing IT team and my Cisco colleagues that brought this issue to life in an accelerated manner.

I invite you to download this special ACI edition of Unleashing IT here



Shashi Kiran

Senior Director, Market Management

Data Center, Cloud and Open Networking