& cplSiteName &

What Cisco Wants in a Carrier Partner

Mitch Wagner
4/10/2014
50%
50%

LAS VEGAS — Interop — When Cisco is evaluating service provider partners, it has special needs. The company looks for global reach, as well as the technology to support the company's "Intercloud" hybrid cloud strategy. Cisco's partners also need the bandwidth to carry the data explosion in the coming Internet of Everything.

Rebecca Jacoby, Cisco Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO) CIO and SVP, described what the company looks for in its partners in a one-on-one conversation during a reception here at Interop. During our discussion, Cisco attempted to distract me by cruelly dangling delicious hors d'oeuvres and pastries. But I remained resolute and focused.

"We're looking for service providers to be more global in nature," Jacoby said. When they don't cover a particular part of the globe, service providers need partnerships with local providers.

Cisco CIO and SVP Rebecca Jacoby (Source: Cisco)
Cisco CIO and SVP Rebecca Jacoby
(Source: Cisco)

Service providers need the technology infrastructure to support Cisco's Intercloud hybrid cloud strategy, which the company introduced recently. (See Cisco's Cloud Bet: What's in It for SPs?) When using hybrid clouds, enterprises run some applications in the cloud and others locally. Data and applications move between public and private clouds as needed. Proliferation of mobile devices and BYOD drives the need for Intercloud services, Jacoby said.

The Internet of Things (which Cisco chooses to call the Internet of Everything BECAUSE CISCO IS SUCH A SPECIAL SNOWFLAKE) will demand far greater bandwidth than currently needed, as everything from home washing machines to factory machinery is instrumented and connected to the Internet, Jacoby told me. Carriers will need to provide direct connections between the instrumented equipment and the location where the data is needed, rather than requiring the data to go through multiple hops. (See Chambers Caught in 90s Deja Vu.)

Some of the biggest challenges that Cisco faces in dealing with service providers are mundane, such as connecting billing and back-office with Cisco's internal systems, Jacoby said.

Cisco is in the process of implementing its own Application-Centric Infrastructure (ACI) architecture internally, both for its own operations and cloud offerings to partners and customers. In doing so, Jacoby's department is performing a time-honored function for vendor IT departments: providing a showcase for real-world use of the vendor's own technology. (See Cisco's ACI Gets Physical With SDN and Cisco Asks the Killer SDN Question.)

Cisco values ACI internally because it provides the kind of programmability that network managers look for with SDN without placing too much of a burden on staff. Network managers want programmability, but not if it's too hairy.

"It's all really complex enough. So what we're looking for is extraction and abstraction of the policy level." ACI's abstraction makes network programmability "really practical for an enterprise IT organization." She added, "You can set policy, you can manage policy, and [ACI] effectively allows you to program the fundamentals of how you are operating and prioritizing your resources." That kind of programmability, Jacoby believes, enhances network productivity and flexibility. (See SDN Faces a Human Hurdle .)

— Mitch Wagner, Circle me on Google+ Follow me on TwitterVisit my LinkedIn profileFollow me on Facebook, West Coast Bureau Chief, Light Reading. Got a tip about SDN or NFV? Send it to mwagner@lightreading.com.


Want to learn more about SDN and the transport network? Check out the agenda for Light Reading's Big Telecom Event (BTE), which will take place on June 17 and 18 at the Sheraton Chicago Hotel and Towers. The event combines the educational power of interactive conference sessions devised and hosted by Heavy Reading's experienced industry analysts with multi-vendor interoperability and proof-of-concept networking and application showcases. For more on the event, the topics, and the stellar service provider speaker lineup, see Telecommunication Luminaries to Discuss the Hottest Industry Trends at Light Reading's Big Telecom Event in June.


(4)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View        ADD A COMMENT
Mitch Wagner
50%
50%
Mitch Wagner,
User Rank: Lightning
4/12/2014 | 2:07:33 PM
Re: Partner or customer?
Steve102 - "Is "partner" another word for "customer" or is there some extraordinary business relationship here?"

