To read the first part of the Network Matters blog series that discusses how an architectural approach to mobility is essential for the Future of Mobility, click here. To read the second part of the series that focuses on how IT leaders can rely on a network to simplify the process of onboarding new mobile technology, click here. For the third part of this series that discusses how Service Providers can deepen their enterprise customer relationships by addressing pain points and meeting new enterprise mobility challenges, click here.

In the new mobile and cloud era, applications are evolving and changing the role of networking at a rapid pace.

In this final blog post of the Network Matters series, I’ll discuss how mobility is driving an application economy that is enabled by intelligent networks.

The Role of Mobility in the Application Economy

There has been a lot of conversation and discussion around how the proliferation of mobile devices, the rise in mobile traffic and the new demands from a mobile-enabled workforce redefining network needs.  A recent InfoWorld article reports that mobile developers are already seeing a strong demand for enterprise apps across various industries.

This growth in mobility is also responsible for the explosion of applications that allow organizations to be more productive and efficient in addressing customer needs and differentiating themselves from competitors.

What we’re seeing is a cause and effect scenario:  as technology trends like mobility, cloud and M2M communications gain even greater mainstream popularity, we are seeing a majorNetwork Matters - Post 4 shift in IT that is resulting in a new breed of applications and the need for big data and analytics technology.  These technology trends are all coming together and the effect is a massive shift in IT requiring a highly dynamic, scalable and secure infrastructure.

In fact, according to IDC, this growth of mobility and the rise in highly virtualized environments inside enterprise networks are exposing the limitations of existing networks, and driving the need for a new era of networks for the future.

So how do businesses today leverage their existing infrastructure to shift into this application economy?

The Evolution to an Application-Centric Infrastructure

On November 6th, we launched our Application Centric Infrastructure (ACI) vision to help IT departments dramatically simplify how they provision their data center resources (networking, servers, storage and services) that are critical to the performance of their applications. ACI is a key component in the model for next generation IT.

The idea is to create application affinity, or in other words, give the ability for applications to declare what resources they need, and for the infrastructure to respond dynamically. With the network as a foundation, applications can announce intent, and request and receive the policy and infrastructure resources they need without manual or complicated configuration/changes by IT.  From a northbound approach, this model for next generation IT provides for the infrastructure to, in turn, deliver data, state and other information back to applications for richer experiences and more informed end user operations.  Through hardware and software innovation, integrating the physical and virtual infrastructure, ACI reduces complexity and uses a common policy framework that can automate the provisioning and managing of resources.

More than converged, the infrastructure must be unified. Bringing the physical and virtual, wired and mobile infrastructures together gives companies of all sizes the opportunity to collect, analyze and use the data that traverses the network (something we’ve been calling “data in motion”) to deliver services, use applications and provide the optimal user experience through an intelligent infrastructure.

Forget the web economy, we are in the midst of transition to an application economy.  How are you going to take advantage of the shift?

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Padmasree Warrior

Chief Technology & Strategy Officer