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Cisco get big(ger) on big data

15/12/2014 by


New ‘Internet of things’ services that offer insights into usage patterns and equipment health are becoming important new sources of revenue for both tech giants.

Cisco is embarking on a new mission to sell analytics services using information gleaned from devices connected to its networking equipment—everything from smartphones to cameras.

The ambitious plan is part of Cisco’s “Internet of Everything” strategy—its desire to see its technology become the connective tissue helping businesses (or anyone else for that matter) gather more information about virtually every piece of equipment or technology relating to operations. For Cisco CEO John Chambers, who has held his position for more than three decades, the launch could become a defining moment in his legacy.

“It’s the one piece we were missing,” Chambers said told the Wall Street Journal prior to the introduction.

Two of the first customer segments targeted with the new product portfolio, called Cisco Connected Analytics, are retailers and event organizers.

For example, a store manager could correlate information collected from video cameras tracking shoppers with inventory data to ensure that shelves are stocked adequately. An event manager could monitor wireless network traffic to help make decisions such as which concession stands in a stadium might need more staffing or extra hotdogs.

“With Cisco Connected Analytics for Events, we will be able to better understand our supporters’ behaviors and actions immediately and deliver them an enhanced match experience. For example, we will be able to offer specials to fans at the newest concession stand based on previous purchases or deliver video highlights and statistics of their favorite player as the action unfolds on the pitch,” said John Ola Bergaplass, a chief technical strategist for Norsk Toppfotball, a Norwegian soccer league.

Cisco CSCO -0.22%  is also selling services that could help with businesses and service provides with networking planning and maintenance, a strategy similar to the “Industrial Internet” plan embraced by General Electric four years ago.

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