In this case, "partner" means "provider" -- the people providing Cisco with connectivity for its own purposes. Complicated by the fact that these providers are also customers of Cisco's networking hardware, and partners and potential competitors for Cisco's Intercloud initiative. 
Steve102
50%
50%
Steve102,
User Rank: Light Beer
4/11/2014 | 6:23:21 AM
Partner or customer?
Is "partner" another word for "customer" or is there some extraordinary business relationship here?
Mitch Wagner
100%
0%
Mitch Wagner,
User Rank: Lightning
4/10/2014 | 4:27:11 PM
Re: Managed services...
Cisco's relationship with its carrier partners is complicated. Cisco is a supplier of networking equipment and services, a customer of the networks, and a partner and competitor in Intercloud cloud services. Makes my head hurt just thinking about it. 
mhhf1ve
50%
50%
mhhf1ve,
User Rank: Light Sabre
4/10/2014 | 4:03:19 PM
Managed services...
It looks like Cisco wants to provide ongoing services to its service provider partners... so everything is now about providing ongoing support and updates (and not just selling hardware). 

Open source trends seem to point to more and more of this, as the software is free, but the ongoing service and support isn't. And SDN will likely accelerate this trend in networking equipment.

 
From The Founder
Cisco's Conrad Clemson, recently promoted to head up the company's Service Provider Apps & Platforms developments, talks to Light Reading's Founder and CEO Steve Saunders about how he's bringing cloud video, mobile and virtualization together to empower network operators.
Flash Poll
Live Streaming Video
Charting the CSP's Future
Six different communications service providers join to debate their visions of the future CSP, following a landmark presentation from AT&T on its massive virtualization efforts and a look back on where the telecom industry has been and where it's going from two industry veterans.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei at CeBIT 2017: Day 3

3|22|17   |     |   (0) comments


Light Reading reports from CeBIT 2017 in Germany, where Huawei is exhibiting on the application of technologies and key business verticals such as transportation, smart city, manufacturing, media and finance.
LRTV Documentaries
No Regrets: Cox's Finkelstein on Fiber & More

3|22|17   |     |   (0) comments


At the Cable Next-Gen Technologies & Strategies event in Denver, Cox's Jeff Finkelstein examines the cable capex conundrum.
LRTV Documentaries
Cable Next-Gen: The 'Mile High' View From Denver

3|22|17   |   11:56   |   (0) comments


Alan Breznick kicks off the Cable Next-Gen Technologies & Strategies event in Denver, casting his thousand-yard stare over cable's current competitive landscape.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei at CeBIT 2017: Day 2

3|21|17   |   2:27   |   (0) comments


Light Reading reports from CeBIT 2017 in Germany, where Huawei is exhibiting digital transformation solutions around IoT, smart data centers, OpenCloud ecosystem and its newly announced storage-as-a-service solution.
LRTV Custom TV
Driving Better Mobile Customer Experience While Transforming the Mobile Network

3|21|17   |   7:47   |   (0) comments


The Citrix NetScaler mobile gateway is an intelligent traffic management solution which can markedly improve the customer experience provided by mobile operators, even when traffic is encrypted. Critical network services can be consolidated and virtualized using NetScaler. Because of the unique architecture, NetScaler can be deployed on any hypervisor, on a ...
LRTV Custom TV
Mastercard: What's Next for Mobile Payments?

