Enterprise Networks: What’s the Attraction with Abstraction?
If you have ever been to a large resort, you may find yourself amazed at the number of restaurants, clubs and shops that are on the property. On the other hand you may find yourself constantly wandering around the property to find a particular place you had in mind or having to stop at every directory kiosk on the way to make sure you weren’t lost. What if there was a better way?
With the Cisco ONE Enterprise Networks Architecture the control layer can abstract information from the network infrastructure. But what does this mean from the perspective of delivering a better end-user experience or even helping in driving business? Let’s look at an example of how the network infrastructure is helping drive change in the hospitality industry.
MGM Resorts has found a way to abstract data from their Cisco network infrastructure to help deliver a better guest experience when at the Bellagio Las Vegas.
In this example the Cisco Wireless Access Points and Cisco Wireless LAN Controllers serve as the devices in the Network Elements Layer that detect the end-user devices and connects them to the network. The Cisco Mobility Services Engine, in the Control Layer, is the “brains” of the Wi-Fi network, abstracting contextual information, such as opt-in presence identity, indoor location gathered from access point triangulation, and dwell time. A custom location-aware application, within the Network Aware Application Layer, uses the contextual information and seamless connectivity to the network infrastructure to deliver location-based services to the end user.
This contextual information gathered (via opt-in) can be used in a number of ways :
- Resort guests could get turn-by-turn directions through an app using indoor location services, so they’d know where they are and how to get to the location they want, in real-time.
- They could also receive personalized, targeted messages based on their current location using targeted location-based analysis to alert them to special deals at nearby shops or that night’s special at a nearby restaurant.
- App integration with other hotel systems can allow the resort to deliver special promotions to guests enrolled in loyalty programs.
- Custom browser-based menu items, clickable icons, and opt-in banners can provide information based on where the guest is just by opening their mobile browser (without an app)
There are also operational business benefits to abstracting data from the network elements:
- Advanced analytics from tracking devices provides visibility and analytics into guest behavior. This shows common ways guest move through the property and dwell times, which can be used to improve customer service and operational efficiencies.
MGM and other hotels like it is just one example where we can use data abstracted from the network elements layer, through the control layer to improve business and those business’ guest and end-user experience. This is just one of the many possible use cases that Cisco ONE Enterprise Networks Architecture makes possible in terms of delivering new connected experience. These new experiences will shape the way that our customers and guest will engage with our business in the future.