Cisco brings data analytics to network hardware

Cisco Systems Inc. (NASDAQ: CSCO) has unveiled its data and analytics strategy and product portfolio.

Cisco Systems Inc. (NASDAQ: CSCO) has unveiled its data and analytics strategy and product portfolio.

The new Connected Analytics portfolio will help customers extract value from data generated by a rapidly expanding ecosystem of connected people, processes, data and things that together form what Cisco likes to call the Internet of Everything (IoE). The portfolio includes easy-to-deploy software packages that run on Cisco hardware, bringing analytics to data regardless of its location, the company claims.

A new Cisco study finds that 40% of survey respondents regard the inaccessibility and inability to interpret data as the biggest obstacle to translating connections into actionable insights. Cisco Consulting Services also estimates that analytics will drive $7.3 trillion of the $19 trillion IoE opportunity over the next 10 years. Clearly, Cisco wants to capture this market.

To date, analytics tools have been designed to help organizations extract useful insights from data that was mostly created within the organization's four walls, and almost always resided in a centralized data store, Cisco posits. Today, that model is no longer accurate, the company says; thanks to IoE, relevant data comes from a wide variety of sources, including from the edge of networks from mobile devices and sensors.

Cisco says a new analytics approach therefore is needed, one that combines intelligent networks and analytics capabilities so that real-time data can be processed closer to where it is being generated. This is a powerful combination, the company says, because it allows customers to correlate historic data at rest with real-time streaming analytics at the edge of the network. With improved insights into data that this creates, customers will be able to respond to threats immediately, dramatically improve business operations, and provide their employees and customers with the best experience possible, Cisco asserts.

Several items in the new Connected Analytics portfolio will be of particular interest to the service provider community. For example, Connected Analytics for Network Deployment analyzes the transport network for operational efficiencies, resolution of incidents, and visibility into network deployment. It is designed to enable organizations to detect issues before they happen for proactive problem resolution and to make future strategic decisions on how to drive maximum network stability and performance at the lowest possible cost.

Connected Analytics for Service Providers is designed to provide intelligence based on usage patterns in networks, operations, and customer data. Cisco says that end-to-end visibility helps service providers improve network planning and understand infrastructure investments in the context of service usage/adoption, and customer and competitive dynamics. These insights also help service providers deliver a better and more personalized experience such as more accurate recommendations on the types of movies a customer may enjoy or the ability to send out usage alerts in advance of billing cycles.

Cisco also offers several other flavors tailored for specific environments, including Connected Analytics for IT, which provides business intelligence to help align IT capabilities business objectives; Connected Analytics for Collaboration, which helps a customer to analyze its use and impact of Cisco Collaboration applications; and Connected Analytics for Mobility, which can monitor usage patterns and provide insights for customers using the Cisco Service Provider Wi-Fi platform.

These offers build on Cisco's IOx platform, which allows customers and systems providers across all industries to develop, manage and run software applications directly on Cisco industrial networked devices, including hardened routers, switches, and other devices.

The Connected Analytics portfolio is available globally, and will also be enabled through Cisco's partner program.

For more information on large-scale switch/routers and suppliers, visit the Lightwave Buyer's Guide.

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