We live in a time when everything is becoming connected. When I was a kid, our house had only 1 phone that we all had to share. Now, each person in my family has their own mobile phone. Not only that, but my house has connected cameras. And smart speakers. My car has connected sensors. The office has connected lighting and security systems. I hear there are smart shoes that are somehow connected, but I’m not quite ready for that. Our expectation today is that things all around us are always on and always connected. Making this a reality has been difficult in the past. But together, 5G and Wi-Fi 6 represent the next massive shift in connectivity and data. And Cisco is introducing new technologies to leverage these industry standards and enable immersive wireless experiences.

Cisco announced that we are expanding our intent-based networking portfolio with next-generation wireless access points, campus core switching, and ecosystem partnerships. Here is a quick high level run through:

  • Catalyst 9100 – Next-generation access points supporting Wi-Fi 6, with higher data rates, increased IoT and mobile device capacity and performance in high-density environments, and improved power efficiency.
  • Cisco Meraki MR Access Points – Next-generation cloud-managed access points enabled for Wi-Fi 6, offering increased capacity, enhanced device battery life, scalability options, and improved roaming.
  • Catalyst 9600 – The next generation replacement to the flagship Catalyst 6000 family, the bedrock of the cloud-scale campus core offering more capacity per slot, port speeds up to 100G, and the industry’s most comprehensive security.
  • OpenRoaming – Cisco is building a consortium of identity and access providers to enable seamless, secure public Wi-Fi roaming and onboarding. Providers include Fira Barcelona, Presidio, Clair, Boingo, GlobalReach, and Samsung. Our goal is to make Wi-Fi onboarding as easy as cellular onboarding, where you can easily pass from one to another without logging in repeatedly.

What does this mean for partners?

It means big opportunity for you. According to the Cisco Visual Networking Index, more data traffic will be created in 2022 alone than in the combined 32 years since the Internet began. And Gartner forecasts that by 2020, more than 80% of new IoT projects will be deployed with cellular or wireless LAN architecture. With a current Cisco installed base of over $4B in wireless access points and $11B in Catalyst 6000 switching, now is the time to capture the opportunity to refresh and protect your accounts against the competition. There’s adjacent opportunity, too. The complexities of today’s IT environments mean there is more need than ever for automation. The 3-year forecast for network management software is $39B.

Don’t just take my word for it. Sam Clements, Practice Manager of Mobility at Presido says, “Cisco’s Catalyst Wi-fi based solutions are enabling us to address new and emerging business use-cases centered around greater Wi-Fi density requirements and better performing and more efficient IoT applications. We envision 2019 bringing us new challenges and we’re confident that leveraging 802.11ax solutions from Cisco will enable broader and deeper account penetration into a variety of verticals such as traditional enterprise and education, as well as manufacturing, healthcare, and entertainment”

According to Brian Ortbals, VP of Advanced Technology at WWT, “Cisco’s Catalyst wireless innovations enhance Wi-Fi 6 technology to provide our customers the best immersive experience in high-density environments with different IoT applications. Programmability on network devices like Catalyst 9800 wireless controllers and analytics with Cisco DNA center bring intent-based networking to every customer’s next-gen stack. WWT has always been at the forefront in leading with powerful innovations and has never been more excited to partner with Cisco in bringing these innovations to their customers.”

With all of this innovation comes opportunity for more services, as well. Customers will need your professional, consulting, and managed services. And because of our open APIs, there is opportunity for you to develop your own solutions on top of Cisco, too. We have a new wireless developer center in DevNet where you can easily learn how to program for Wi-Fi 6 or find additional partners to build innovative applications. These programming skills are a key part of how you can perform today with our technologies, and transform your business to deliver platform-enabled outcomes and a focus on customer experience.

To help you hit the ground running and scale your business, check out our Mentored Install Network Training program. And to help you maximize your profitability, be sure to leverage our Migration Incentive Program, VIP, and VIP Activation. Learn more about all of our new intent-based networking solutions on the SalesConnect Partner Launch Hub.

Together, Cisco and our partners will deliver always on, always connected access with no excuses.