3|21|17   |   7:49   |   (0) comments


2017 marks the fifth consecutive year for Mastercard at Mobile World Congress and it was a great time to reflect on the amazing advances the payments industry has made as well as discuss "What's Next' in the digital commerce future. We spoke to James Anderson, executive vice president of digital payments at MasterCard, about digital wallets to tokenization to ...
LRTV Custom TV
Mastercard: 2 Billion Adults 'Trapped' in Cash Economy

3|21|17   |   03:51   |   (0) comments


Despite advances made in the last several years, two billion adults around the world are trapped in a cash economy and lack what we take for granted -- a safe way to receive, save and use money. Shamina Singh, executive vice president of sustainability and president of the Mastercard Center for Inclusive Growth, chats about how Mastercard is developing new ways to ...
LRTV Custom TV
Mastercard: Payment From Every Device

3|21|17   |   5:55   |   (0) comments


A world where everything and everyone is connected creates new points of interaction for commerce. These digital experiences cannot be developed in isolation and instead require an ecosystem to drive mass consumer and enterprise adoption and create better consumer engagement. Predicting when that growth will happen is difficult, but always keeping the end user in ...
LRTV Interviews
InterDigital's Role in the 5G, IoT Era

3|21|17   |   05:47   |   (0) comments


Alan Carlton, managing director and VP for Europe at InterDigital, talks about the company's role in 5G projects in Europe and the prospects for the company in the IoT market.
LRTV Interviews
Lessons Learned From Digital Transformation

3|21|17   |   05:51   |   (0) comments


Ravi Palepu, global head of Telco Solutions at Virtusa, talks about some key takeaways from telco digital transformation experiences during the past couple of years.
Women in Comms Introduction Videos
NetNumber's CMO Shares Her Diversity Do's

3|21|17   |   3:19   |   (2) comments


The telecom industry is transforming the world, and diversity plays a critical role in driving the innovation behind it. NetNumber CMO Kim Gibbons shares why diversity and being authentic is a do amidst all the don'ts women in comms often hear.
LRTV Custom TV
Software-Driven Architecture for 5G & IOT

3|20|17   |   1:56   |   (0) comments


We present Heavy Reading's Jim Hodges's report from Mobile World Congress -- where operators and vendors are working to bring a variety of technologies together to make virtualization a reality in the era of 5G and IoT.
Upcoming Live Events
May 15-17, 2017, Austin Convention Center, Austin, TX
May 15, 2017, Austin Convention Center - Austin, TX
June 6, 2017, The Joule Hotel, Dallas, TX
All Upcoming Live Events
Infographics
With the mobile ecosystem becoming increasingly vulnerable to security threats, AdaptiveMobile has laid out some of the key considerations for the wireless community.
Hot Topics
High-Band 5G: Let's Address the Range Question, Shall We?
Dan Jones, Mobile Editor, 3/21/2017
Eurobites: Italy First Pasta the Post for 5G
Paul Rainford, Assistant Editor, Europe, 3/17/2017
5G Faces a Marathon, Not a Sprint
Iain Morris, News Editor, 3/17/2017
WiCipedia: Eradicating Pay Gaps & Squashing Bro Culture
Eryn Leavens, Special Features & Copy Editor, 3/17/2017
Eurobites: A1, Nokia Turn It Up to 11
Paul Rainford, Assistant Editor, Europe, 3/22/2017
Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed
BETWEEN THE CEOs - Executive Interviews
TEOCO Founder and CEO Atul Jain talks to Light Reading Founder and CEO Steve Saunders about the challenges around cost control and service monetization in the mobile and IoT sectors.
At MWC 2017, Qualcomm's CTO Matt Grob talks to Light Reading's CEO and Founder Steve Saunders about the progress being made in the development of the technologies and standards that will underpin 5G.
Animals with Phones
Neither Do We Click Here
Is that a prerequisite?
Live Digital Audio

Playing it safe can only get you so far. Sometimes the biggest bets have the biggest payouts, and that is true in your career as well. For this radio show, Caroline Chan, general manager of the 5G Infrastructure Division of the Network Platform Group at Intel, will share her own personal story of how she successfully took big bets to build a successful career, as well as offer advice on how you can do the same. We’ll cover everything from how to overcome fear and manage risk, how to be prepared for where technology is going in the future and how to structure your career in a way to ensure you keep progressing. Chan, a seasoned telecom veteran and effective risk taker herself, will also leave plenty of time to answer all your questions live on the air.